Hand the deck of cards to any spectator and ask that he make sure the cards are all different from one another. Then, have the deck thoroughly shuffled and tabled. As soon as the cards are on the table, note and remember, the top card of the deck. With Ted Lesley's ingenious system, that's easy. A quick glance at the back of the top card and you've got the necessary information. (Note: If you're using an unmarked deck of cards, as soon as the spectator's finished shuffling, retrieve and spread the deck momentarily to show that the cards are indeed well mixed. Naturally, as you spread the cards from hand-to-hand, note the identity of the top card of the deck and then turn the deck face-down).
Pick up the slip of paper and write the name of the card you noted on top of the shuffled deck, in our example, the Nine of Diamonds. Crumple the paper into a loose ball and place it under an inverted glass tumbler without letting anyone see what you wrote. Have the spectator cut the tabled deck into two piles. Keep your eye on the original top half and remember where it is. Explain the test conditions aspect of the experiment and request that the spectator cut either packet in two, creating a third pile of cards. Continue to track the location of the original top portion of the deck.
Ask the spectator to freely select any one of the three piles and emphasize the fact that the pile selected is the pile that will be used. If the spectator points to the original top portion of the deck, the effect is all over. Have him turn the top card of that pile face-up and it will, of course, match your prediction.
If, however, either of the other two piles is selected, pick up the original top card (your predicted card) and place it face-down in your right hand. The top card of the remaining pile is now picked up and placed on top of the first card, spread approximately one-inch to the right. State that either of these two cards could have been selected (don't show their faces just yet), however the spectator did, in fact, select the top card of the remaining pile. With the left hand, pick up the top card of the remaining pile and place it between the two cards in the right hand, outjogging it approximately one-inch. This means the selected card is now protruding outward between the remaining two cards.
The following description explains the "Monte" move alluded to earlier. Read it carefully with cards in hand. The three cards, with the spectator's chosen card outjogged, are held in the right hand. The bottom edges, closest to you, of the two outside cards both all even with one another. The left hand now turns, palm side down. With the left forefinger and index finger on top, and the left thumb underneath, grasp the two cards on the left. In other words, grasp the left hand card and the outjogged card with the left fingers. The right thumb should be resting on top of the remaining card with the right forefinger and second finger underneath.
The following actions will now occur simultaneously: The right hand rotates at the wrist, turning its single card face-up, toward the performer. At the same time, the left hand rotates at the wrist (in a direction away from the performer), turning its two cards face-up. During the turn, the left thumb pushes what was the bottom card of the three (the force card) to the right. Following the turnover, the force card will automatically appear outjogged. Actually, the former center card is injogged.
Place the face-up card from the right hand atop the face-up pair in the left hand, aligned so the force card appears outjogged. At this point, the left hand is holding all three cards in a spread condition, however, the original top card of the deck (your prediction card) is now protruding from between the other two cards. In other words, you have neatly switched the bottom card of the three with the outjogged center card, in the act of turning all three cards face-up. (Note: In the Trevor Lewis version, he doesn't outjog the center card at all, keeping the bottom edges of all three cards lined up throughout. Try it both ways and take your pick)
Practice the "Monte" move until you have it down pat. It's truly very easy once you have the hang of it. You can now point out that the spectator could have easily chosen either of the two cards flanking the spectator's freely (?) selected card. Finish as previously described.
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Today I'm going to teach you a fundamental Mentalism technique known as 'cold reading'. Cold reading is a technique employed by mentalists and charlatans and by charlatan I refer to psychics, mediums, fortune tellers or anyone that claims false abilities that is used to give the illusion that the person has some form of super natural power.