Pick up two rubber bands and the nickeled ring. "In this experiment I am using two rubber bands and a small nickeled ring. You can examine the ring, sir, as I place the bands around my fingers."
Give the ring to a spectator to examine. Place the two rubber bands together as one and wrap them around fingers of right hand as shown in Figures 1 and 2.
You can readily see how the bands wind in and out around the fingers. Keep bands between first and second joints of fingers. Show hand on both sides, spreading fingers so that audience can see that bands are wrapped around fingers fairly.
"You will note how the bands secure each finger by winding themselves around it and how they bind all the right fingers together. Now, if you will please give me the ring."
Take ring from gentleman with left hand. As you do this, drop right hand at side for a second, and in doing so, slip SECOND finger from the rubber band loop around it. Figure 3.
When finger is free, place it in back of rubber bands. From the front of the hand it looks as though all the fingers are still tied, but in reality the second finger is free. You may even spread your fingers apart and it will look as though all the fingers are still wrapped with the rubber bands. Figure 4.
"I will place it on the first joint of my second finger."
You must now show both sides of hand again to prove that bands are still secure. To show back of hand, push tip of second finger under the bands and let finger come in front of bands. You do this as you turn your hand. Then to show front of hand again, slip finger back to original position in back of bands.
Practice this move until you can do it easily and naturally. To the audience it will appear that all the fingers are secured when you show them both sides of your hand again, whereas your second finger is really free. Study Figures 5 and 6.
Place ring on the first joint of the second finger of right hand outside the bands. You should stand turned a little toward the right with right hand held out to side about shoulder height. Figure 7.
"It is said that a solid object cannot be passed through another solid object without harming either. That may be true but this little ring is an exception to the rule. It is always running around and going into places you would least expect. Here it rests on my finger on the outside of these rubber bands. It cannot get down onto the base of my finger because these bands will not let it."
Spread fingers and show with the aid of left hand that ring cannot get beyond rubber bands. Close fingers together again.
"That's what we say, but the ring says not so."
Push hand out suddenly and allow ring to slip down past bands onto the base of finger. This is easy to do as finger is free and need be lifted only slightly away from bands in order to permit the ring to slide down. Figure 8.
"See, here it is at the base of my finger. It has broken right through the traces. Iron bars do not a prison make—neither do rubber bands."
Show both sides of hand again. Keep fingers pointed upward a little and as you turn hand, slide second finger under bands as you did before. Figure 9.
The object of keeping your fingers pointed upward is to guard against dropping the ring off from the finger. As you turn hand to show back of it, there is danger of the ring slipping off unless you hold hand properly, as shown in Figure 10.
Now point fingers downward, palm of hand toward audience, and allow ring to slide off finger into left hand. Figure 11. Do this move quickly.
"Now—one, two, three—and the prisoner has escaped. I shall explain this again with a pair of scissors so that you will misunderstand it still further."
Take a pair of blunt-end scissors from pocket with left hand. Pass tip of second finger of right hand through one of the handles of scissors. Hold ends of scissors with left hand. Figure 12.
"I slip the first joint of my finger through a handle of the scissors."
Push scissors suddenly behind rubber bands to base of finger.
"Well—well—here it is on the third joint."
Turn hand over and manipulate second finger to front of bands so that when back of hand is shown rubber bands seem to be around all the fingers.
Let go of scissors with left hand while hand is being turned. Then show palm of hand again with second finger behind bands. "But what's a joint or two between friends in prohibition time." Pull scissors off of finger and away from hand. "Now it is away from all joints."
Show right hand again, both sides, to convince audience that fingers are securely wrapped with the rubber bands.
"Rather an odd thing, that."
Pull bands from fingers suddenly to destroy the evidence.
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