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Topic: Confusing Question
Message: Posted by: BerkleyJL (Feb 8, 2005 07:44AM)
Has anyone ever done this? If so, does it achieve the desired response?

Call a spectator for an effect...usually a prediction of some sort. Ask, "Have we ever met before to set this up?" When they say no, ask, "If we had prearranged this, don't you think it wouldn't make sense for me to not tell you to say we didn't?"

Then look at the audience and say wryly, "The fact that he/she had to stop and think about that just goes to prove my point." ::grin::

I'm hoping that exchange will be humorous and still show (by the assistant's confused expression) that we had not prearranged the effect.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Feb 9, 2005 11:48AM)
Are you asking them to think?
Message: Posted by: BerkleyJL (Feb 9, 2005 11:54AM)
Is that a bad idea?

I'm just thinking that the confused expression that comes over my spectator assistant's face as they ponder that question will generate a laugh from the rest of the audience and hopefully support the fact that nothing is prearranged.
Message: Posted by: Sergeant (Feb 15, 2005 10:27PM)
What you have is half a joke. Or at worst a joke that is on the poor spectator that you have called up, since he has a difficult time deciphering what you have just asked. It makes him look confused and possibly stupid. The uncomfortable situation will make the audience laugh but . . . not all laughs are good laughs.

You have to finish your set up. You have now asked a very difficult question. The best way to get the laugh is to turn the joke on yourself or no one in particular.

The second line "The fact that he/she had to stop and think about that just goes to prove my point.", puts the egg on the spectatorís face. (he/she is not smart enough to figure out what I am saying.)

A better ending might be.
ďSometimes when I tell someone something I didnít tell them or not to say what was told to them earlier by someone other than me, they get confused. If you donít understand what I am saying donít worry, because before I did magic I used to write the directions for operating VCRs. I have been married and divorced many times . . . communication issues.Ē

This takes the pressure off the spectator and lets them enjoy the fun. Also it keeps you from looking like someone who will take advantage of people when the get nervous on stage.

Do not worry about people thinking about anything being prearranged, reguardless of what is said people will think what they think about prearranged magic. If the trick really depends on people believing that the person is not a stooge then a joke is definitly not the way to go and . . you probably should have a very random way of picking the spectator to insure fairness.

Sergeant
Message: Posted by: BerkleyJL (Feb 16, 2005 01:27AM)
Thanks Sergeant! I really appreciate that. I like the idea of bringing the joke back on me, and I can definitely understand that I don't want to make my spectator assistant uncomfortable.

I think what I'll do is carry on with the confusing multiple negatives until I seem to get lost in what I'm saying and "give up" on the exchange.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Feb 16, 2005 11:30AM)
Do you remember all the instructions I gave you just before the show?
Do you still have the cat in your jacket?
No?
Are you the person I was working with before?
Oops, I guess I need better glasses.
What's your name?
Folks meet xxxxx
Hello xxxxx would you assist me with ....
Message: Posted by: Brad Lancaster (Mar 11, 2005 12:52AM)
Excellent! Johnathan that is how to set up a joke. Ten points!
Message: Posted by: Ollie1235 (Mar 12, 2005 04:16AM)
Another bit of comedy you could add in there is when yor shaking there hand and asking them to confirm that you never set anything up, 'accidently' drop a fiver on the floor (as if trying to hand it to them when shaking there hand).
doing this will pretty much confirm that you never set anything up because your making such a big joke about it.

ollie
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (Mar 12, 2005 05:56AM)
Welcome to my office (the stage)! Now, before we start, OSHA requires me to ask you a couple of questions - are you reasonably sober, or have you ben drinking the hard stuff?"

If Yes, wipe brow and reply - "Well, that'll make MY job esier - and you'll probably enjoy yourself more, too!"

If No - "Well, I guess now I'll have to work for a living up here!"

Plays well.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
Message: Posted by: magicjohn2278 (Apr 4, 2005 07:24PM)
When hopping tables..

"Madam I wonder if you would help me.. what is your name?"
"Carol"
"Now then Carol, when you came in tonight, did anybody try to influence you in any way, did they say "If the Magician ask you to think of a number, then seven would be good", or anything like that?"

"No."

"I'm sorry, I've got the wrong woman... is there another Carol at this table?"
Message: Posted by: JonathanM (Apr 16, 2005 12:45AM)
Yeah Berkley, you listen to good advice. I agree that putting the joke back on yourself is the way to go for your helper's sake.

Ollie, Lee Darrow and MagicJohn:
Those are very funny lines!