Figure 3

The demonstrator stands perfectly erect and holds a billiard cue, or cane, before her chest as signified by 3 A in Figure 1. It is grasped at C D, with the elbows bent at almost right angles. The subject is requested to stand directly in front and grasp the cue with both hands OUTSIDE the operator's hands. The illustration shows only one person pushing against the lady but more than one may exert their combined strength. They are requested to push as hard as they please directly against the lady, as shown by line 3 F, and not upward toward the head, and to push steadily and not spasmodically and jerkily.

If the student will observe, their line of force begins at their feet, as a base, continues through the muscular system of the body, and passes along the arms and hands to the billiard cue. They necessarily strain and bend forward their bodies, as shown, in their efforts to nush the demonstrator, and this position naturally prevents their force from being exerted toward the head in the direction of the line G H, but tends to carry it horizontally toward the chest, and rather in a downward direction than upward. The secret lies, not in a counteracting force, but in an annihi-Page 576

lating force. The demonstrator exerts only enough resisting force to hold the cue up and in place, and keep it from being pressed downward by the reclining weight and somewhat downward pressure of the opponent. Just exert enough pressure to keep that cue UP in position, keep it from being pushed downward while you stand on one or two feet and keep your balance.

The little upward movement necessary to keep the cue in position deflects every bit of the opponent's great pressure up into the air and off of yourself.' The combined force of one or more men is annihilated and deflected upwards in the direction of line G H to be dissipated in the empty air. It is like the principle of a silk handkerchief or small twig deflecting a rifle ball or a thin piece of ice deflecting a swift-flying stone striking obliquely on its surface.


This is the attempt to force a cane or billiard cue to the floor across the open palm of the performer. The experimenter grasps the cue A B (in illustration No. 2) at the spots marked E and F. The performer places her open palm flat against the under side and between his hands as shown in the picture at C. His hands at S and F, with the weight of his body and all of his muscular force exerted at these points, attempt to push the object A B in the direction shown, to the floor. The performer's hand at C never grasps the object, but rests only against, or under it.

It is well to have the hands examined for adhesive material prior to this test for there are many absurd theories as to its accomplishment. The pressure exerted at C in keeping the hand in firm contact with the object is but a minimum as compared with that exerted by the experimenters perpendicularly. What is it that counteracts all this downward pressure and weight?

The direction of the force of the magician's opponents is exerted directly downward, almost horizontally in a line of the object A B. '.Vhen this force is brought to bear on the object it necessarily presses it in firm contact with the hand at C. The performer's effort is to keep up the contact at C and thus keep the palm tiglitly pressed against the object. This brings into play the principle of "Deflection of Force I' Instead of the force being exerted at E and F operating down the line A B towards the floor, it is deflected at a tangent by the hand at C, and dissipated into the air, in the general direction of X-Y.

This deflection of the force exerted by the experimenter renders it necessary for him to constantly keep changing the position of his body and feet, in order to get a purchase to keep up his pressure, and this necessity to change, which he cannot understand, keeps him excited and bewildered all of the time, which mental condition doesn't aid him a bit. Just remember that the force applied along A B when itcomes in contact with a slight pressure of the hand at C, glances off and carries the object in a different direction than towards the floor, and hence the resultis that no amount of pressure applied can push the object to the floor.

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