Odd Men

Two spectators each pick a card and both cards are lost into the deck. One card magically reverses. Then, you flip the deck over revealing that it has separated into reds and blacks. One card is seen to be the only black card among the 25 reds, the other the only red card among 25 blacks!

Before you begin, separate the colors—we'll say blacks on top of the reds—though it's not important. Finally crimp the bottom card so that you can easily cut it back to the bottom later.


1. Give the deck a false shuffle retaining the color separation and the bottom crimped card, then hold it face-down in left-hand dealing grip. Slowly spread the cards from hand to hand and invite a spectator (A) to touch a card. Make sure he touches one in the upper half. Flip the card face-up then outjog it, saying, cryptically, "That's an odd choice but a very good one!"

2. With the deck square again (apart from the outjogged card), riffle down the outer left corner with your left thumb and ask a second spectator (B) to call stop. This time you make sure he stops in the lower half.

Do the RSC reversal of the upper section then replace it as you raise your hands to let the spectator see the face card of the upper/outjogged section. Ask him to remember his card. Keeping your hands raised, pivot out the upper section— minus the injogged first selection (Fig.1)—and place it back on top (no break held), then lower your hands.

3. Cut about a quarter of the deck from top to bottom to centralize spectator A's face-up card. Spread the cards, as you tell spectator A, "Now let's see where your odd choice is." The card will appear in the middle. Flip it face-down, doing Robverse with the card above it, then square the deck. See the next chapter for a description of Robverse.

Turn to spectator B, saying, "What was the card you looked at?" When he replies, say, "Now, that's really odd!" Spread the deck again revealing his card is now face-up. After a pause, slide the spread cards under it, bringing it to the top, then turn it face-down, and cut at the crimp.

4. Finally riffle the deck for effect, saying, "When you do that it causes the colors to instantly separate." Flip the deck face-up and spread the cards across the table showing the color separation, then say, "But look, there's one 'odd card' among the reds and the other 'odd card' among the blacks now, didn't I tell you that you each made an odd choice?"

Chapter 22

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