Indoor Baseball

EFFECT: The performer looks at his watch and excitedly announces that is time for "Indoor Baseball." He offers a deck of cards for examination and gives a spectator a magic marker with which to write his name across the face of any card. The signed card is then shuffled into the deck.

The performer introduces the playing surface: a dart board which has a baseball game on one side of the board. After taking the deck, the magician scales a couple of cards at the board. Not being happy with the results, he throws the entire deck at the board only to have all of the cards scatter everywhere... except one. The signed card is seen to be nailed to the board with its face and signature plainly visible. The card is torn from the board and given to the spectator as a memento of his first major league "Indoor Baseball" game.

COMMENTS: Indoor Baseball has several important features which make it outstanding.

(1) It presents no new or difficult sleights for the performer.

(2) If s simple to do, sure-fire, and can be done close-up in nightclubs or on a stage.

(3) plays ifs flashy, and it has a clear-cut ending.

(4) Finally, it gives the spectators a memory hook by which to remember you. They remember the catch phrase title, "Indoor Baseball," long after they have forgotten more involved themes.

PROCEDURES: Have at the ready a dart board that has a baseball game on one side. This is a standard item, available at sporting good and variety stores (FIG. 1). You also need a deck of cards, a heavy dark magic marker, and a package of thumb tacks. If you have a watch that counts down to an alarm, you can set it for 60 seconds, then have it go off to signal the beginning of Indoor Baseball. When it is time to play Indoor Baseball, make it sound like a treat Ask if "anyone remembered to bring the bats." Hand out the deck for shuffling. Have a card selected and signed with the marker. This insures that at the 'moment of truth' everyone sees at once the correct card was discovered.

Introduce your playing surface. I call mine "AMMAR MEMORIAL FIELD." (Of course, you should use your own name.) At this point, you should either have an assistant hold the board or hang it on the back of a chair. If an assistant holds the board, you can have a handle put onto the back so it may be held like a shield. To prevent any injuries, use care in throwing the cards, and remain close enough for your throws to be accurate.

During the introduction of the field you will have plenty of opportunity to steal the thumb tack. It is held by its point between the right third and fourth fingers. Take the deck face up in the left hand and spread the cards between your hands. This covers the tack in the right hand, which is being worked to the end of the fingers. Expose as much of the point as possible. You will secretly push the tack through the signed card as it is returned to the deck. To do this, the right hand holds a stock of cards, with the tack held beneath it by the right middle finger. The left hand holds out its cards for the return of the selection. As the card is returned, the left thumb pushes it over the right side of its packet as the hands come together (FIG. 2, exposed view).

The left thumb pushes the signed card to the right about two inches, and the left second and third fingers separate and press against the back of the selection. As the hands come back together, slide the tack across the face of the card, between the separated left second and third fingers, and impale the card (FIG. 3). If you like, you can again separate the hands, and the head of the tack can be naturally covered with the left thumb.

Square the selection into the deck. The deck has a large gap in it due to the tack, (You don't have to hold a break!) Cut the card with the tack to the back of the face-up deck. This is done as you "size up the field conditions." Move to about ten to fifteen feet in front of the dart board.

You may give the deck a few Hindu shuffles, or any mixing of the face-up cards which doesn't disturb the selection on the bottom. Introduce the pack of thumb tacks. Have a spectator select a thumb tack and have them insert its point anywhere into one end of the deck (FIG. 4).

Take a card and scale it toward the board (HG, 5). Announce that you have 51 more tries, and if you take them all at once you "could either strikeout seventeen times orgetone home run."When the right hand draws back to throw the deck, the left hand follows along in true pitching form. Under cover of the larger motion, the right third finger slides the tack along the end of the deck and into your left hand (FIG. 6).

"Shooting for the home run," throw the deck so that it strikes to the board in a flat condition. This throw is more of a push, much like throwing a shot put (FIG. 7). The weight of the deck drives the tack into the board and sprays the cards in all directions. The spectators see the signed ^election affixed to the board, with the face of the card (and the signature) facing outward (FIG. 8).

Say, "Pandemonium reigns at AmmutMemorial Stadium! We Jr.'-J 'tget a home run but w found your card and Had a ball in the process! " Finish by holding the tack firmly with your left forefinger,the right hand dramatically tears the card from the board before giving it out as a souvenir.

Baseball For Boys

Baseball For Boys

Since World War II, there has been a tremendous change in the makeup and direction of kid baseball, as it is called. Adults, showing an unprecedented interest in the activity, have initiated and developed programs in thousands of towns across the United States programs that providebr wholesome recreation for millions of youngsters and are often a source of pride and joy to the community in which they exist.

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