Sunday, February 10, 2008

Twenty Cards

The magician sets twenty randomly selected cards on the table, face up. While the magician is out of the room, each of the spectators mentally select a different pair of cards. The performer randomly places the cards in rows of five. Each of the spectators point to the two rows that their cards are in, and the magician immediately picks up their pair of cards.Secret: The cards are not actually placed at random, instead a formula is used to place them in a special self-working pattern. Imagine that you see these four rows of words spelled with big letters across the table: start, bells, brooz, and dazed. Start by placing the first pairs of cards on each imaginary S, then on each T, and on each A and R. Continue going down the rows, placing the each of the pairs of cards on the next pair of letters in the formula. Now as the spectators point to the rows their two cards are in, you pick up the only pair of cards in these rows.

Practice placing the cards in this formula, until you can do it fast enough to look natural. Place the twenty cards in pairs on the table first, leave the room, and ask the spectators to select their pair of cards. Do not put them in their special order until you have re-entered the room. This will also give the spectators less time to over think the entire process. When you enter the room, pick up the cards and quickly lay them in the special order. Now if they say their item is in the first and last row you know it is the object in the place of the letter A. If their item is in the second and third rows, then the letter B will be your key. You will notice that you do not necessarily need to use the letters to find the pairs, simply use the formula to place the cards in their self-working location.

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