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Topic: Dennis Loomis' "Memorized Deck Magic" Articles
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 21, 2013 12:32AM)
Dennis Loomis was not only a great contributor to The Magic Café and the Shuffled and Stirred section but also very helpful and one of the friendliest people on this forum. Although I never had the chance to communicate with him directly, his and Simon Aronson's contributions are a big reason why I finally decided to learn a memorized stack.

He is greatly missed.

In doing some memdeck research on the Café I noticed that the loomismagic site is no longer available. And with that the great articles on memorized deck magic that Dennis wrote, and made available to all for free, are also gone. These were some really great pieces of writing. What I want to do is repost them here as I have time, I believe his articles deserve to still remain accessible and not forgotten.

I was going to post them all at once, one post right after another, but decided against it because I want to take the time to update the links and make sure the text is displayed properly. I have only made minor changes like updating url links (like Simon Aronson's current website) or fix the formatting. Eventually, I'd like to compile these in a nice PDF and also make that available but for now I will just work on getting the articles uploaded.

Hope you all enjoy, Dennis had some great insight on memory deck work, and I'm really looking forward to reading these articles. I hope you all are as well.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 21, 2013 12:35AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 1)[/b]

[b][i]Comments on Simon Aronson's Website, Red Sea Passover, Henry Christ Routine, Matching the Cards, etc. [/b][/i]

[i]The First in a series of articles by Dennis Loomis [/i]

I’m thrilled with the reopening of Simon Aronson’s web site at the new URL:

[url]http://simonaronson.com/home.htm[/url]

The first update is very special, Simon has included a free downloadable copy of his [url=http://simonaronson.com/Memories%20Are%20Made%20of%20This.pdf][b][i]Memories Are Made of This[/b][/i][/url] (an introduction to memorized deck magic) from his 1999 lecture notes. I believe that this is simply the best introduction to memorized deck work, which has been written. If you have been thinking about getting into memorized deck magic, run, don’t walk, to Simon’s Site and print this out. You’ll never regret it, I promise you.

For me, the new gem is Simon’s version of the Henry Christ Ace Routine. This is done from the Aronson stack and that both strengthens and simplifies the original great trick. Simon points out two advantages to Aronson stack users in doing the Christ effect this way. Any secret counting of piles is now unnecessary because known key cards instantly tell you where to divide the packets. And, the haphazard handling throughout the routine, with cards being continuously separated into various piles, dealt, counted, spelled and reassembled, is a strong convincer that the deck has been hopelessly mixed up. If you do memorized deck work, you know how important that second benefit is. Finally, let me point out that the routine is not technically challenging at all. Card workers of medium level skills who already are familiar with the Aronson stack will be able to add this to their repertoire quite quickly. If you can hold a break, do a double lift, and displace a card from one position in a spread to another with a cull, you can do this effect.

There’s another new effect with the Aronson stack explained in detail on the site: [url=http://www.simonaronson.com/matching.htm][b][i]Matching the Cards[/b][/i][/url] by Norman Beck and Simon. It’s a version of the Vernon Matching the Cards effect but done from the Aronson stack. I’ve not had time to really work through this one yet, but it certainly looks promising at first reading. And again, you start and end with the deck in Aronson Stack order.

Simon has a new-marketed effect on the site as well. It’s a new version of the routine [b][i]This Side Up[/b][/i] from his book [b][i]Simply Simon[/b][/i]. If you wanted to do this excellent routine before, you had to get special cards made up. Now, they are available from Simon. I've ordered the effect, but haven’t seen it yet. However, it’s been seven years since the book was published, and I’ll bet that Simon has some new touches and handlings worked out by now. This was the case with the marketed version of [b][i]Red Sea Passover[/b][/i]. It was originally published in The Card Ideas of Simon Aronson in 1978, and reprinted in [b][i]Bound to Please[/b][/i] in 1994. When A-1 Magical Media released the marketed version, in 2001, Simon included some new handling tips and instructions.

Incidentally, on the subject of [b][i]Red See Passover[/b][/i]. There are many other uses for the special cards that you receive with this routine. I don’t want to infringe on any rights, but there is a marvelous version of the ten-card poker deal called [b][i]Showdown[/b][/i] in Nick Trost's book [b][i]“The Card Magic of Nick Trost.”[/b][/i] Nick also put this on the market including the necessary gaffed cards. However, I wasn’t fond of the particular gaffs that were included. If you have the Trost book, look at Figure 1 on page 217. Two gaffed cards are pictured. I do not like the fact that one of these is in hearts and one in spades. If you use two cards alike, instead, you do not have the suits of the cards changing during the course of the routine. You can achieve this by buying two sets of [b][i]Showdown[/b][/i], or two sets of [b][i]Red See Passover[/b][/i]. If you use the RSP cards, you will get lots of spares and will have much flexibility in choosing the ten cards you use in the routine. But first, buy Nick’s book if you don’t have it. It’s a gold mine of card effects that are not too technically demanding.

The new site has an improved version of the [url=http://simonaronson.com/quizzer.htm][b][i]Aronson Stack Quizzer[/b][/i][/url], a drill program on the Aronson stack by Mark Harris. This will be most valuable to those learning the stack, of course, but as an experienced user, I find it a handy way to just brush up on the stack and to work on recall speed.

Simon had some difficulty with the former host of his web site and had to change to the new URL. In particular, it’s unfortunate that the August [b][i]Genii[/b][/i] has his ad with the wrong site address. If you’re a fan of Simon’s work, as I am, you can help to spread the word. Let your fellow magicians know, and post the change to any other forums, chat rooms, etc., that you might frequent.

Again, [url]wwwsimonaronson.net/home.htm[/url] is the new URL.

Next month I will share with the [b][i]Smoke and Mirrors[/b][/i] readers my tips and suggestions on Simon Aronson's [b][i]Histed Heisted[/b][/i]. The effect was created by Louis Histed, and made commercial by the addition of a strong ending by Simon. He published it in his book [b][i]Bound To Please[/b][/i]. I hope you will enjoy reading my additions to one of the strongest effects you can do with a deck of cards.

If you use a memorized deck in your work, I urge you to contact me. I’d like to put together a network of people using this powerful tool. If you have any routines, thoughts, tips, or touches on this work that you’d like to share. Let me know and I’ll include them in upcoming issues of [b][i]Smoke and Mirrors[/b][/i].

--

Dennis Loomis
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 21, 2013 12:46AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 2)[/b]

[b][i]Loomis additions to Louis Histed and Simon Aronson's Histed Heisted[/b]][/i]

[i]The Second in a series of articles by Dennis Loomis[/i]

The topic this time is Simon Aronson and Louis Histed’s effect [b][i]Histed Heisted[/b][/i]. This has become one of my favorite stand-up mentalism demonstrations. It requires only a deck of cards, an envelope, and a pair of scissors, and so requires little room in the prop case. But, it plays “big” and can be used in good-sized theatres as well as much smaller venues.

It is not my intention to describe the working of the effect. For that, you’ll need to consult the book [b][i]Bound to Please[/b][/i] by Simon Aronson. Briefly, here’s what happens in the original Louis Histed routine. A deck of cards is introduced and small packets of cards are passed out to several spectators. Each one shuffles his packet and then mentally selects one of the cards from his packet. The cards are collected by one spectator who shuffles the entire deck and returns it to the performer. The performer reads off the cards, in their shuffled sequence, pausing from time to time to read the minds of some of the spectators until all of the cards mentally selected have been revealed. It’s a baffling routine, but Simon realized that what it needed, for dramatic satisfaction, was an ending. His solution to this was to have a prediction sealed in an envelope. He reveals the final card thought of by opening the envelope and having the prediction read aloud. It is the selected card. This addition takes a very good effect into the miracle class, in my opinion.

However, the envelope with the prediction cannot be put on display at the beginning of the routine. It is produced from one of your pockets right at the end and just before it’s opened and read by a spectator. I also do not like routines where the spectator is “in charge” at the climax. This handling requires that a spectator read the prediction. (Obviously you cannot do it yourself.) Some may do a good job of this, but many will not. And, for larger venues you will have to get a microphone to the spectator, or have him come to the stage so that he can use the mike and be heard. I would rather be alone center stage for the climax of my routines whenever possible.

I think I’ve solved both of these problems nicely. The envelope is placed on display right at the beginning of the routine. It can be hung on a clip on the curtain, or clipped to the microphone stand. The prediction inside is not written. It's a card from a different deck, and needs only to be removed from the envelope and displayed. I realize that in larger venues the people way in back may not be able to see the card, but they do know that the folks up front can see it, and that establishes for them that it is correct.

And, there are actually two envelopes, one large and one small. The smaller one is sealed within the larger one. At the end of the routine, I cut open the large envelope with the scissors and withdraw the smaller one. I show the inside of the large envelope to the people in front. Then the small envelope is cut open and a single playing card. It is the card that the spectator mentally selected. To accomplish this, one of the traditional tools of the mentalist is used, the double envelope. In fact, three of them are used for the routine. (See Notes One and Three for alternatives that eliminates the nest of two envelopes.) You need to be able to show any one of five playing cards at the climax of the routine. In [b][i]Histed Heisted[/b][/i], the fifth spectator will be looking at the following cards: 9S, 7D, 7H, 10C and 4C. These are cards 5, 15, 25, 35, and 45 in the Aronson Stack. You need to be able to display any one of them. To accomplish this, the 9S is in one side of one of the small envelopes, and the 10C is in the other side of the same envelope. This envelope is, in turn, placed into one side of the large double envelope. The second small envelope has the 7H in one side, and in the other side is a double face card with the 4C and 7D back to back. The double face card comes in the normal double face deck of Bicycle Cards.

During [b][i]Histed Heisted[/b][/i], you will, at some point find out which card that spectator five thought of. At that point, you just make a mental note of it and ask the spectator if he/she would mind waiting until the end as you have something special in mind for them. After all of the other cards have been identified, you now come back to this spectator. You remind them of the envelope that you put on display at the very beginning, and cut off the appropriate end to access the appropriate inner envelope. It’s withdrawn, and the large envelope shown empty. You now cut off the appropriate end of this small envelope. Three times out of five when you perform the routine, the card accessed will be a normal playing card with a back. You can withdraw it and handle it freely, even flashing the back. Twice in five performances, you will access the double face card. Simply pull out the card with the appropriate face showing and place it onto the envelope. This conceals the other card face on the back and you can handle and display the envelope and card quite freely. After using this method for a while, I came up with a different method which requires just one double envelope. It's described below.

I’ve got one other touch on this routine to share. As you know if you do the effect, you create the impression that each spectator gets a small random number of cards at the beginning. But that’s not true. Each spectator participating must receive exactly five cards, and you simply sight count the groups as you pass them out. This is not difficult, but in my practices and once in a performance, I accidentally gave a spectator an extra card. This throws off the routine, and problems can result. I lucked out in the show I had the error creep in and only one card thought of could not be properly determined. Perhaps this added a touch of believability. But, I did not want this to ever happen again. And so, I used a card punch to mark every fifth card in the stack. Those cards are the bottom card of each of the packets I point out. Now, as I’m passing out the packets, I feel the bottom card of each group, and I know that I’ve gotten exactly five cards. This makes for confidence during the performance.

If you do not have a card punch, I recommend that you visit the Web Site of James Riser at: [url]http://www.jamesriser.com[/url]

He makes and sells two excellent punches. And I’m sure you’ll enjoy browsing his site. He makes many wonderful magic props, including some of the nicest Cups and Balls you’ve ever seen.

If you don't want to use a punch, there are other ways to mark a card so that you can identify it by touch. See the section on “locators” on Daryl’s Encyclopedia of Card Sleights videos for a bewildering array of choices.

The double envelopes that I use were designed many years ago for an effect I marketed called [b][i]The Triple Prophecy Box[/b][/i]. If you would like a sample of the envelope along with a set of instructions on how to make it up, send $10.00 to:

[i][Address removed][/i]

I can accept either a personal check or a money order. I’ll send it out, First Class, when I receive your order. If you prefer Priority Mail shipping, include an extra $4.05. You may want to go ahead and order my effect: Mentalism 101. For $25.00, with free shipping, you'll received a gaffed deck of cards, an instructional DVD, and a sample of the double envelope. On the DVD are very clear instructions on how to make the envelope. You can read about it here:

Mentalism 101 - Dennis Loomis $25.00

The double envelope has numerous uses in magic and mentalism, of course.

[b]NOTE ONE[/b]

If you like, you can eliminate the outer double envelope by using a Himber Wallet. Simply put one double envelope in each side of the wallet, and put the wallet on display at the beginning of the effect. It’s nice to open the wallet up and show the envelope inside when you first put it on display. At the climax, just open to the appropriate side of the wallet and remove the envelope within.

[b]NOTE TWO[/b]

If you do not wish to purchase a full deck of double face cards, it’s easy enough to make the 4C/7D up yourself. Since no one will handle it other than you, it’s not really necessary to split the cards. Just glue the normal 4C and 7D back to back and use the double thickness card.

[b]NOTE THREE[/b]

I used to do this using just one double envelope and four special cards. For this version, the second spectator selection is removed from the envelope at the climax of the routine. That spectator will receive these five cards: KC, 5H, AH, 10D, and 9H. These are cards 2, 12, 22, 32, and 42 in the Aronson Stack. In one side of the double envelope is a double face card with the KC on one side and the 10D on the other. On the other side of the double envelope is a special 3-way card. It also is a double facer and has the 9H on one side. On the back of the same card is a double ended card with the AH on one end, and the 5H on the other. If the spectator thinks of either the AH or 5H, the card is displayed, but the lower 1/3 is covered with your fingertips. This can be done because the center heart pip is “mutual” to both the Five and the Ace. I had Neil Lester of Cards by Martin produce a batch of these cards, mostly for my own use. But, if you'd like to get one, here's a link to the page:

Histed Heisted Special Card $2.00@ (no longer active)

[b]NOTE FOUR[/b]

If you do not own a copy of [b][i]BOUND TO PLEASE[/b][/i], I recommend it very highly. In it you’ll learn the full workings of [b][i]Histed Heisted[/b][/i], of course, but there are many other wonderful card routines. And, this book is the logical starting point if you wish to begin your journey into the wonderful world of memorized deck magic. Simon’s complete stack is explained, along with the mnemonic associations used to memorize the deck in the first place.

Histed Heisted came up as a topic on the Magic Café recently. In response to what several other posted, I shared the following. Some day I'll come back and rewrite this entire article in a more coherent form, but for now, here's the posting I did on the Café which contains some new ideas not mentioned above:

I think it's important, in Histed Heisted, that the audience thinks you are just passing out random sized small packets of cards. The fact that each spectator gets the same number of cards is a slight hint as to the method. Simon's patter helps. Even though it's easy to hand out five cards to each spectator, you should practice this a bit so that it's very fast and easy. I push off a clump of three cards, and then two more quickly as I'm moving to each spectator. For a while I used a card punch to punch the top card of each group of five except the first. That way, I can check to see that I gave exactly five to each spectator as I'm proceeding to the next. However, I like to give the deck out to the spectator that shuffles the full deck to keep, and if I plan to do that, the punch work is not a good idea.

I just keep the two extra cards in the box when I start, and when the effect is concluded, I put the deck in the box, completing it. Then I give it out as a present.

I've never had anyone pick up on the fact that the cards I'm calling out are not the cards in my hand at the time. But there are two factors involved here. You must be absolutely on top of your memorized deck so that there is not the slighest hesitation as you call the cards. That would be suspicious. And, of course this is ACTING. You have to be convincing.

The method on my web site allows you to put the envelope in view at the beginning. I think it strengthens Simon's finale a bit, but his contribution is the recognition that the effect requires an ending. (Which was actually suggested to him by his friend David Solomon.) Doing it his way is still much stronger than the Histed Original which lacks the ending.

As to whether it's dull or that it drags. The effect is not boring... the performer might be. Work briskly and have fun with it and so will the audience. It you are still struggling with the memorized deck, you're going to be stressed out as you do it, and the audience will pick up on that.

The hardest part may be keeping track of the spectators when seating is rather informal or haphazard. I try to get a look at the audience before the show and figure out the ten people I'm going to use. I also find something noticable about spectator number six. They may be wearing a bright color, some unique piece of jewelry, etc. When the spectators from 6 to 10 raise their hand, you don't have to count from spectator one, you can start from 6.

When you have formal theatre seating, it's very easy to keep track of your helpers. But, occasionally you may find someone that doesn't want to participate. This can mess you up, trying to remember the "gaps" in your group of spectators as you look out at the first row of the audience. To minimize this problem, don't tell the group what you are planning to do in advance. Just say that you need several people to "Hold" a small group of cards. Then walk out into the audience and pass out the cards. Most people will instinctively just take anything that's handed to them. Don't ever ask if they want to participate. Don't give them the choice and things should go well.

Another little tip. It's easy to forget where you are in the routine, especially when you first start to do it. You may be looking at two raised hands, and you're not sure if you are in the "thirties" or "forties" if you know what I mean. What I do to help with this is to keep the blocks of cards I've already used in my right hand. So, I can tell by feel, that there are thirty cards in my right hand, and twenty cards in my left, for example. Since you're dealing with blocks of ten cards it's not hard to tell from the feel where you're at if you have spaced out.

I like using the cross referencing principal (Or "Princess" principal) with a memorized deck. The lack of any "crib" make the effect very clean and allows you to focus on the presentation.

Of course, this effect, and all magic or mentalism routines should be done for the appropriate audience. It's certainly not for a drinking crowd. And it's clearly not a kid's trick. It's best for an intelligent audience.

If I had learned the Aronson Stack only to do this one effect, it would have been well worth the effort.

Dennis Loomis
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 21, 2013 06:43PM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 3)[/b]

[b][i]Giobbi's Invisible Card Routine Done With The Aronson Stack[/b][/i]

[i]The Third in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

This month, we’ll look at a version Robert Giobbi’s very entertaining routine: “The Invisible Card.” You’ll find it on page 523 of Volume 3 of the “[b][i]Card College[/b][/i]” series of books. The routine has a very funny premise, and is also strong magically. In the original version, the deck is in random order, and you need to glimpse a card and then force it. Later, you’ll need to do a couple of Biddle steals. In this variation, the force is eliminated, but the deck is stacked. I use the Aronson Stack, and this explanation will assume that. You can, however, do this routine with any memorized deck.

The routine leaves the deck in memorized stack order, so it can come prior to any other routine you’re planning with a memorized deck. And, doing this effect first helps to sell the random order of the cards. Begin by false shuffling the deck. Then, place it face down on the table in front of a spectator and ask that he cut the cards. If he does not do so, ask him to complete the cut as well. Point out to him that the card now on top of the deck could be any card, since he had a free choice to cut the deck wherever he wished. He can take that card, as his selection, or he can cut the deck again if he prefers. When he’s happy with the card, have him take it, look at it, remember it, and show it to other members of the audience. Caution him not to let you see it. As he’s doing this, pick up the deck and glimpse the bottom card. It’s probably best to use the all around square glimpse for the purpose. Next, undercut approximately half the deck, and hold a break below the card that you just glimpsed. The spectator’s card is one card “higher” in your memorized deck stack, so remember the card the spectator chose. For this example, lets assume that you glimpsed the 7D. That tells you that the spectator chose the 8C. (In Aronson stack order.) Ask the spectator to put the card face down on the table. Then state that you want to lose it in a small group. Cut the deck at your break and table the top half. Now remove four cards from the top of the deck and place them onto the spectator’s card. If all is well, the four cards you placed on the selection will be the 3S, AD, 7S, and 5S. (Numbers 17-20 in the Aronson Stack.) Have the spectator shuffle the packet of five cards, and when they’re mixed, he can hand them to you. Turn the packet of cards face up and cut the selected card to the center of the packet. You will now establish the comedy premise of the routine by explaining that you will try to determine which card is the chosen one by watching the spectators face as you ask a series of question. Explain that the spectator must do his best to keep a “poker face” and he must also answer no to everything that you ask him. Follow Giobbi’s routine to milk the fun out of this. When ready, you place the packet of five cards onto the half deck that you’ve been holding all of the time. The half-deck is face down, with the five-card packet face up on top. You then peel each card off into your left hand, one at a time. Each time you ask the spectator whether the card he sees is his card. He answers “No” each time. As you pull the third card (the chosen 8C) into your left hand on top of the two cards already there, hold a break under the 8C. As you come back to get card number four, you Biddle steal the 8C to the bottom of the entire packet, and come away pulling the fourth card into your left hand. After the fifth card is legitimately taken into your left hand, it is holding a group of four face up cards. The right hand is holding the half-deck in biddle position and the cards are face down except for the 8C which is face up on the bottom. Place this half-deck onto the other half of the deck that has been sitting face down on the table. This puts the selected card face up into the face down deck. You now finish the routine as in the Giobbi original except for one difference. After you take out the “Invisible” card, the packet of cards is shown to contain only four cards. Turn them face up to show that the selected card is no longer there. At this point, casually rearrange the cards into memorized deck order, as if just displaying the cards freely. Turn this packet face down and place it onto the deck on the table. Finish as in the Giobbi routine, by pretending to pick up the invisible card, and tossing it into the deck. It lands upside down. As proof, spread through the deck and show the 8C reversed in the center. Remove it and place it on either the top or bottom of the deck. The deck now needs only to be cut once, between cards 1 and 52, to return it to memorized deck order. If you keep a short card at position 1 or 52, this is easy to do.

In Simon Aronson’s later book: “[b][i]TRY THE IMPOSSIBLE[/b][/i],” on page 175 is a trick also called “The Invisible Card.” As in the Giobbi effect, one card becomes invisible and reappears reversed in the deck. However, in Simon’s version, the card is randomly selected by a spectator who simply names any card. Also, the card vanishes from the full deck, not from a small packet. Simon replaces the Biddle steal with another procedure for “vanishing” the card. I recommend that you also study Simon’s routine. There are two good reasons for doing so. First, you may prefer Simon’s handling of the effect. I like my version of the Giobbi routine a little better, because the original comedy premise is lots of fun, and because the vanish of the selected card from the small packet is much faster than looking through the entire deck. But, the other reason to look up Simon’s trick is that he has a great line that you can use in any of the versions outlined here. I’m not going to tell you, because I think you should have “Try the Impossible” in your library if you’re going to do memorized deck magic. The line is the sixth line of text on page 176.
If you don’t have a copy of “[b][i]Try the Impossible[/b][/i],” you can order it from Loomis Magic.

Next month we’ll be looking Stephen Minsch’s “[b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i].” This is a full act with a deck of cards; the magician is legitimately blindfolded from start to finish. The original effect had it’s own stack, but we’ll see how to do it with the Aronson stack instead. That way, you can reset it quickly and easily without learning a new stack.

As always, I'm happy to hear from other magicians that do memorized deck work. If you have any ideas, tips, or full routines that you'd like to contribute to this series, drop me a note at:

deloomis@mindspring.com
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 21, 2013 06:49PM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 4)[/b]

[b][i]Stephen Minch's Eyeless in Gaza
Done With The Aronson Stack[/b][/i]

[i]The Fourth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

This month I’ll be reworking Stephen Minch’s routine “[b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i].” The booklet was published in 1984 by Micky Hades International, and remains in print. A local magic dealer was able to get one for me through Micky Hades. This is a complete blindfolded card act in eight phases. Each phase becomes stronger and more baffling than the last. It is a remarkable piece of work in which the blindfold is genuine. That is, you actually cannot see throughout the entire demonstration. It requires some practice, as does all good card magic, and it also requires that you have some punch work in the deck, and one card corner shorted. To find out more, you’ll have to get the manuscript if you don’t already have it. I cannot recommend this too highly if you do any parlor work. The routine would also make a great demonstration for a service club’s luncheon or breakfast meeting.

Finally, there is a set up of cards required. What I’ve discovered is that instead of learning a new set up, it can be done using the Aronson stack for those of you that already use it. And that means that you could precede [b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i] with any other Aronson stack effects that you like as long as they retain, at a minimum, the first eighteen cards in the Aronson Stack. (From the Jack of Spades, to the Ace of Diamonds.) With that stack of cards intact, and the appropriate “work” put into the deck, you’re ready to go. Even if you intend to do [b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i] as a separate routine, if you already know the Aronson stack, I recommend this handling. You are then in a position to reset the stack any time and anywhere just from memory. If you were to find yourself without the necessary cards, in some distant city, using a needle or pin and a set of nail clippers you can put the necessary work into any deck in a few minutes, and you’re all set.

Incidentally, by sheer happenstance, in [b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i], the Jack of Spades is chosen as the card that’s corner shorted. Since this is card number one in the Aronson stack, I already have the same card prepared in all of my decks. I use a scallop or belly short. You can, however, use a standard corner short. As Jay Marshall is fond of saying: “It’s a matter of personal preference and little consequence.”

There will be just a few minor changes necessary to the [b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i] routine.

Assuming that you have the necessary work in the deck, and that it is set in Aronson Stack Order, to get set for the routine, just cut the Ace of Diamonds to the face of the deck. Since you know that it is 18 cards down from the top of the deck, this is quite easy. It’s not hard to quickly sight count 18 cards if you do it in six groups of three. Then you can cut the deck at that spot, and just do a glimpse of the bottom card to make sure it is the Ace of Diamonds. I use an all around square glimpse for this. Alternatively, you can spread through the cards face up until you reach the Ace. Since you know where it is, this is very fast. You then cut at that point. If you’re fast at thumb counting, you can just thumb count 18 cards and cut at that point. This can be done as the spectators are reacting to your previous effect and will go unnoticed, particularly if you drop your hand to your side.

Perform the first three phases of [b][i]Eyeless in Gaza[/b][/i] exactly as in the Minch booklet. Phase four is also performed the same, except that the card you name aloud will be the King of Clubs, not the six of spades.

Phase five is the remarkable poker hand demonstration. For this version, you begin the same way. After the two poker hands are dealt, you will change the procedure just a bit. As in the original, ask the spectators if either of them has an opening hand, that is, a pair of jacks or better. The spectator on your left will respond affirmatively since he’s holding a pair of aces. The other spectator has a terrible hand, the 5C, 9S, 3H, 8D, and 10S. These are cards 3, 5, 7, 9 and 11 in the Aronson stack, which will help you to remember them. You now state that you are going to help spectator number two since he’s the underdog. Instruct spectator number one to keep his pair of Aces and throw in the other three cards. (Remember you have not been told what pair he’s holding, so your knowledge of them is effective in and of itself.) He discards three cards and you deal him three more, but face up on the table. Comment that you didn’t promise to help him. The three indifferent cards, in fact, do not help and he ends up with just the pair of aces. You then turn your attention to spectator number two. You tell him to pay close attention. He is to keep his eight and three and discard the other three cards. Again, you are divulging information that you seemingly cannot know. You then deal him three fresh cards. Inform the spectators that he now wins, because he has two pair, threes and eights. Get the spectator to verify this by holding up his cards.

This last phase is “show stopper” caliber in and of itself, but you have three, even stronger sequences to go.

Phase 6 will be done exactly as in the original. However, the prediction in the sealed envelope must state that the Jack of Spades will be found 17 cards from the top of the deck. Incidentally, in this version, because of the way that phase 5 has been reworked, there will be no adjustments needed, and you can just reassemble the deck and proceed. (You still need to overhand shuffle the bottom card of the cards in your hand to the top, as in the original.)

You are now set to do the 7th phase (the presentation of [b][i]Out of This World[/b][/i] while blindfolded) and the 8th phase wherein you show your own ability to determine the colors. No changes are necessary.

I cannot take much credit for the strength of this truly unbelievable routine. I’ve simply made it possible to do it using the Aronson stack. It does, of course, destroy the stack. I don’t consider this a disadvantage, however, since the routine is so strong that you really have to end your act with it.

Stephen mentions that the act may be changed in many ways. I think it’s perfect as he originally worked it out, and the only change I can imagine is that you may wish to shorten it for some performances. What I’d recommend, in that regard, is to eliminate one or perhaps two of the card revelations at the beginning. The third phase, although based on the color separation principle, is the revelation of two selected cards, and makes an effective opening to the Routine. If you need to shorten it further, I’d recommend that you eliminate Phase 7, the version of [b][i]Out of This World[/b][/i]. While it’s very strong, it is one of the longer segments. If you do this, I’d begin phase 8 by having your helpers try to identify the colors of a few cards after the deck has been shuffled by one of them. They will get some right, and some wrong, but you’re establishing how difficult it is to be always right. Then dismiss them and end the routine with your own demonstration of your uncanny ability to determine the colors accurately while blindfolded.

If you don’t have a card punch, I recommend that you visit the Web Site of James Riser at:

http://www.jamesriser.com

He makes and sells an excellent one. And I’m sure you’ll enjoy browsing his site. He makes many wonderful magic props, including some of the nicest Cups and Balls you’ve ever seen.

As always, I’m interseted in your thoughts on memorized deck magic. Drop me a note at deloomis@mindspring.com with comments, questions, etc.

And, feel free to visit my website at:

http://www.loomismagic.com
Message: Posted by: silvercup (Aug 21, 2013 07:11PM)
It's a very cool thing you are doing but this is not the place.
Message: Posted by: Steve Suss (Aug 21, 2013 08:02PM)
Robert, I'm really glad you're doing this. Dennis had a wealth of knowledge on memorized deck and he was very generous in sharing. His work should be kept alive for others to enjoy and benefit from. Thanks.
Steve
Message: Posted by: Atom3339 (Aug 21, 2013 10:31PM)
Silvercup, Where else should it be posted? This is wonderful stuff Dennis gave us. I personally really appreciate it.
Message: Posted by: george1953 (Aug 21, 2013 10:59PM)
Love it,well done . I will enjoy Reading these articles.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 22, 2013 09:14AM)
I'm glad you guys are enjoying the articles.

Silvercup, not sure why you don't think these should be posted here but if they shouldn't the Café moderators will take care of it.

Exposure did come to mind, but considering that the description of this forum talks about "memorized decks" I'm not really concerned (especially considering the effort that is required to memorize a deck). Dennis had these articles posted freely as well and most of what I have read so far requires the original books mentioned in the articles.
Message: Posted by: Vlad_77 (Aug 22, 2013 11:28AM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-22 10:14, Robert P. wrote:
I'm glad you guys are enjoying the articles.

Silvercup, not sure why you don't think these should be posted here but if they shouldn't the Café moderators will take care of it.

Exposure did come to mind, but considering that the description of this forum talks about "memorized decks" I'm not really concerned (especially considering the effort that is required to memorize a deck). Dennis had these articles posted freely as well and most of what I have read so far requires the original books mentioned in the articles.
[/quote]

RobertP,

These are wonderful and many thanks for taking the time to post these. I am guessing that silvercup feels that Secret Sessions would be a more appropriate place. But, as you say, the mods will take care of it if they think it more appropriate.

That said, I DO hope that wherever these articles end up, The Café moderators will have the wisdom to "sticky" these. Great work!!!!!

Best,
Vlad
Message: Posted by: Waterloophai (Aug 22, 2013 02:32PM)
I hope they go to "secret Sessions". A while ago, I too have saved all this articles on my PC. I understand your good intentions, but please, place them elswhere (Secret Sessions).
Here it is exposure.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 22, 2013 04:14PM)
Here is my dilemma. Do I want any kind of exposure? Of course not. But I think sometimes we worry about it a little too much. Heck, we have a sticky in the “Workers” section about finding more information concerning ‘DLs’ yet in the main post it is spelled out numerous times. But even if it wasn’t, anyone would easily be able to tell what was going on from the context of the posts.

So then I look at these articles, and what is really being exposed. As I mentioned before, from the forum description we already know that memorized decks are involved. While Dennis gives advice and his take on certain routines, I don’t really see how a layman is going to take away anything from this (plus he/she would have to do a lot of research just to figure out what is being talked about, i.e. the terminology and the effects themselves). Is a magician going to learn about someone else’s material? I don’t think so, because from what I’ve seen Dennis always directs them to the original source.

I just don’t believe anything is really being exposed. Heck, even someone familiar with memory deck will still need to take the time and effort to find the resources and learn the material in the articles. Memorized deck work is still a very niche area of card magic. Out of the seven forums on card magic here on the Café, memorized deck magic ranks fifth in popularity, right above jumbo/mini card and self-working effects. I just think there is more ‘exposure’ happening in the main page of the workers (which I don’t have a problem with) then there is hidden in these articles.

My concern is let’s say we move these to “Secret Sessions”. Well, being the niche area of magic that this is they will probably not be seen anymore after a few days and those who normally visit “Shuffled not Stirred” may not ever know about these resources provided by Dennis. A search on the Café search engine won’t help either because you have to specify the forum (and a search on this forum would bring up nothing). Maybe a compromise that might make everyone happy is to have a sticky in this forum that points people to the thread on the articles in “Secret Sessions”? We would need Café moderators to help with this.
Message: Posted by: Waterloophai (Aug 22, 2013 05:36PM)
[quote]
On 2013-08-22 17:14, Robert P. wrote:
Maybe a compromise that might make everyone happy is to have a sticky in this forum that points people to the thread on the articles in “Secret Sessions”? We would need Café moderators to help with this.
[/quote]

That would be a very good solution.
Message: Posted by: JanForster (Aug 22, 2013 05:47PM)
Although I saved all articles time ago I do agree to move this thread downstairs. It would be enough to point from here to there. Jan
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Aug 24, 2013 03:32PM)
I discussed the situation with the Café administration and asked about it being moved and it was decided that the thread would remain in "Shuffled Not Stirred".
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Sep 7, 2013 09:18AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 5)

[i]Gene Anderson's Si Stebbins Routine
Done With The Aronson Stack[/b]

The Fifth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

More years ago than either of us would care to admit, my pal Gene Anderson and I worked together on a routine he was putting together using the Si Stebbins Stack. Gene has honed and polished his presentation over the years, and has also published it. He sells it at his magic lectures and you can get a copy directly from him Gene at gene4864@earthlink.net, or even better, just send a check for $6 to Gene Anderson, 3309 Isabella St, Midland, MI 48640. If you’re not in the U.S., better check with him first to see how much shipping will be. Gene would be the first to admit that he’s not really a card magician. But this routine is one of the strongest things I’ve ever seen done with a deck of cards. To lay people, who see this, Gene is a GREAT card worker. And, it’s fooled a lot of magicians who should know better.

My contribution to Gene’s routine was to suggest the ending. The effect he uses as the final phase was created by Nick Trost. Nick wrote it up in his TOPS column about 1970. One year, when I was performing close up at the annual one-day magic convention in Galion, Ohio, Nick was in the audience. I performed this effect, and afterwards Nick not only complimented me on it, but also wanted to know where it came from! When I reminded him that it was one of his own creations, we both had a good laugh. (I wish that I had created so much strong magic that I might forget one of my routines.) That also reminded him to include it in his book: [b][i]The Card Magic of Nick Trost[/b][/i] published in 1997. It’s called the Automatic Lie Speller and you can find it on page 155.

What I want to address here is the body of Gene’s routine, prior to the Nick Trost ending. While I love the routine, there are some distinct advantages gained by doing it with a memorized deck instead of the Si Stebbins setup.

Gene’s full patter is in his booklet, and I encourage you to get it from him. It’s a delightfully simple way to present a series of card revelations and it’s based on the senses of sight and sound. It begins with the old saw: [i]The hand is quicker than the eye[/i]. The routine is in five phases. In phase one Gene quickly has a card selected and he openly looks through the deck, claiming that he doesn’t see one particular card. Of course the one he names is the one the spectator is holding. He repeats this two or three times. It’s fast and very strong for magicians and lay people alike. First, he dispels any idea of a stack with a quick Haymow or Erdnase False Shuffle. (Later I’ll explain my apparently unique handling of this.) A spectator takes one card, and Gene cuts the deck at this spot. However, the cut is done quickly and smoothly and at the same time that the spectator is showing the card around. I’ve Gene seen fool some knowledgeable card magicians because they don’t see the cut of the cards. Now when Gene looks through the deck, the card adjacent to the selection is right on the bottom of the deck. Since the selected card is one higher in the Stebbins stack, that’s the card he names. This is just as fast and easy with a memorized deck, of course. And, Gene cannot openly spread through the deck because that would reveal the red black alternation of the cards. With a memorized deck, like the Aronson stack, this is not a problem. So, in my handling, I initially spread the cards face up, commenting that they’re already well mixed, but to be sure, we’ll shuffle them some more. Then I do my handling of the Erdnase shuffle.

As soon as the named card is confirmed, Gene retrieves the card and replaces it on either the top or bottom of the stack. This is repeated two or three times, working very rapidly.

The second phase of the routine is actually just like the first mechanically; it’s just that Gene apparently determines the identity of the selected card by listening to the deck as he riffles down it with his thumb. Apparently he does not look at the cards at all. Actually, as the card is being shown around, Gene cuts the deck at the spot where the card is withdrawn, and glimpses it as he brings it up to his ear. With the deck along side his ear, Gene makes a big show of not looking at the cards at all. Of course, with the brief glimpse, he can determine the selected card. The strength of this phase is very much dependent on convincing the audience that the cards are not looked at. Timing is critical. Practice the cut and glimpse action and bringing the deck up to your ear so that it is all one continuous action. Gene also does this phase two or three times, working very quickly. I recently saw Gene do this for a group of very knowledgeable magicians and afterwards one confided to me that they thought he was doing a classic force!

In phase 3, Gene shows that he can determine how many cards are in a cut off portion of the deck. Ostensibly it’s done by listening to the sound of the individual clicks made when the packet is riffled next to his ear. This phase is quite strong, but requires some quick calculating. Gene simplifies things by cutting the cards himself, and, by cutting near the center of the deck. I’m not going to explain the calculations used to determine the number of cards in a packet when the deck is in SS order. I am going to suggest that if you have a memorized deck, this becomes much stronger. First, you can have a spectator cut off the block of cards for you. It can contain any number, but when you site the bottom card of the packet, its stack number tells you instantly how many cards are in the packet. Gene will cover the thinking time by riffling down the packet with his thumb fairly slowly, and if he’s not ready, he will riffle through a second time. It’s still a strong effect in his hands, but if you’ve already memorized a deck it can be much stronger and certainly a lot easier to do.

I always have the top card in my Aronson Stack belly or scallop shorted. This makes it easy to cut the deck back to starting order at any time. So, in the first two phases the deck gets cut several times, and is apparently shuffled. Just before I go into phase three, I just cut the cards at the short and I’m all set.

Again, some of the strength of this phase is that you do not apparently look at any cards. While I have a spectator cut the packet off for me, I misdirect my glimpse at the bottom card. As I reach out to take the packet from the spectator, I ask him if he can tell by the weight how many cards the packet contains. As I finish the question, I have the packet in my hands, and as he responds, all eyes go to him briefly. At this moment I get my glimpse and continue bringing the cards right up alongside my ear. I mimic Gene’s action of not looking at the cards as I “count” the clicks.

Gene will sometimes repeat this phase, and the second time he again cuts the cards himself and tries to cut exactly ¼ of the deck. Since he will probably only be off by a card or two, the calculations are quite simple. I almost always repeat this phase and again have a spectator cut off a packet and hand it to me. Again, no calculations are required; your memorization work pays off with an effortless performance.

In the fourth phase, Gene now shows that he can locate any card named by listening to the sounds the cards make as he again riffles them alongside his ear. A spectator names any card they wish, Gene picks up the deck, listens, and then announces that the card is number 22. (Or whatever.) If you’ve tried to do this with the Si Stebbins deck, you know that the calculations are a little tricky. Again, the memorized deck makes this so very easy to accomplish. I usually give the deck another Haymow shuffle before this phase, and then cut at the short card. So now when a card is named, I simply name its stack number as the location and then count down to it. No glimpse is required, of course. Gene will often repeat this phase, and I do too. But the second time, I do it a bit differently. I take out a pocket-handkerchief and blindfold myself before the spectator names the card. I then name the stack number, and count the cards down onto the table still blindfolded until I get to the card. I drop the rest of the deck to the table to free up one hand. The free hand removes the blindfold (its just on with a single knot) and holds it up as the other hand holds up the card to show that it’s the one that was names. Perfect applause position.

That phase may destroy the stack, but it’s a small price to pay for this routine. I usually end right there anyway. If it’s necessary, I can count the cards from hand to hand, retaining the stack order, but it’s much more dramatic just tossing them onto the table willy-nilly while blindfolded.

Gene, as mentioned above, concludes with the Nick Trost [b][i]“Automatic Lie Speller.”[/b][/i]

I believe that I originally learned the Haymow shuffle from [b][i]Royal Road to Card Magic[/b][/i] by Hugard and Braue. I’ve done it for years, and was rather surprised, in discussing it with another magician that I was doing it differently. I checked Gene’s instructions and also the Royal Road again, and indeed, what I’m doing is somewhat different. I don’t know how I fell into this action. Perhaps I read the instructions wrong in the first place. But, it works just the same even though it looks quite different. For completeness, here’s how I do it:

The deck is held in the left hand dealing position and a bunch of cards are pushed off the top into the right hand. The number is unimportant, but I push about half of the deck. The left hand is raised until it’s just above the right hand and the right fingers push a small block of cards from the top onto the bottom of the left-hand packet. This is probably six or eight cards, but it’s not important. The left hand is lowered back to its original position, and the left fingers push a small block of cards onto the bottom of the right hands cards. Again the left hand is lowered and the right hand pushes off a small block of cards onto the bottom of the left-hand cards. If you’re pushing off roughly the same amount of cards each time (except for the first time, of course) then the packets in the hands remain about the same size and you can keep going as long as you like.

When you stop, if you have a corner or belly short in your deck, you can easily cut the deck back to starting order. This is not necessary for the first two phases of the routine. You will want to do that for the third and fourth phase.

Like Gene, you can end with another kind of effect. The bad news is that you can’t do the Automatic Lie Speller with a memorized deck, but the good news is that you have your choice of dozens of great routines with, for example, the Aronson stack. If you would like to do something similar to the Trost Routine, I would suggest [b][i]Aces Awry[/b][/i] from Simon Aronson’s latest book: [b][i]Try the Impossible.[/b][/i] It’s another spelling effect where you spell to a selection (in this case, an ace that is forced.) But, along the way you also find the other three Aces.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Sep 7, 2013 10:23AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 6)

[i]A Few Ideas on the Birthday Book And Additional Thoughts on the Haymow Shuffle[/b]

The Sixth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

This month I want to share some thoughts on two items. First, a brief look at one of my favorite routines with the Memorized Deck: [b]The Birthday Book[/b]. Then a few more thoughts on my handling of the Haymow shuffle which I described last month.

[b]The Diary Trick[/b] or [b]Birthday Book[/b] was created by Alex Elmsley. It is a brilliant concept. You show a full year diary and open it to show that written into the diary, for every date of the year, is the name of a playing card. The diary is set aside and a spectator is asked to reveal the month and date of his birth. The same spectator selects a playing card from a deck, and when he opens the diary and looks up his birthday, the very same card is written in for that date. Elmsley used a repeating bank of only ten cards, and the book therefore could not be looked at very carefully. The 1st, 11th, 21st, and 31st dates all had the same card written in. As did the 2nd, 12th, etc. Simon Aronson came up with the idea of using his memorized stack in conjunction with the Birthday book. His routine is excellent and you may want to look it up in his book: [i][b]Simply Simon[/i][/b]. You’ll find it on page 96 under the title: [b]Happy Birthday[/b]. Simon’s idea is to use the numerical value of the month (January equals 1, February 2, and so on,) and add it to the date to come up with a total for each date of the year. You then write into that date, the card that falls in that position in your memorized deck. For example, my birthday is August 31. Adding 8 (for the eighth month) to 31, we get the number 39. In the Aronson Stack, number 39 is the six of hearts, so that’s what you write in for that date. In this way you fill up the entire diary and can calculate in your head, almost instantly, what card is written in for each date of the year. You simply force that card.

You could use a regular deck, but the effect is strengthened enormously if the selection appears to be very fair and you do not look through the deck at all. By using a deck that is already set up in Aronson Stack order, you can quickly and easily force ANY card without having to look through the deck to find the force card you need. Simon has his own solution as to how to do this for the effect: [b]Two Beginnings[/b] in his book [i][b]Try the Impossible[/i][/b]. Its on page 172. Mike Close uses a different procedure that you’ll find in his book: [i][b]Workers 5[/i][/b], p 156. They are both excellent, and my handling borrows a little from each of them. Let’s use my birthday... August 31. I simply add 8 and 31 in my head and get 39. I don’t have to even worry about what card it is, I just need to know that it’s 39 cards down from the top. I’m going to force that card using a simple cull. But first, I need to get that card about five to ten cards from the top of the deck. This is NOT critical. All is not lost if it’s four from the top, or thirteen from the top, but five to ten is what I prefer. Prior to offering the spectator a selection, I just give the deck a casual cut. It’s completely fair and makes the selection appear to be a random one. But, the cut was an estimation: I just tried to cut from five to ten cards above the 39th card. (In other words, I try to cut from 29 to 34 cards down from the top.) Even if you’ve never done any estimation work, this is not difficult. And, you can relax because if you don’t hit in that range you can easily fix the situation. As I square up the cards after the cut I do the all around square glimpse to get a quick look at the bottom card. You may use any glimpse you like; you just need to know what the bottom (or top) card of the deck is. Let's say that I see the King of Hearts. That’s great, I know it’s the 30th card in the stack, and I want to cull the 39th card. As I begin to explain to the spectator that he is to touch a card, but not remove it, I begin to push blocks of cards over with my left thumb. It’s quite easy to push three cards at a time and you just watch and count. With three blocks of cards, the card on the left in the last batch of three will be the card you want to force. You cull it under the spread, and your work is almost done. As far as the spectators are concerned, the trick hasn’t even begun. With the force card riding under the spread you continue to thumb cards over to the right and when the spectator wishes, he touches one card. At this point, break the spread, with the touched card as the bottom card in the right hand. At this point, stress that the spectator can change his mind if he likes You can go further into the deck, or back some, whatever he wishes. Usually they decline to change their mind, but this emphasizes the fairness of the selection. If they do want to change their mind, reassemble the deck in a slightly spread condition with the force card still hidden under the spread and let them touch a different card. When they do, again break the spread with their selection on the bottom. (At least as far as the spectators are concerned.) You continue to offer them the chance to change their mind until they decline to do so. When they do, table or pocket the cards in your left hand. You now ask the spectator to look at his selection, and you quickly square the spread cards in your right hand and tip it up to show them the bottom card. Done casually, this is completely deceptive, although the force card has been switched for their selection. As an “afterthought” decide to let everyone see the card, and remove the bottom card and show it around. You now either table that card, or if working standing up, you can put the card into your breast pocket, but leave the majority of the card in view, facing the spectators. The deck is reassembled and attention is focused on the Birthday Book itself. The spectator is allowed to look at the book. Finally, ask them to look at their own birthday and read aloud the card that is written there. It is the card they freely selected. This is a fairly quick effect, and for intelligent spectators, it is absolutely mind-boggling. To reset, you have only to replace that one card back in it’s proper position. An easy way to do this is to fan the deck. Since you know right where it has to go (in our example, the 39th position) you fan so that you can see the faces of the cards in that area. It is very fast and easy to spot where the chosen card has to go, and you take the card from your pocket or the table and plunge it into the deck. To the spectators it appears that you just stuck it back in a random location.

But what if your original cut is off? You simply cut again to correct the situation. For example, lets say in our example that when I glimpsed the bottom card that I saw that it was the Ten of Hearts. Since that’s the thirty-eighth card in the Aronson Stack, I’ve cut too deeply. The card I want to force is on the very top of the deck, an impossible position to cull from. I cut a very thin block from the bottom of the top (trying for five to ten cards). Because the cut was so thin, I immediately follow it with a false cut. Again, I glimpse the bottom card and know where I’m at. On the other hand, lets say that after the first cut I glimpse the bottom card and it’s the Queen of Hearts. That’s the 26th card, and my force card is way down at position 39. I could spread over the thirteen cards before I cull but I’d prefer to cull a little sooner than that. So, I just cut a thin group of cards from the top of the deck to the bottom. Again I glimpse and know where I’m at.

[i]August 21, 2005. I've revisited this write up to add a couple of additional points on this force. First, Simon discusses his handling of the cull force in conjunction with the effect: [b]Two Beginnings[/b] in the book [i][b]"Try the Impossible."[/i][/b] (Page 171) There is another variation of the cull force in Roberto Giobbi's book [i][b]"Card College Vol 1"[/i][/b] on page 191. My handling is very much like the Giobbi version, except that I often work in venues where I don't have a table. Therefore, I can't table the left hands packet. I find it easy to still put the right hands cards into the left hand, squaring them up in the process, but with the selected card outjogged.

There are other ways to force a card from a stacked deck. I'll mention two of the possibilities. Both will assume that you have made an estimated cut and the card you need to force is the sixth from the top. If you do a second deal, you start to deal single cards onto a pile on the table. The first five are dealt from the top, and as you're dealing them, you explain to the spectator that you want him to say stop whenever you wish. In this way, he has no chance to stop you until after you reach the force card. After the first five cards are dealt, you start to deal seconds, and you keep dealing seconds until he says stop. When he does, you hand him the top card of the deck as his "selection."

I would suggest that you deal stud seconds, turning each card face up as you deal. (Of course, you do the same with the first five single cards.) In this way, you keep your deck in order, but, more importantly, when the spectator says stop, the face up card is dropped on the table. Now, it's more natural to hand them the unseen card on the top of the remaining cards in your left hand.

There's another excellent way to force a card assuming that you've cut it to a known position a little way down from the top of the deck. It uses the JB Kard Kop invented by Johnny Benzais. It was explained in Harry Lorayne book: [i][b]Close-Up Card Magic[/i][/b]. That's long out of print, but fortunately Harry has included most of the text of that book and several others in his [i][b]"Classic Collection”[/i][/b]. This is available directly from Harry Lorayne. With this move, you deal the cards above the force card straight until you get to it. Then you "Kop" the card and keep dealing. When the spectator says stop, you drop both of the cards in your right hand onto the tabled cards, and have the spectator take the top one as their selection. In this version, you cannot deal face up, and so you have reversed the order of the small group of cards on the table. This is easily corrected. Here's one way: as the spectator looks at his card and shows it to the other spectators you pick up the dealt cards and casually give them an overhand shuffle. You just run then singly, reversing them, to restore the sequence of your stack. Drop them onto the tabled remainder of the deck. After the trick is over, you will only have to return the selected card to it's proper place in your stack.[/i]

Both Mike Close and Simon Aronson use a patter ploy that I did not like. They talk about the difficulty of finding the right birthday card for someone. This is word play, a birthday card, in our culture, means a greeting card from Hallmark (or their competitors) that says “Happy Birthday” on it. It has nothing to do with a deck of playing cards. I found this confusing and not particularly entertaining. And, I wanted to get away from having to hand write 365 cards into a diary. For one thing, my handwriting is terrible. And so, I came up with the idea that there actually is a Lucky Playing Card for every day of the year. Why not? We each have our own Zodiac Sign, or Birthstone, even the appropriate flower... why not a lucky playing Card. And so, I printed out and bound a little fake booklet. The cover reads:

[b]Hallmark Greeting Cards
Presents
YOUR LUCKY PLAYING CARD
The Lucky Playing Card for Every Birthday of the Year[/b]

With a little artwork, and printed on my printer, it looks quite official. I claim that I picked it up at a Hallmark store, and suggest the spectators can do the same. I know this is a minor infringement on Hallmark’s name, but as I do not make these in quantity and sell them, I doubt if I’ll ever have any legal problems. But it gives a kind of “official” atmosphere to the premise. Inside, the months, dates, and playing cards are all printed out, one month to a page. And, if I ever loose it, or it becomes too soiled, I can just print out a new one.

Whatever version of the effect you use, Mike Close’s, Simon Aronson’s, or mine, I believe you will find it to be a very strong effect made even stronger by using a memorized deck.

Last month, I explained my own version of the Haymow shuffle. For completeness, I am going to include that description before I explain how it can be used to move a block of cards of any size from top to bottom:

[i]I believe that I originally learned the Haymow shuffle from [b]Royal Road to Card Magic[/b] by Hugard and Braue. I’ve done it for years, and was rather surprised, in discussing it with another magician that I was doing it differently. I checked Gene’s instructions and also the Royal Road again, and indeed, what I’m doing is somewhat different. I don’t know how I fell into this action. Perhaps I read the instructions wrong in the first place. But, it works just the same even though it looks quite different. For completeness, here’s how I do it:

The deck is held in the left hand dealing position and a bunch of cards are pushed off the top into the right hand. The number is unimportant, but I push about half of the deck. The left hand is raised until it’s just above the right hand and the right fingers push a small block of cards from the top onto the bottom of the left-hand packet. This is probably six or eight cards, but it’s not important. The left hand is lowered back to its original position, and the left fingers push a small block of cards onto the bottom of the right hands cards. Again the left hand is lowered and the right hand pushes off a small block of cards onto the bottom of the left-hand cards. If you’re pushing off roughly the same amount of cards each time (except for the first time, of course) then the packets in the hands remain about the same size and you can keep going as long as you like.

When you stop, if you have a corner or belly short in your deck, you can easily cut the deck back to starting order.[/i]

If you try that, deck in hand, you’ll find it’s easy to do. So now, let’s use it to accomplish something: moving a block of cards of any size from top to bottom. My primary use for it is as a way to get ready for the Simon Aronson [b]Three Phase Poker Deal[/b] from his book: [i][b]Bound to Please[/i][/b]. I do not intend to explain that routine, but you must begin the routine with the ten of spades on the bottom of the deck. This is the eleventh card in the Aronson Stack. I do this in the process of the Haymow Shuffle. The deck is cut approximately in half, but the upper half goes into the left hand. To do this, here’s one simple method: With the deck held in dealing position in the left hand, the right hand comes over and takes the entire deck from above in Biddle Grip. The right index finger swivel cuts approximately half of the cards back into the left hand. This is the original top half of the deck of course. With some help with the fingertips and thumb of the left hand, the cards in the right hand are moved into a dealing position in that hand as well.

You begin the Haymow Shuffle by pushing a block of cards with the left thumb off of the top of its cards onto the bottom of the left hands cards. But instead of a random number of cards, push off exactly three cards. This is very easy. Now the right hand pushes off a block of cards from the top of it’s half onto the bottom of the left-hand cards. This can be any number; I usually do four or five. Again, the process is reversed and the left hand pushes off a block of cards. Again, it pushes off exactly three. And again the right hand pushes a random number of cards off the top of its pile onto the bottom of the left hands cards. The third time that the left hand pushes cards into the right hand, it again pushes exactly three cards. At this point, you’ve pushed a total of nine cards off of the cards in the left-hand pile. Again the right hand pushes any number of cards onto the bottom of the cards in the left-hand pile. Finally, the left hand pushes just two cards onto the bottom of the cards in the right hand. The right hand now places its entire pile onto the bottom of the left hands cards and the deck is squared. You have transferred exactly 11 cards from top to bottom, no other mixing has been done, and you have the ten of spades on the bottom ready to do the Aronson Poker Deal.

You can move any number of cards you wish. For example, if you wanted to move fifteen cards from the top to the bottom, the left hand pushes four cards in it’s first “turn.” four more cards the next time, four more cards the third time, and finally just three cards. To move larger groups, you may want to move five or even six cards each time. Keep a running count in your head. In the above example, as I do the shuffle, in my head I say: "Three, six, nine, and eleven."

I hope you find this simple procedure a useful addition to your arsenal. As always, I invite comments, suggestions, ideas, questions, etc. You may reach me at:

deloomis@mindspring.com

And, feel free to visit my web site to see those commercial items that Loomis Magic has available.

Loomis Magic has some of the lowest prices on magic DVD’s on the Web. If you’re in the market for DVD’s I invite you to visit the site and see our great prices and selection. We promise to take very good care of our customers... you are the lifeblood of our business.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Sep 7, 2013 10:33AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 7)

[i]A New Version of Harry Anderson's Yard Sale Deck using the Aronson Stack [/b]

The Seventh in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

This month I’ll share my version of Harry Anderson’s [b]“Yard Sale Deck.”[/b] I saw Harry do this in a lecture at the Magic Castle many years ago and found it to be a very direct and clean mental effect. I’ll describe his version first, and then share my own reworking based on a memorized deck. I’m not claiming that my version is better. It’s a different effect. Harry’s is faster; mine adds a second element of deception.

In Harry’s original version, he holds up a deck of cards and explains that he found it at a yard sale on the way to the show. He explains that he bought it at a pretty good price, and invites an audience member to see if they can guess that price. By way of help, he suggests that they name any two-digit number from 1 to 99. For our example, let’s say that they choose 41. He gets them to repeat the number in a nice loud voice and them tosses them the deck. (Which is in its box, of course.) He asks them to hold it up and show everyone the price tag. It’s one of those little round press-apply dots. But written on the dot is: “41 Cents.” The method is simple... just a nail writer. The boxed deck makes a good writing surface and it doesn’t take much practice to learn to write digits. You have the time to do this when the spectator repeats their number. And, people are looking at them at that moment anyway. The cent sign is prewriten before the show, of course, but do it using the nail writer so that it will match. To reset, you only have to pull off the press-apply dot and put on a new one.

My variation is to have the deck of cards in memorized stack order. Again, your premise is that you bought this deck of cards at a yard sale on the way to the show. This time, you get several spectators involved by having them participate in the process of selecting one card. Spectator one names either Red or Black. Assume they say red. Then spectator two chooses hearts or diamonds. Assume they say diamonds. Spectator three says high or low. Assume low. Spectator four says odd or even. Assume even. Spectator five then gets to choose from two, four, or six. He says four. And so, the group has chosen one card that no one would have been able to predict. The deck is then tossed to a final spectator who reads the price tag on the box. The price is thirty-one cents.

The spectator is then asked to remove the deck from the box, and to count the cards off the top onto the table, turning them face up in the process. Spectators get to see that the deck is in random (?) order. When the spectator gets to the forty-first card, it is the group-selected card: the Four of Diamonds.
Again, you use a nail writer. As soon as the card is determined, you know it’s stack number and use the nail writer to write the digit(s) on the price tag. At the end, your deck is still in order, ready to continue with another memorized deck effect.

You should use an old, beat up card case for this routine, of course. You may want to count through the cards yourself, thus not risking disarranging your stack. Just be sure to do it in a very clean, open manner.

I hope you find this simple effect a useful addition to your arsenal. As always, I invite comments, suggestions, ideas, questions, etc. You may reach me at:

deloomis@mindspring.com

And, feel free to visit my web site to see those commercial items that Loomis Magic has available.

And, Loomis Magic has some of the lowest prices on magic DVD’s on the Web. If you’re in the market for DVD’s I invite you to visit the site and see our great prices and selection. We promise to take very good care of our customers... you are the lifeblood of our business.
Message: Posted by: Nick Pudar (Sep 8, 2013 06:39PM)
Many people are unaware of a remarkable service that exists at archive.org
Please check out:
http://web.archive.org/web/20110814122911/http://dennisloomis.com/memdeck/index.html
It contains a copy of the original articles.
Nck
Message: Posted by: Nick Pudar (Sep 8, 2013 06:44PM)
Many people are unaware of a remarkable service that exists at archive.org
Please check out:
http://web.archive.org/web/20110814122911/http://dennisloomis.com/memdeck/index.html
It contains a copy of the original articles.
Nck
Message: Posted by: Dr. JK (Sep 8, 2013 08:14PM)
I was definitely unaware of it. Thanks, Nick! That's invaluable!!
Message: Posted by: Nick Pudar (Sep 9, 2013 06:20PM)
Sorry about the double post. I'm not sure what caused that...
http://archive.org is the site that was created by Brewster Kahle. I met Brewster quite a few years ago, and I was blown away at the innovations he created to store all that data at a very low cost with high reliability. Anyway, at the center of the site is the Wayback Machine. If you type in any website address, it will show you all of the versions of that site over time. Brewster started scraping/crawling the entire public web back in 1996. It is quite remarkable, and it is fascinating to watch company sites evolve over time. If you work for a company, to back in time to see what your company's web presence looked like.

(edit) I just looked up the Café on the Wayback Machine, and this is from 2001:
http://web.archive.org/web/20061224015218/http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/index.php

Nick
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Sep 28, 2013 10:27AM)
Sorry it's been a while since my last update, but if you want to read them before they are posted here, Nick posted the link. :)

Thanks, Nick. That is where I've been getting these articles from, because I am still in the process of compiling them for myself as well. The wayback machine is a great resource.

---

[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 8)

[i]The Dennis Loomis version of "The Subtle Game" and 
how to utilize a memorized deck in walk around. [/b]

The Eighth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

My main topic this month will be setting up the memorized deck stack as part of an actual performance, and how doing this integrates with one or more effects that retain the stack and one or more effects that destroy the stack.

But first, I’d like to recommend a book which I received this month. It’s entitled “Mindsights” and was written by a former President of the Psychic Entertainers Association, Doug Dyment. It contains many wonderful ideas, effects, and routines, but of particular interest to the readers of this column is his “Quickstack.” It’s subtitled “a.k.a. The Half-Hour Memorized Deck.) After my first read through I am convinced that this claim is absolutely justified. So, if you are searching for a memorized deck to use which can be learned very quickly, this may be the answer. You can read more about the book and the stack on Doug’s sight at:

http://www.oratory.com/

Or, you can purchase the book directly from Doug Dyment,1361 Rhode Island Street, San Francisco, CA 94107. The cost is $25.00 postpaid. I ordered mine through Doug’s site, using Pay Pal, and he shipped it out the very next day.

My first exposure to memorized deck magic was the Nikola Card System which appears as the final chapter of Jean Hugard’s “Encyclopedia of Card Tricks.” I played with it a bit in my early teens, but never realized the power contained within the system. Like many, I may have been put off by the fact that some of the built in effects were outmoded because they were based on card games like Whist and Nap which were seldom played anymore. However, I did notice the final entry entitled: “A Subtle Game.” Of particular interest is the fact that you begin this effect with a thoroughly shuffled deck, but at the end, it is in the Nikola System Order. (Or any other memorized stack order.) Clearly this has many applications for those of us that use a memorized deck in our work. Should we find ourselves somewhere that a deck of cards is available, but no opportunity for privacy to set it up, it can be done right in the context of a performance.

I’ll briefly outline the procedure, using for my examples the Aronson stack order, and then suggest some alternative handlings. Cards 49, 50, 51, and 52 must be located and forced. Hugard suggests that the cards be palmed off the top and a spectator allowed to shuffle the deck. The cards are returned to the top when the deck is returned and the cards are forced upon four spectators. He does not suggest any particular method. Then, the cards are returned, but all controlled to the top in order. The entire deck is dealt into four piles (of 13 cards each) so that each of the spectators receives a pile that contains his selected card. They pick up the cards and fan them so that they can see the faces of all of the cards. The parties are asked to sort their hands into the four suits as if they were going to play a game of Bridge or Hearts. The performer now begins to name cards, and each spectator looks for the called card. When it is found, the spectator hands it to the magician who simply places it on the table in front of himself, building up a pile of 48 cards. The order seems to be completely random, but is not. The cards are called in stack order. And, at the conclusion each spectator is left holding just one card which is the card that they selected, an impressive trick in itself.

Hugard leaves much to the individual performer and no suggestions are made as to the patter, the particular force(s), or the controls, etc. So let me take over now and share some thoughts and discoveries.

First, the palming can be eliminated if you are not comfortable with stealing the four cards and adding them back onto the deck. If you have a box for the cards, one thing you might do quickly before starting your impromptu show is to locate the necessary four cards (In Aronson stack terms, that would be the Six of Diamonds, Queen of Clubs, Two of Clubs and the Nine of Diamonds.) and put them on top of the deck. The deck is then replaced in the box and you are ready to start. When you remove the cards for your first effect, you secretly leave those four cards in the box. Do a quick trick which involves having a spectator thoroughly shuffle the deck. Then replace the cards in the box, close it, and do a non-card effect. Remembering (?) another card trick, you again remove the cards from the box and go into the Hugard routine. Simply cut the block of four cards to the center, retaining a break, and use a riffle-stop force. At the point where the spectator supposedly stopped you, remove the four cards and hand them to four spectators. Once they memorize their cards, you return them to the deck. You can simply cut the cards at random, and retain the top half in your hand. Each spectator places his or her card onto the tabled lower half. When you reassemble the deck you hold a break and either use a pass or double undercut to return the block of four cards to the top. When you deal four hands of 13 cards to the spectators, each one’s selected card will be the bottom card of their block of 13. So, have them mix up the packet of cards before they even look at the faces. One effective way is to have each of them simply spread the cards around on the table, mixing them in this thorough, if inelegant, manner. They then pick up their packets, and sort out the suits.

You can suggest that you will call cards at random and see if you can identify the selected cards. As you call the cards and collect them, everyone will be waiting for you to name and identify the chosen cards. Surprisingly, this doesn’t happen. You call out 48 cards and stop. You ask each spectator if you have named his or her card. They will deny it. Then you ask spectator number one to name the card they chose. When they do so, have them show the remaining card in his hand to the audience and it will be his card. This is repeated with the other three spectators. Because all four spectators are looking for each card that you call, and because their hands are separated into suits, there is little delay when you name a card. Almost immediately one of the spectators will hand it to you and you can name the next.

You actually have two ways to proceed. You can names the cards, in order, from 1 to 48. Or, you can names the cards in reverse order, from 48 to 1. If you do the former, you build a face up pile on the table. With most memorized decks this will betray no discernable pattern and it certainly appears that you are just naming cards in a random order. If, however, you prefer to place the cards face down, you simply call the cards from 48 to 1. Either way, when you take the four selected cards in order from the spectators, you then can add the block of four cards to either the top or bottom of the deck. You are then set to fry your audience with one of the powerful routines with our favorite tool.

As Hugard points out, this is also a very good out if your memorized deck should become unexpectedly disarranged. Perhaps you or a spectator accidentally drops the deck to the floor. Or, a spectator suddenly shuffles the deck when you are not expecting it. Having “A Subtle Game” in your repertoire can salvage the situation.

If you wish, you can use your pocket instead of the card box. Simply remove the four necessary cards from the deck at an opportune moment and put them into your pocket. You put the deck away, and the four cards are added. If you do not wish to do an intervening non-card effect, try this: Have a card selected and returned. Control the card to the bottom of the deck, and offer to find it sight unseen. Put the deck into your pocket so that the four cards already there go on top. Then have the spectator name his card. Showing your hand empty, plunge it into your pocket and apparently dig through the deck, etc. Make it look difficult. Finally, just remove the bottom card and bring it out. It will be the selected card. When you remove the deck from your pocket, the four cards are now in place. If you want to get a little fancier, you spell the name of the chosen card. With each letter you remove a card from your pocket. They are coming off the top of the deck and you put each new card under the previous ones, retaining the block of four cards on top. On the last letter of the cards name, take the bottom card of the deck and it will be the card you just spelled. Alternatively you can spell the spectator’s name, or your own. Remove the deck from your pocket, place the block of previously removed cards on top, and you’re ready for “A Subtle Game.”

Finally, I’d like to suggest how this might be utilized in an evening of close up magic when you either table-hop or stroll around at a party or in a hospitality suite.

There are three different kinds of effects you can do: The Subtle Game itself which will set up your deck for you, effects which retain the order of the stack, and effects which destroy your stack. For my examples, I’ll use The Birthday Book from one of my previous Columns as the effect which retains the stack. And, I’ll use Simon Aronson’s powerful three-phase poker deal as an effect which destroys the stack.

Perhaps at the beginning of the evening you begin with your deck set up in Aronson stack order. You can now do either the Poker Deal or the Birthday book for your first group. That will depend on whether you have room to deal out the poker hands on a table, whether you need a shorter or longer routine, and what seems appropriate for the group at hand. If you do the Birthday book, you can continue on and do the Poker deal for the same group if you like. But you don’t have to. Perhaps you will prefer to do the Birthday book as the only card effect for this group. If so, you still have the same options when you reach the next group. However, once you do the Poker Deal, then it is necessary to do the Subtle Game routine as the next card effect. (At least with this deck of cards.) However, in strolling situations you still have some options as to how to go about this. You can finish your magic (or your card magic) for the same group by doing The Subtle Game. If you are concerned that an alert spectator might understand that you were setting up something when you call the cards out, it hardly matters. You will leave this group and go to the next before you do another Memorized deck routine. However, you can also leave the group with the cards mixed. For the next group you can do The Subtle Game as your only card effect if you prefer. So even though someone might suspect that you are setting something up, they will never have the opportunity to test that theory. When you reach the next group, you are now ready to do either the Birthday Book routine, or the Poker Deal, or both.

Remember, that there are other powerful effects you can substitute for the Birthday Book Routine which do not destroy your stack. You can, in fact, do several of these at any time you wish, and conclude with the Poker Deal. There are also many other powerful effects you can do which destroy the stack. Once you get comfortable with The Subtle Game, you need not worry about destroying your stack.

Incidentally, when I’m doing strolling close up magic, I often carry two decks of cards. I use the normal deck for the many routines that can be done with it. I’ll then replace it in its box and return it to the same pocket which contains my Aronson Stack deck. I can then do a coin trick and then, if I wish, remember (?) another card trick and take out the stacked deck. Occasionally I may do The Subtle Game with my “normal” deck and be in the strong position of having two decks in Aronson stack order. Then, if I like, I can do the Poker deal at a table, put the cards away, do a non-card effect, and then take out the other stacked deck and do the Birthday book routine. I’m now back to having one deck stacked and one not.

I would love to hear from other memorized deck workers. If you have any routines, ideas, or handlings on memorized deck work, I’d be happy to publish them here.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Sep 28, 2013 10:45AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 9)

[i]The Berglas Effect (Any Card at Any Number) with 26 Decks [/b]

The Ninth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis[/i]

My friend Bill Nagler, M.D., an excellent magician, has had a long-standing interest in what has become known as "The Berglas Effect.” It’s the classic “Any card at any number” effect popularized by David Berglas, the great British magician and mentalist. In it’s pure form, a spectator names any card, and then any number from 1 to 52. The magician counts down in the deck to the designated number and the named card is there!

In some recountings of Berglas’ performances, the spectator is allowed to specify whether the counting is to be done from the top or the face of the deck, the spectator themselves do the counting, and the deck is in full view from the beginning. This “pure” effect is probably not possible. With the release of the Berglas book, it seems that Berglas took advantage of many different methods and circumstances to create different versions of the effect, occasionally getting very close to the “pure” effect itself.

Bill suggested to me that what he wanted was a version that allowed him, in his office or home, to have multiple decks positioned in various locations. Once the card and number were called, he would calculate mentally which deck was needed and then produce that deck. He wanted me to come up with a method to stack the decks and to determine which one was needed.

Here then, is my solution. To make it practical, the conditions are as follows:

1. The spectator names the card and the number BEFORE the deck is brought forth.

2. The performer decides whether to count from the top or the face.

3. The performer does the counting. (There is no sleight of hand, but this insures that the spectator will not make a mistake, or accidentally drop the cards.)

Using these conditions, we can achieve the effect with 26 decks. If the counting was always done from the top, or if the spectator can specify whether the counting is to be done from the top or face, then 52 decks would be needed. This seems far too many to be workable. Hiding 26 decks around your home or office will be a big enough challenge.

All decks are in Aronson stack order except that each deck other than the first has been given one straight cut. To keep things straight in your head, the deck number tells you the position of the Jack of Spades. (1 in Aronson Stack.) The decks are NOT 1,2,3, etc. Instead, they are 1,3,5,7,9, ... 51. That's because you don't need a deck where the Jack of Spades is second from the top. (Or any even number) The number "two" is covered by deck 51, but you count from the face. The Jack of Spades is second from the face, which is the same thing as being 51st from the top. One more example: Deck 19 has the Jack of spades at position 19. That was accomplished by cutting the deck between the Jack of Hearts and the Ten of Clubs and moving 18 cards from the bottom to the top. The result is a deck with the Ten of Clubs on Top and the Jack of Hearts on the bottom.

With the 26 decks hidden in locations that allow you to find the one you need, you’re ready to perform. The spectator names a card at random and then any number from 1 to 52. The first thing you do is to recall the stack number of the card named. There are two rules that you apply to determine the deck to bring into play. There is one additional rule that tells you whether to count from the top of the face of the deck.

RULE ONE. HOW TO DETERMINE WHETHER YOU COUNT FROM THE TOP OR BOTTOM ONCE THE PROPER DECK IS IN YOUR HANDS. Compare the stack number of the card to the number the spectator designates. If they are both odd or if they are both even, deal from the top. If one is odd, and the other is even, deal from the bottom.

This is very simple, as a few trials will show you. So once you finish the mental math that gets you to the correct deck, you can forget all the arithmetic and use this rule to remind you which end of the deck to count from.
Rules Two and Three tell you how to get to the proper deck. Interestingly, it also depends on whether the designated number and the stack number match or do not match as far as odd and even is concerned. You are actually going to apply either rule Two or Three first, and then use rule One. I gave you Rule One first because it’s easier to understand and helps you to grasp rules Two and Three.

RULE TWO. If the designated number and the stack number of the named card are both odd, or both even... Subtract 1 less than the stack number from the designated number. Should you get a negative number, add 52 to it. The result is the deck number.

RULE THREE. If the designated number and the stack number of the named card are one even and one odd, first subtract the designated number from 53. (This will always yield a positive number, of course.) Then subtract one less than the stack number from your result, adding 52 if your result is a negative number. This gives you the deck number.

Don’t let the concept of negative numbers throw you, or the seeming complexity of the calculations. After you work through a few examples, it becomes quite easy to do and to understand. If you have not worked with negative numbers before, here’s a brief review. If you subtract a number from a smaller one, you really just subtract the smaller from the larger and put a negative sign in front of your answer. For example, if you were to subtract seven from five, the result is –2. (This is said “minus two.”) For our purposes, and following Rules Two and Three above, whenever we get a negative number it is added to 52. For example, if you have a –2, when you add it to 52, you get 50. That’s because when you “add” a negative number, you subtract the positive value of the negative number from the higher number.

It’s easiest to understand this if you do a few examples. In fact, it’s not really necessary to understand why the rules work. Although you will probably be more comfortable with the whole procedure once you do understand.

EXAMPLE ONE. To ease into this: let’s assume that the card named is the Jack of Spades. Since its stack number is 1, the math is easy. Let’s say that the spectator wants it to be at position 25. First, since the designated number (25) and the Stack Number (1) are both odd, we know that we will be counting from the top. And, for the same reason, we will apply Rule Two to determine which deck we will use. That tells us to subtract one less than the stack number from the designated number and the result will be the deck we use. Since the stack number is one, one less than that is zero. We subtract zero from 25 and get 25. (This is obvious, of course, we defined Deck 25 as the deck that had the Jack of Spades in the 25th position.)

EXAMPLE TWO. Still assuming that the card named is the Jack of Spades, but this time the number called is 44. Because the Stack number (1) is odd, and the designated number (44) is even, we will be counting from the face of the deck. For the same reason, we will use Rule Three.

Following that, we are to first subtract the designated number (44) from 53. That gives a result of 9. Then, subtracting one less that the stack number (1-1=0), our final answer is nine. We get deck nine and count from the face. To test this, take a deck in Aronson Stack order and cut it between the Six of Spades and Four of Clubs. This produces “Deck 9, ” because the Jack of Spades is ninth from the top. But if you count from the face, you’ll find it at position 44.

EXAMPLE THREE. This time we’ll assume that the card named is the Eight of Diamonds. And the number designated is 31. Since the stack number of the Eight of Diamonds is 9 (odd) and the designated number is also odd, we will be counting from the top, and applying rule two to determine the proper deck. So, we subtract one less than the stack number (9-1=8) from the designated number. (31-8=23.) So, we produce deck 23 and count from the top. To check this, take your deck and cut between the King of Hearts and the Four of Diamonds. This puts the Jack of Spades at position 23, which is what makes it deck 23. Now, count down to position 31 and you’ll find the Eight of Diamonds.

EXAMPLE FOUR. This time, we’ll assume that the Jack of Diamonds is named, and the number designated is 25. Since the stack number (36) is even and the designated number (11) is odd, we’ll be counting from the face and we’ll be using Rule Three. So, we subtract the designated number from 53. (53-25=28) Next we are to subtract one less that the stack number (36-1=35) from the result. (28-35=-7). Since we have a negative number, we add it to 52 and get 45. In deck 45, the Jack of Diamonds is the 25th card from the face. You can check this using the same procedure outlined in the prior examples.

This may seem daunting at first, but I assure you that all that’s required is some simple arithmetic and after you’ve worked through several more examples you’ll find it much easier to do than to explain.

That having been said, I’d like to share a few more thoughts. The effect would obviously be far more effective if you could produce the deck in advance. While that’s not possible, perhaps we can create that illusion. Clearly, if we can have a deck in view, and then switch it for the proper deck undetected, we have a real miracle. One interesting solution is a rather complex mechanical device. In your home, you might have a coffee table with a wooden box sitting on it. Inside the coffee table there is a kind of jukebox affair which can locate the proper deck for you, and raise it up into the box mechanically. Perhaps you trigger it with a remote control on your person. When the box is opened, which happens after the card and number are designated, only one deck is seen and it was apparently in there from the start.

While this could be built, is there another way? Let’s say that you’re seated at a table. A deck of cards, which you’ve been using for other effects sits in it’s box on the table in front of you. If you can get the proper deck into your hand, you can pick up the deck that has been in full view, and switch it for the proper deck. This will not be easy since there will be attention on the deck, and how do you get the proper deck? One simple solution is to use a stooge. That person sits across from you at the table. He has, at his feet, a briefcase that holds the 26 decks and also a lazy tongs reaching device. Under the pretext of putting something away in his case, he grabs the proper deck, and uses the reaching device to deliver the deck into your hands or lap under the table.

Using the same basic technique, you can eliminate the deck switch. Your stooge gets you the deck that you palm in your hand. Standing up, you apparently pull the deck from a pocket. Now you can count to the named card. And, you really have no more decks on your person should anyone check.

If you do use the stooge version, the stooge might be able to consult a chart instead of doing the arithmetic. This would simplify the headwork, but the two of you would have to practice the delivery of the deck. Or, you could do the math yourself and signal the deck number to your stooge. Finally, it’s possible that your stooge can be in some hidden location. He locates the proper deck, and gets it to you in some sneaky fashion.

That’s our work to date. We are still playing with notions that will reduce the number of decks needed. Possibly to a point that you can carry them on your person. Rest assured, I will keep you informed in this forum.

Changing the subject entirely, I’ll like to point out that my good friend Ormond McGill is approaching his 90th birthday. (June 15th, 2003) Although he’s had some medical challenges in the past two or three years, he is still going strong. He came out, in the company of his friend Lee Grabel to see a show I did with Chuck Mignosa, Loyd Auerbach, and Robert Kane in Concord California on April 12. Ormond is known as the Dean of American Stage Hypnotists and is the author of “The Encyclopedia of Stage Hypnotism” as well as 32 other books. His autobiography is at the publishers awaiting a release in late 2003. He is truly a living legend and is known worldwide for his writings and his performances featuring Hypnotism, Mentalism and Magic.

Ormond will be performing and lecturing at the Masters Ultimate Stage Hypnosis Seminar coming up in Las Vegas. It will be held at the Boardwalk Hotel and Casino June 19th – 22, 2003. There will be an optional magic course on Monday, June 23rd as well. Other presenters at the Seminar include Jerry Valley, Tommy Vee, Chuck Mignosa, Serena Lumiere, and Christina Kaya.

And, feel free to visit my web site to see those commercial items that Loomis Magic has available.
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Sep 28, 2013 11:17AM)
[b]MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 10)

[i]Preconceived Jazzin with the Aronson Stack
Bill Nagler, Scott Cram, David Harkey, Eric Anderson, 
Mike Close, Patrick Page and Dennis Loomis
[/b]
The Tenth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis
[/i]
This month’s column will combine thoughts and ideas from Scott Cram, Bill Nagler, Darwin Ortiz, David Harkey, Eric Anderson, Mike Close, Patrick Page and your scribe. The effect will have several versions and I’ll discuss how to decide which one to do toward the end.

This began when I received an e-mail from Bill Nagler. He had worked out a way to spell to most any card in a deck stacked in Aronson Stack order. (The exceptions are the two or three cards on top and bottom. They are revealed in other ways.) What follows is Bill’s list. A “+1” means that you spell down and turn up the NEXT card. When spelling a suit, you will usually use the plural form. (Diamonds not diamond.) The final letter will be an “s” and that’s what Bill means by “turn over s card.” In the case of the Queen of Spades and Four of Clubs you will use the suit name minus the “s.” (Spade and Club)

1-JS-turn over top card
2-KC-double lift
3-5C-triple lift
4-2H-spell two +1
5-9S-spell nine, +1
6-AS-spell spades, turn over s card
7-3H-spell hearts, +1
8-6C-spell six clubs, turn over s
9-8D-spell diamonds, +1
10-AC-spell ace of clubs, turn over s card
11-10S-spell ten of spades, turn over s card
12-5H-spell five of hearts, turn over s card
13-2D-spell two of diamonds, turn over s card
14-KD-spell king of diamonds, turn over s card
15-7D-spell seven of diamonds, turn over s card
16-8C-spell the eight of clubs, +1
17-3S- spell the three of spades, +1
18-AD-spell the ace of diamonds, count 1 card for ace, +1
19-7S-spell seven spades, count 7 cards, +1
20-5S-spell the five of spades, count 5 cards, turn over last card
21-QD-spell queen of diamonds, spell a 6 letter name, turn over last card
22-AH-spell ace of hearts twice, turn over s card
23-8S-spell eight spades twice, +1
24-3D-spell the three diamond twice, turn over last card
25-7H-spell the seven of hearts, spell a 9-10 letter name, show card
26-QH-spell the queen of hearts, spell a 9-10 letter name, show card
27-5D-from face, spell the five of diamonds, spell a letter name, show card
28-7C-from face, spell the seven of clubs, spell a letter name, show card
29-4H-from face, spell the four of hearts, spell an 8 letter name, show card
30-KH-from face, spell the king of hearts, spell a 7 letter name, +1
31-4D-from face, spell the four of diamonds, spell a 4 letter name, +1
32-10D-from face, spell the ten of diamonds, spell a 4 letter name, +1
33-JC-from face, spell the jack of clubs, spell a 5 letter name +1
34-JH-from face, spell jack hearts twice, show t card ?????
35-10C-from face, spell ten clubs, count 10 cards, show last card
36-JD-from face, spell the jack of diamonds, show s card
37-4S-from face, spell the four of spades, +1
38-10H-from face, spell the ten of hearts, +1
39-6H-from face, spell the six of hearts, show s card
40-3C-from face, spell three of clubs, +1
41-2S-from face, spell two of spades, +1
42-9H-from face, spell nine hearts, +1
43-KS-from face, spell king spades, show s card
44-6S-from face spell six spades, show s card
45-4C-from face, spell four club, show b card
46-8H-from face, spell hearts, +1
47-9C-from face, spell clubs, +1
48-QS-from face, spell spade, show e card
49-6D-from face, spell a 4 letter name
50-QC-from face of deck
51-2C-from face count 2 cards
52-9D-turn over bottom card

While this was an interesting exercise, Bill himself points out that some of these situations are not particularly strong because there is no good reason to combine spelling and counting, or to spell something twice. Still, just having any card named and then spelling to it is a pretty strong effect. I filed it away and made a note to come back to it one day and see how it might be strengthened.

Flash forward in time a few months. I received another e-mail... this one from Scott Cram. He shared another interesting idea. His thought was to combine the premise of Darwin Ortiz’ “Remote Control” from [b]Card Scams and Fantasies[/b] with a spelling procedure that was devised by David Harkey and Eric Andersen for the effect “Outsmart” in their book [b]“Ah-Ha.”[/b]

The Nagler concept was to just have a card named at random. This is, clearly, a very free selection. But, it’s clear to everyone that the magician knows the card. That weakens the effect, perhaps. In Remote Control, Darwin’s idea is to introduce a second deck into the proceedings. The spectator shuffles one, while the magician shuffles the other. One deck is boxed and placed into the spectator’s pocket. (This is the newly introduced deck, which the magician has false shuffled. It’s set up in a memorized deck order.) Then, the spectator is allowed to peek at a card in the deck he shuffled. It seems fair, but the magician gets a glimpse so that he knows the card. He then divulges the location of the card in the boxed deck that is in the spectator’s pocket. (Except in the case of the 51st or 52nd card. In those cases, he magically produces the card.) Scott’s idea was to spell the word(s) suggested by Harkey and Andersen to reveal the location of the duplicate of the peeked at card in the boxed deck. Here is the Harkey/Andersen list:

1 - Top Card
2 - Double Lift
3 - "IOU"
4 - "Fate"
5 - "Magic"
6 - "Magic"+1
7 - "Magical"
8 - "Illusion"
9 - "Illusion"+1
10- "Impossible"
11- "Impossible"+1
12- "Favorite Card"
13- "Impossibility"
14- "Impossibility"+1
15- "Our Favorite Card"
16- "Our Favorite Card"+1
17- "Your Favorite Card"+1
18- "My Very Favorite Card"
19- "Our Very Favorite Card"
20- "Our Very Favorite Card"+1
21- "My Favorite Playing Card"
22- "My Favorite Playing Card"+1
23- "Your Favorite Playing Card"
24- "Your Favorite Playing Card"+1
25- "My Very Favorite Playing Card"
26- "My Very Favorite Playing Card"+1

The bottom 26 are spelled with the deck held face-up (As you spell, turn the cards face-down, so that the deck will remain in your memorized stack order):

27- "My Very Favorite Playing Card"+1
28- "My Very Favorite Playing Card"
29- "Your Favorite Playing Card"+1
30- "Your Favorite Playing Card"
31- "My Favorite Playing Card"+1
32- "My Favorite Playing Card"
33- "Our Very Favorite Card"+1
34- "Our Very Favorite Card"
35- "My Very Favorite Card"
36- "Your Favorite Card"+1
37- "Our Favorite Card"+1
38- "Our Favorite Card"
39- "Impossibility"+1
40- "Impossibility"
41- "Favorite Card"
42- "Impossible"+1
43- "Impossible"
44- "Illusion"+1
45- "Illusion"
46- "Magical"
47- "Magic"+1
48- "Magic"
49- "Fate"
50- "IOU"
51- Glide
52- Bottom Card

Here, in Scott’s words are some tips on learning this list:

[i]These phrases are memorized, along with the mental images used in the memorization of your stack. The trick here, since so many of the phrases are similar, is to create images for them that are vastly different, so as not to create confusion.

To distinguish between "Magic" and "Magical", for example, I picture my favorite magician performing a feat with my mental images to represent "Magic". For "Magical", I imagine a "magi-GAL" (an actual club, BTW!) modeling on or around the card/position images.

When it comes to all the "favorite card" variations, I use substitute words related to the initials of each phrase - "MFPC" for "My Favorite Playing Card", "YFC" for "Your Favorite Card" and so on - and then come up with images for them - "MaFia PiCK" (someone the Mafia has "picked" for good or bad), and then associate that with my card images. Anytime I see "MaFia Pick" in my mind, I know to spell "My Favorite Playing Card". "Your Favorite PaCK" becomes "Your Favorite Playing Card", and so on.

Once you have the words memorized, you need to find natural ways of using them when you need them. For "IOU", David Harkey suggests, "If I can't find your card, I owe you a deck of cards. As a matter of fact, spell I-O-U."

For the 1st, 2nd, 51st and 52nd cards, the original "Outsmart" routine suggests that you talk about their card being a lily pad (for the 1st or 2nd cards), or a rock (for the 51st and 52nd cards), in a pond. You tell them to imagine they are pushing down their lily pad, and watching it rise back up (or, conversely, they are watching their rock sink to the bottom of the pond). You then reveal the card appropriately.[/i]

Note that this list is not specific to any particular Memorized Deck, while the Nagler list above assumes an Aronson Stack. Since that’s what I work with, the rest of the article will assume that particular stack. However, if you work with a different memorized deck, you can still use much of what follows.

My first thought was that I could strengthen the Nagler list by substituting some of the Harkey/Andersen spellings. I also liked some of the “outs” that Mike Close uses in his routine “Jazzin” in Workers Five. And so I set out to create a routine that would combine the “best” of all of these into one.

First, for my work, I dismissed Darwin’s idea of having a card peeked at; with it’s subsequent glimpse. My feeling is that the important thing is that ANY card is FREELY selected. And having a spectator just name a card out loud is as free as it gets. Besides, since a spectator names a card, you are in a position to “assume” later that it’s his favorite if you will be using that word in your spelling to it. But, the idea of having the boxed deck in the spectator’s pocket is also good. So, I first ribbon spread the memorized deck which is already in play face up. I comment that it’s pretty well mixed up. Then, I give it a quick false shuffle, box it and have the spectator put it in a pocket for safe keeping. I now do one of two things to have the card “chosen.” First, a spectator is chosen in some random manner. (Tossing a ping pong ball works fine.) They then just name any card they wish. But, a “fun” way to do this is to introduce a second deck of cards, and have the spectator shuffle it thoroughly. Now, you get them to toss the deck high into the air and the cards just shower down onto the floor! It will take some coaxing on your part to get the spectator to do this. But it’s festive and memorable. Then, another spectator just bends down and grabs any card they like. (They show it to the entire group, of course, and that includes you.) Again, it’s clear that the choice is a free one. Now, you will retrieve the second deck from the spectator’s pocket and locate the duplicate of the chosen card in that deck. In most cases, you will be spelling to it in one way or another. So let’s look at my list, and some of the alternatives.

First, I really like to involve the spectators as much as possible. So, if one of the helpers is named Bob, and if you luck out and the card is 3rd or 50th (3rd from the face,) you can spell his name. I use one person to toss the cards and another to pick up a card at random because you double your chances of being able to spell their name. (If you used Bob and Mary, you can get to the 3rd card, the 4th card, the 49th card, and the 50th card.)

Of course, I can get several outs using my name as well. While my first name is Dennis, my friends often call me “Den” or “Denny”. That gives me cards at the third, fifth, sixth, forty seventh, forty eighth, and fiftieth positions. In the list below, understand that when I suggest that you can spell “Den” or “Denny” or “Dennis,” I’m suggesting that you can use a 3, 5, or 6-letter name. It can be your own, of course, or a spectators. You may want to use your full name. If I spell DENNIS LOOMIS from the Top, it takes me to the Five of Hearts. From the Face, I get to the Two of Spades. If I spell DENNIS RICHARD LOOMIS from the top, I get to the Seven of Spades, and from the face, I get to the Jack of Hearts. You may want to learn where spelling your full name, with and without the middle name will take you.

Of course, you can double the possibilities when you spell something by turning either the card on the last letter, or the next one. This is probably better when the deck is face down. However, there’s a nice alternative, when you are spelling from the face and would like to use the “next card” ploy. As you take the letters one at a time, table them, pocket them, or transfer them to the bottom. On the last letter, you act surprised that you are wrong. Offer to magically make it right and do the Erdnase Color Change to change the wrong card into the chosen one. This will leave two cards out of order in your stacked deck. One way to fix this is to say: “Of course this is just an illusion. The card really is ...” Then you do the Erdnase Color Change again and change the card back to what it was.

When working with the face down deck, an alternative to the “next card” ploy is attributed to Patrick Page by Mike Close. You turn up the card on the final letter. But, it’s incorrect. You act surprised. Then you do a top change. You then blow on the card, or some other “moment of magic,” and show the card your are holding has become the correct one. You’ll find this described in the “Jazzin” section of Mike’s book: [b]“Workers 5.”[/b]

What follows is my annotated list of my “favorites” from the sources mentioned above. If you elect to learn this, you may want to look at the Nagler and Harkey/Andersen lists above to see if you prefer something else. In many instances, I will list alternative procedures.

1. Okay, they happen to name the top card of the deck, the Jack of Spades. If you cannot make this into a miracle, you may want to give up magic. I suggest not touching the cards yourself. Let a spectator just open the box and show the top card. But first, build it up with your patter!

2. You can apparently do the same thing, except that you have to handle the deck so that you can do a double lift turnover. Alternatively, do a big build up, take the top card into your right hand, and when you show it you are WRONG. Then do the Top change ala Patrick Page to “rescue” the situation.

3. Spell IOU. (See Harkey patter above.) or DEN.

4. Spell FATE. Or spell “TWO” (fourth card in Aronson Stack is the Two of hearts. Either turn next card or use the Pat Page Top Change out.

5. Spell MAGIC, DENNY or NINE +1 (The Fifth Card in the Aronson Stack is the Nine of Spades,) and turn next card or do Page Ploy.

6. Spell MAGIC +1. Or DENNIS.

7. Spell MAGICAL. or DENNIS +1 or HEARTS. (7th Card in Aronson Stack is the Three of Hearts.

8. Spell SIX CLUBS

9 Spell ILLUSION +1, or count 8 +1, (Card is Eight of Diamonds)

10 – 15. These cards are set to spell in the Aronson stack, so spell their name, omitting “the,” including “of,” and using the “s” on the end of the suit.

16. Spell THE EIGHT OF CLUBS +1.

17. Spell THE THREE OF SPADES +1.

18 to 36. For these, use the Harkey/Andersen word(s) above. Remember that once you pass 26, you will spell from the face of the deck, not the top. For the five instances (27, 29, 31, 33, and 36) in which you use the +1or next card ploy, I like using the Erdnase Color change to transform the “wrong” card into the right one.

Again, for the rest of the cards, you will be spelling or counting from the FACE of the deck.

37. Spell THE FOUR OF SPADES, +1

38. Spell THE TEN OF HEARTS +1

39. Spell THE SIX OF HEARTS

40. Spell THREE OF CLUBS +1 or IMPOSSIBILITY

41. Spell TWO OF SPADES +1 or FAVORITE CARD

42. Spell NINE HEARTS +1

43. Spell KING SPADES or IMPOSSIBLE

44. Spell SIX SPADES or ILLUSION +1

45. Spell FOUR CLUB or ILLUSION

46. Spell HEARTS + 1 or MAGICAL

47. Spell CLUBS +1 or MAGIC +1 or DENNIS

48. Spell SPADE or QUEEN or Denny

49. Spell FATE or four letter name.

50. Spell IOU or DEN

51. You can use a glide to show that the card was on the bottom of the deck. Or, build up that the card is on the bottom, and when the deck is removed, you’re wrong. Then use the Erdnase Color Change to transform the Nine of Diamonds into the Two of Clubs.

52. See notes on 1. This is another miracle if you sell it properly.

In his description of Remote Control, Darwin mentions that he often gives away one of the decks, and continues to work with the stacked deck. It makes a good way to bring in a stacked deck. If you use my idea of having the deck tossed into the air, when you’re done, say: “If anyone will volunteer to pick up all of the cards, you may keep them as a souvenir.” If someone does, then give him or her the empty box.

All of these “outs” are not too hard to learn if you are used to thinking on your feet a bit The first nine are quite easy, and with numbers this small, you can “rethink” the procedure should you forget what to do. Simon Aronson has already taken care of 10 to 15 for you. For 16 and 17 are also the card names, but you add the word “THE” to your spelling and use the +1 ploys. . Cards 18 to 36 are the Harkey/Andersen word(s). The mnemonic samples from Scott Cram on learning the various “favorite” words or phrases will help. After the Harkey/Andersen phrases from 18 to 36, you go back to spelling the card names. As you are now working from the face, the patterns you use are getting shorter. Remember cards 37 to 45 this way: First, you have three cards ( 37, 38 & 39) where you go back to spelling the FULL card names. (That means you use “the” and “of” in addition to the value and suit.) For the next two cards (40 & 41) you spell the name, but leave out “the.” For the next three cards (42, 43, & 44) you spell only the suit and value. And finally, for the 44nd card you drop “the,” “of,” and the final “s.”

By the way, when spelling from the face, it’s not always important to know if you are going to end on the final letter or the next letter. If you get to the final letter and it’s not the card, you know that you are in a +1 situation. You can decide if you just want to continue directly to the next card, or to use the Erdnase Change ploy. Thanks why I didn’t bother you with whether or not you are in a +1 situation for the cards 37 to 45 above. It’s easier to remember the pattern, and then just spell. You’ll see as you get to the end whether the card on the final letter is the proper card or not. If not, use one of the +1 procedures.

Above 45, the numbers are so small that it’s not hard to figure out what you are going to do should you forget. But here’s a tip: Remember that to determine how far a card is from the face of the deck, you subtract it’s stack number from 53, not 52! For example the 46th card (the eight of hearts) is seven cards from the face, not six. Just keep that in mind and you’ll see that the numbers from 46 to 52 will give you no trouble.

Finally, you can decide for yourself whether you prefer to make this a single effect, and quit after the first selected card is found in the second deck. The alternative is to use this to begin a “Jazzin” session. You now continue by having another spectator pick up a card at random from the floor or just naming a new card. How long you want to go on is up to you. But, you really need to have a strong finish. For that, I can do no better than to refer you to Mike Close’s original Jazzin in [b]“Workers 5.”[/b] Parts of his routine will vary, but he always knows how he’s going to end. His ending is a killer effect from David Williamson, but you’ll have to read [b]“Workers 5”[/b] for that story. If you don’t have it, order it right now from Loomis Magic. At the same time, you better pick up Darwin Ortiz’s “Scams and Fantasies with Cards” and David Harkey and Eric Andersen’s book [b]“Ah-Ha.”[/b]

If you already do "Jazzin," I hope that you’ve learned a few more outs.
Message: Posted by: YLyoo (Nov 22, 2013 10:25PM)
Amazing! I learned a lot from the original site.
It's a great thing you have done.
Message: Posted by: pnielan (Sep 17, 2014 10:27PM)
I miss Dennis's posts. His knowledge, enthusiasm, and general good nature added much to this forum.
Message: Posted by: helder (Dec 11, 2014 05:24PM)
Great tips, articles. Does anyone can post the others?


Thanks for sharing
Message: Posted by: Robert P. (Dec 11, 2014 09:19PM)
Nick posted the link to all of them earlier in the thread but I will try to post some more soon. My life has just been pretty busy lately and I kinda forgot about it.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 02:17PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 11)

Strange Interlude
Giobbi-Hofsinzer Strange Harmony with the Aronson Stack

The Eleventh in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis

Here's an addition to the "outs" in last month's article on Jazzin with the Aronson Stack. Outs for three specific cards, actually. Built into the Aronson stack are three natural "sandwiches." I'm referring to the set of three cards at positions 29, 30, and 31, as well as the set of three at 34, 35, and 36, and also the set of three at 48, 49 and 50. The first set is the King of Hearts sandwiched between the two red fours. The second set is the Ten of Clubs that’s sandwiched between the two red jacks. The final set is the Six of Diamonds sandwiched between the two black queens. If any of the three center cards in those sandwiches is named, you can, as an alternative to the spelling procedures, take advantage of the natural sandwiches. For example, let's say spectator names the King of Hearts. (Or that's the card picked up from the floor in my version.) You say "Oh yes... the King of Hearts. I always have great difficulty with the King of Hearts. But, the two red fours can always locate the King of Hearts. If I simply press down on the top of the deck, the four of hearts will travel through the deck and position itself right above the King of Hearts. And, if I press again, the four of diamonds will travel through the deck and position itself directly below the King of Hearts. They form a kind of "sandwich" with your card between them. I know that's hard to believe, but take a look." At that point, you simply turn the deck over and quickly spread down through the face up cards to the King of Hearts. You know it's at position thirty from the top, so locating it takes just a moment. You then remove it along with the two red fours on either side of it. That's about as easy as it gets. It's an interesting alternative to the spelling in the rest of the Jazzin' routine.

The new Robert Giobbi book, Card College 5, has recently been released. I recommend it highly to all students of card magic. It's full of strong routines. (Brief commercial: you can get it, at a great price from Loomis Magic at www.loomismagic.com ) On page 1146, Giobbi presents an effect he calls "Strange Harmony." It's his solution to one of the Hofzinser card problems; one that has never before been properly translated into English. The effect is very straightforward: Someone cuts off a number of cards from a deck. A spectator chooses two cards from the resulting packet. Their values are added and the total equals the number of cards that's been cut off. About this effect, Giobbi says: "You will agree that this is a different effect, and although not an earth-shaking miracle, an interesting problem that can be made into a charming mystery if properly staged."

Exactly. A cute interlude between stronger effects. But, this "interlude" requires a special 26-card stack. I knew that I wouldn't be carrying a stacked deck just to do this. Perhaps there was a way to do the same effect with the Aronson Stack. I've found two solutions so far and there may be others.

To begin, cut the Seven of Spades to the bottom of the deck. (It’s nineteen down, of course.) One way to do this is my Haymow Shuffle technique described in a previous article. Now, you must get a break between the King of Hearts and the Four of Diamonds. One way to do this is to openly turn the cards face up and spread through to the King of Hearts, showing that the cards are well mixed. Simply sight the King of Hearts and get your break. You can injog the King of Hearts and then turn the packet over and catch your break at the injogged card. Or, you can get your break face up and do the Marlo "book" turnover catching the same break with the cards face down. Now, do a riffle stop force at the break. The top packet is placed in the card box; it contains eleven cards. The packet left has the Four of Diamonds on top, and the Seven of Spades on the bottom. In the Giobbi routine these two cards are forced in the following manner: Begin to deal cards from the top of the deck in a face down pile. Have a spectator call out stop at any time and you stop dealing when he does. The packet is left on the table and you offer to do the same thing again with another spectator. But, you suggest that perhaps it would be interesting to see the cards. So, you turn the remaining packet in your hand over and begin to deal cards down onto the table again. But, you turn the cards face down as you deal. The second spectator stops you at any point. You now turn the two packets face up and the Four and Seven are the cards on the face. Adding the four and seven, you get eleven. You show that the first spectator predicted this, because the cards in the box total exactly eleven.

Here's the other "solution" contained within the Aronson stack. Initially, you cut the nine of spades to the bottom of the deck. Since it's only five cards down, an easy way to do this is to just thumb count five cards and hold a break. Then double undercut to the break. Next, you need to catch a break between the Ace of Hearts and the Eight of Spades. (The Ace will be seventeen cards from the top.) Again, the easy way is to turn the deck face up and spread the cards, sighting the Ace of Hearts.) Now, when you do the riffle stop force, the top packet will have seventeen cards, and the cards at the top and the face of the resulting packet will be an eight and a nine.
Instead of the riffle stop force, you can also use Gary Ouellet’s Cabaret Force from his video series "The Best of Gary Ouellet." It€™s recently been made available as a 3-volume set of DVDs. (Also available at a good price from Loomis Magic.) If you use the cabaret force, you probably should do the version with the nine of spades on the bottom. The cabaret force to the 17th position works better.

As an alternative to getting your break by running through the face up cards, you can simply spread the deck between your hands and sight count. It's fast and easy, and appears to be innocent. As an alternative force of the top and bottom cards of the second packet, you can use the Bill Simon Prophecy move. This excellent force of two cards can be found in the book: Scarne on Cards. It's used in the effect "Double Prediction." It's also in the book Effective Card Magic by Bill Simon. It's used in the effect "Business Card Prophecy."

For this version, you write, on the back of one of your business cards "Count the Cards in the Box." After the packet of cards has been placed into the box, bring out the business card. Make sure the writing is on the underside. Have the second spectator plunge it into the remaining packet at any spot. Doing the prophecy move will put the credit card between the four and the seven. If you use this method, it's far easier to reset your Aronson Stack. After the four and seven have been shown, return them to the top and bottom of their respective packets and reassemble the packets with the four going on top and the seven on the bottom. After the eleven cards in the box have been counted (without reversing their order, of course) place the packet on either the top or bottom of the other packet, cut the Nine of Diamonds to the face of the deck, and your Aronson Stack is ready for your next miracle.

Hofzinser called his problem "The Strange Coincidence." Giobbi dubbed his version "Strange Harmony." So, let's call this one "Strange Interlude."

Next month, I'll share a procedure for resetting the Aronson stack from Andrew Wimhurst. It was pointed out to me by one of the faithful readers of Smoke and Mirrors and I'll also share some of his thinking on Simon Aronson’s great effect "Some People Think."
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 02:27PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 12)

Harry Lorayne's It's Not Easy To Lie
With the Aronson Stack

The Twelfth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis

This time we'll look at how utilizing the Aronson Stack in conjunction with a great Harry Lorayne effect can strengthen it. And, it gives us one more effect we can do with the Aronson Stack while keeping the stack in order.

In Harry's 2001 book, Personal Collection, on page 9 is a wonderful trick called "It's Not Easy To Lie." In our version, one spectator will choose a card, apparently at random, which will ultimately predict the location of a card picked by another spectator. Along the way some fun will be had with the premise of getting a spectator to lie. And, in this version, the magician is able to name the chosen card just before it's revealed.

In Lorayne's trick you start out by secretly getting a six spot into seventh position. While this is not difficult, our version eliminates having to look through the cards at all. Begin by simply double undercutting the top card (Jack of Spades) to the bottom. This places the six of clubs in the seventh position ready to go. You start out by explaining that you need just a few cards for this trick. As you do so, you spread over five cards and drop them as a group onto the table. You then say that a few more would be better. This time you spread over four cards and drop them as a group onto the packet of cards already on the table. At this time, the six of clubs will be the second card from the top. The remainder of the deck is placed aside and won’t be used in the effect.

Spectator A will now choose a card in an apparently random manner. But, he will end up with the six of clubs. To do this, you hand the packet to the spectator, and tell him that you're going to teach him the Australian Shuffle or "Deal and Duck." Ask him to deal one card from the top of the deck onto the table. Then he is to take the new top card and place it on the bottom. Again a card is dealt onto the table. This is kept up until the spectator has only one card. Ask them to either put it in their pocket, or cover it with their hand. It will come into play later.

Now the packet of cards on the table is handed to Spectator B. They are asked to shuffle the cards as much as they want and then to fan the cards like a poker hand. They are to look over the cards and just mentally choose one of them. Get them to really burn it into their memory. Then they shuffle the cards again and finally hand the packet of eight cards to you.

You now explain that you will ask the spectator three questions that can be answered by "Yes" or "No." Each time they are to LIE. You point out that it's hard to lie, but you really want them to do it. You will now do an in-hand reverse faro. Relax, it's a piece of cake. With the cards in your left one you spread them to the right one at a time, keeping the order intact, but out jogging the second, fourth, sixth, and eighth cards. Fan out the cards and tip the fan up so that the spectator can see the four outjogged cards only. Remind them that they are to lie and ask them if their card is one of that group. If they say yes, you strip out the four outjogged cards, maintaining their order, and place them on top. If they say no, you strip out the four outjogged cards and place them on the bottom. You will repeat this process three times, and the first and third time you will it exactly as described. However, the second time you do the in-hand reverse faro, you do it backwards. That is, if they say yes, you strip out the four outjogged cards and place them on the bottom. But if they say no, you strip out the four outjogged cards and place them on the top. This is a little confusing at first, but try it with the cards in hand and it will become clear. This automatically places the chosen card at the sixth position! You can end right here, by having spectator A reveal their card. It's a six, of course, and so you count down to the sixth card and it is the one selected.

However, we can strengthen the effect a bit, and reset our Aronson stack by doing it a bit differently. First, have Spectator A reveal their card. Since it's a six, count down in the packet to the sixth card and place it on the table in front of spectator B. Now, you hold the cards in your hand and turn up the top card. You study it and say to Spectator B: "No I don't think that’s your card is it?" Tell them they can return to normal and resume telling the truth. They will agree that it is not their card. You now table the card, but you start the simple process of restoring your Aronson stack. The cards in your hand are cards 2 to 10 except for the chosen card and the six of clubs. You will place the seven cards in your hand onto the table one at a time in an overlapping row. Each time, you state that the card is not the chosen card. Get Spectator B to confirm this. As you build this row, you are putting them back in stack order, but it appears completely haphazard to the audience. You will end up with a row of seven cards, in order except for the missing six of clubs and the selected card. You now state that clearly the six of clubs is not the card that B selected and pick it up and put it where it goes. At this point you can easily determine the selected card because it’s the one that missing from the run of 2 to 10 in stack order. To end the routine, you point out that Spectator A must have been right, since the remaining card has to be the one that B selected. But then, you ask: "Would I be right to say that the card you just thought of was the Ace of Spades?" (Or whatever it is.) Of course you are right and they will confirm it. For ultimate confirmation, you take the face down card and show it to your audience. All that remains is to replace that card back in order and pick up the row of cards from the table and put them on top of the deck. A double undercut can be used to bring the bottom card to the top of the deck and your stack is now right back in position.

It's a wonderful throw off, in memorized deck work, to do an effect like this that starts and ends with your stack in order. Remember that a spectator did some shuffling during the routine. While it wasn't a full deck shuffle, it leaves the impression that the cards are really mixed up. You can now continue with any other Memorized deck effect and a false shuffle is hardly necessary. It seems unlikely to your audience that a stack could have been maintained. If you then go into something like the Aronson three-phase poker deal, it will be very effective.

After you've done the phase of show the spectator four cards three times, and the chosen card is in the sixth position, you can further "shuffle" the cards. Just do the in-hand out faro action twice more, each time placing the outjogged cards on top. The chosen card will be right back in sixth position again, ready to conclude the effect.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 02:40PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 13)

Nick Pudar's Raining Revelations
With the Aronson Stack

The Thirteenth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis

This is Nick's presentation for Simon Aronson's Center Cut Location from Simon’s book Bound to Please. This effect is based on a simple concept, and is quite easy to do. It's a most puzzling revelation of two selected cards.

Nick presents this as mentalism. He points out that the selection process is designed to make it is impossible for him to have any knowledge of the selected cards. And, it's impossible for him to have any influence over the selection of the cards.

Nick is an executive at General Motors and works in the Corporate Strategy department. He frequently gives presentations to large groups of people, and is always looking for ways to incorporate a magic effect into his presentations. Any effect he uses needs to stand-alone well, and be strong. This routine certainly fits the bill.

The routine is done as a stand up piece; to begin, get two spectators to come up to the podium/stage. While they are coming up to the stage, false-shuffle the deck, but pay no attention to the cards at all. Nick uses Dan Garrett's Underhanded Overhand Shuffle from Dan's Video: "Cabaret Connivery." (Available from Loomis Magic for $32.00 - www.loomismagic.com )

Turn your back and then ask spectator A to hold the deck horizontally, by the sides, and get spectator B to pull out a block of cards. Spectator A is asked to put the remaining cards back in the case, and to put them aside for the moment. Reminds your audience of the completely random nature of what just happened. Then ask spectator B (who is holding the pulled out block of cards) to show the face card of the block to spectator A. A remembers this as "his card." Instruct Spectator B to look at the top card of the packet and remember it as "his card." Then ask one of the volunteers to thoroughly shuffle the block of cards.

Now, turn back to face the audience. Take the block of cards, and hold them up and look at the face of the block. The spectators concentrate on their cards. The rest happens in silence: Run the cards from hand to hand, one by one, and look for the lowest value card (B's card) and the highest value card (A's card). As the cards move from hand to hand, certain cards can be eliminated from consideration, and are allowed to fall to the floor, one-by-one, and sometimes even a few at a time. This does not need to be done quickly. As a matter of fact, it plays well if you do it slowly at first, and then build up the speed throughout. There is no rush. At the end, you will be holding only two cards. Still in silence, both cards are turned to face the audience, putting you in perfect applause pose for the finale of your effect. If you like, you can give the final to cards to your helpers as souvenirs.

It's ok to go slow on the reveal, because it gives the audience a chance to think about how impossible it is for what is about to happen.

Here's what Nick says about his presentational:

I present Raining Revelations by describing a rare magic book I was able to get on the Internet at a used bookstore in Argentina. The proprietor misspelled the name of the book and author, and I ran across it quite by accident. I describe it as a long lost book on mind reading, legendarily known by magicians as having "real" mind reading secrets. I describe that as seriously as I can, with a very slight twinkle in the eye. Later in the evening, I always get a few people wanting to know more about the book, and wanting to know how mind reading really works. That has been fun (and surprising) for me.

Nick feels that the only bad thing about this trick is that cards are left on the floor. It's undignified to have to bend down to retrieve them. I agree that it's awkward to retrieve the cards, and I'd just leave the cards on the floor! The cost of a single deck is not much compared to your fee for a show. You can get two decks for a buck from "Dollar" stores. That’s only 50 cents per performance!

There's something intriguing about seeing cards discarded and allowed to flutter to the floor. I remember vividly the image of Clarke Crandall doing that in his Six Card Repeat Routine and I haven't seen that in thirty years! (Or, I hadn't until I saw him do it again recently on one of the Don Alan Magic Ranch DVD's now available.)

In his write up of the Center Cut Location in Bound to Please, Simon suggests some alternative ways to select the block of cards. You may wish to check his write up and see if one of them appeals to you. And, he also suggests that just one spectator can be used and a single card is selected. This would speed up the proceedings considerably. Simon suggests another procedure, which will shorten the time, needed to zero in on the single selection. He has the spectator deal or cut the packet into three piles and then looks at them and hands you only the packet that contains their card. This reduces the number of cards to about a third of the size of the original block. My own preference is to use two selections because it puts you in position to strike a great applause pose at the finale. And, I think that the time it takes to weed out the cards from the typical block of twenty or thirty cards is dramatically well spent in Nick's version.

You may wish to fan the packet of cards in front of you, rather than spreading them from hand to hand. You can then look over all of them, spotting the highest and lowest stack numbers. Remember that the most fascinating moment for your spectators may be when you drop the very first card to the floor. I'd play this up by making eye contact with one of the spectators, upjogging one card, making eye contact again, and then pulling the card from the fan. Your spectators will assume that it's the chosen card. Then, without saying a thing, you let it fall! For drama, be sure to start eliminating cards slowly, dropping one at a time. Then gradually pick up the pace, occasionally dropping more than one card until you are down to the last two.

Thanks to Nick for contributing this for our Smoke and Mirrors readers.

Incidentally, Nick has created a free software program called StackView for memorized deck work. It's a remarkable tool. In case you haven't seen it, check out www.stackview.com -- the recent new version (v 3.0) is now available.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 02:52PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 14)

Memorized Deck Mastery

The Fourteenth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis

This month will be a departure from my usual practice of sharing tricks and routines that can be done with a memorized deck. Id like to share some thoughts on what constitutes true mastery of a memorized deck and how to achieve it.

It seems obvious that to memorize a deck of cards requires learning 52 associations. The first card is the Jack of Spades; the second card is the King of clubs, and so forth. And that is the starting point. But the truth is that there are four sets of 52 associations, or perhaps I should say mental processes, to learn. They are related, but still distinct.

When I first started to learn the Aronson stack, I used the mnemonic associations that Simon suggested and in two or three days I "knew" that number ten was the Ace of Clubs, number thirty three was the Jack of Clubs, and so forth. But I was slow. I made an audiocassette for drilling purposes. It would give me a number and then there would be a silence during which I would name the card associated with that number. And then the tape would say the card for confirmation. With practice I got faster at coming up with the card. I even recorded a new tape with shorter pauses so that less time was wasted. In a few weeks, I noticed that I was no longer using the mnemonic associations. I just knew that the Jack of Diamonds was thirty-six, for example. But, in practicing some of Simon's tricks with his stack, I noticed that I didn't seem to be as fast as I was when I was doing the drill tape. But sometimes I was.

I'm embarrassed to admit that it took quite a while before the light dawned. But the problem was very simple. I was fast at remembering the identity of the card when I was given a number. But I was much slower at naming the number when I was given a card. Of course! I was drilling only one way. Just because you can spit out "Seven of Spades" when you're given the number nineteen, it doesn't mean that you can quickly recall "nineteen" when you're given the "Seven of Spades." I think that learning the stack with mnemonics had obscured this simple fact. I had learned that the 24th card was the Three of Diamonds by associating the image of the Roman Emperor Nero to the image of a dime. (If you don't know the phonetic alphabet, you won't understand that association, but don't worry about it. You'll still get my point, I'm sure.) I used that mental picture in the beginning to go in either direction. 24 to 3D, or 3D to 24. But when, as Simon predicted, the associations dropped away, you're left with two different but related stimulus response patterns to practice.

And so, I made a new drill tape. Starting with the name of a card, then a silence during which I would give the number, and then the number spoken on the tape for confirmation. With these two different drill tapes, I thought that I was on the way to mastering a memorized deck.
Bound to Please - Simon Aronson $28.00

Incidentally, in writing this article, I went back to Simon's section in Bound to Please, to see if Simon had commented on this. And there it was... on page 138: "Practice going both ways in your translations..." He had even underlined the word both. But I had not understood the importance. I do now, and hopefully you do too.

And, I had taken a big step. Alas I was still missing half of the story.

Before I drop that other shoe, please allow me to digress for a moment. I just want to share something about the drill tapes. As you work with the tapes, you get familiar with the order and you may not be responding based on the stimulus alone. In time, for example, you know that the next example after the Three of Hearts is going to be the Seven of Diamonds. And, you may also be learning the response. You say "fifteen" after the Seven of Diamonds, but you may be learning that the next necessary response after the Three of Hearts is going to be "fifteen." So, it's necessary to change the tape from time to time. Make a new one when you begin to get familiar with the first one. Shuffle a deck into random order and record the new tape. When you have three or four of these tapes, you can just randomly grab one for each drill session.

"And now, for the rest of the story," as Paul Harvey is fond of saying. At one point, I started to work on Simon's Histed Heisted. This is a great piece of stand up Mentalism for parlor shows, and I recommend it highly. (It's in Bound to Please, by the way.) During the course of the trick you are going to apparently read the names of ten cards in order from the deck. You'll do it five times, but you are not reading the cards from the shuffled deck. You're actually just reciting the order of the cards in the Aronson Stack. It seemed to me that this was going to be a piece of cake. I was getting pretty fast on responding to my drill tapes. But there were hesitations, and my "thinking" was clearly showing when I tried to just rapidly names the cards in order. Again, it took a while to "see the light." The concept is simple; what I was doing, in attempting to recall the order, was a four-step process. I would say the "Ace of Hearts," for example, and then, I would have to think "eighteenth card... the next card is the nineteenth card... the nineteenth card is the seven of spades." Then I could say it. And that four-step process was slowing me down. Clearly, what was (and still is) necessary, is to know the order of the cards, without referencing their stack numbers. It's one thing to just know that the Five of Spades follows the Seven of Spades, but quite a different thing from knowing that the Five of Spades is the nineteenth card and the Seven of Spades is the twentieth card. And so I devised some new practice drills to work on this. One simple thing that can be done just about any time and anywhere is to just run through the entire deck, speaking each card out loud, or just bringing it to mind. You can do this standing in line, driving, while a commercial is on, etc. Just name the cards... but don't think of the stack numbers. You just know, for example, that the Jack of Hearts follows the Jack of Clubs. Not because they are number 33 and 34.

You can make up a drill tape, of course, and the recorder names a card at random, and you then respond with the name of the next card. Or, when you have a stacked deck in your hand, you can just cut to a card and immediately name the next card. You can then look at the next card for confirmation if you like.

At this point, I suspect that my readers may be one step ahead of me. But, I'll mention it anyway. You need to be able to move through the deck, naming the cards, in both directions. Just recite them out loud going backwards, or make a drill tape going backwards, or cut to a card and name the card above it, not the one below it. I practice the backward order when I reset a deck in Aronson stack order after it's been shuffled. I spread through the faces of the cards, looking for card number 52. (The Nine of Diamonds) When I come to it, I cull it to the bottom, using the Hofzinser Spread Cull. I then look for the two of clubs, then the Queen of Clubs, working my way down in order. When I'm done, the deck is set in Aronson Stack and I've also gotten quite a bit of practice on my spread cull.

There's a hidden piece of good news buried in this analysis. Advocates of other stacks and systems will sometimes suggest that with a memorized deck, you don't have a backup. If you forget your association, then you're just stuck. But, when you understand the different kinds of memory associations at work, you realize that you have not a single backup, but two. For example, let's say that you are trying to remember what the stack number is of the Five of Spades. You've just temporarily blocked and you can't recall. The solution is quite simple. Just see if you can recall the card, which comes before the Five of Spades. Since that's something different, the odds are that you won't be blocked about that. So then, if you can bring the previous card (Seven of Spades) then you can probably recall the stack number of that card as well. And when you remember that the Seven of Spades is 19, then you know immediately that the stack number of the Five of Spades is 20. Of course, you could also have asked yourself if you could remember the card after the Five of Spades as well. It's likely that you will remember that it's the Queen of Diamonds. And then, it's also likely that you will remember that the Queen of Diamonds is the 21st card. And so, again, you can then see that the Five of Spades is the 20th card. Just knowing that you have these two backup systems for every card in the deck will relieve some tension. And that may help you to avoid blocks of this kind in the first place. Of course, if you are blocking on a regular basis, it's also a reminder that you need to go back and drill some more on your memory.

As you continue to work with a memorized stack, you'll discover many other patterns that contribute to "mastery." In the Aronson Stack, it's handy to know things like this:

1. The Nine of Hearts and Nine of Diamonds are ten cards apart. (42 & 52)

2. The Ten of Clubs is surrounded by the Red Jacks.

3. The King of Hearts is surrounded by the Red Fours.

4. The Six of Diamonds is surrounded by the Black Queens.

5. The Three and Four of Clubs are Five cards apart. (40 & 45)

6. The Three of Spades and Four of Spades are twenty cards apart. (17 & 37)

7. The Two and Three of Hearts are three cards apart. (4 & 7)

8. The card following the Two of Hearts is the Nine of Spades, while the card following the Two of Spades is the Nine of Hearts.

This is just the tip of the ice burg, of course. As you continue to work with a memorized deck and learn new effects, your mastery will grow and grow. If you're just starting down the path, remember what I've said about the four different stimulus-response associations that you need to learn:

1. Card.... its Stack Number.

2. Stack Number... its card.

3. Card... the card after it.

4. Card... the card before it.

As I write this, I just read Jim Steinmeyer's column in the October 2003 issue of MAGIC magazine. I consider Jim to be one of the geniuses of our magic community. The quality and quantity of his creations is truly astonishing. In this magazine, he shares a wonderful card routine called Deceptivity. I spent a pleasant couple of hours making it up and recommend it to those of you that are seeking a stand up type routine for use in parlor or small platform shows. He first details a set-up using odd and even cards. But at the end of the article, he mentions that you could just as easily use any card stack or system. Need I mention that I made it up based on the Aronson Stack?

I also just got the 4 new Richard Osterlind DVD's from L & L publishing. Osterlind is another of our great thinkers and performers. I immediately zeroed in on the section in which he explains and performs effects with his Breakthrough Card System. This is a remarkable invention and a powerful tool. But even better, in my opinion, are the effects and presentations that he does with the System. He does a whole host of powerful card magic or Mentalism based on the fact that you can determine the next card in the deck if you just can see or glimpse one card. I'm amazed at the power and simplicity of these routines, and can't wait to incorporate them into my own work. But, since I already know the Aronson stack, I'll be using it. But whether you use Richard's Breakthrough system, or a memorized deck, or just a Si Stebbins stack, I recommend Richard's DVD's very highly. His card effects and presentations rank with the best in the world. And he tips it all in his books and DVD's.

On a personal note... many of you know that I was in a bad car accident about a month ago. I am very lucky to be alive. The car was smashed in very badly from the rear, but then it also burned up completely. Fortunately alert people on the scene pulled my unconscious body from the car before it burned. I didn't become consciousness until I was in the emergency room of the hospital. I had a bad concussion, and lots of bruises, but no broken bones. I did have one cracked rib and that's the only thing still hurting. But, I have the constant ringing in the ears which is called Tinnitus. The doctors tell me this will probably go away in time, but that it could take months. While it's not a debilitating handicap, it certainly is bothersome. Still, I'm lucky to just be alive. To all of you that sent cards, emails, etc., thanks so much.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 02:55PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 15)

Scott Cram's Force Procedure

The Fiftheenth in a series of articles
for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis

This month most of the article will be a contribution by my friend Scott Cram from Las Vegas. With only minor editing, what follows was written by Scott himself.
Here's a sort of "tool" that can be used in the performance of memorized deck tricks that I thought you might enjoy.

Start with the deck in your memorized order. Get the card you wish to force to the top of the deck (this is done as usual, via estimation and correction). Perform Ed Balducci's "Cut Deeper" force. Set all the cards that are face-up onto your performing surface, still face-up, and set the forced card aside, facedown (the spectator hasn't looked at it just yet).

Look at the face card of the face-up pile, and recall the card that falls immediately AFTER that card in the stack (If you are using the Tamariz stack, for example, and you see the QH in the face-up stack, you know the next card is the 3D). Spread the remaining cards in your hand face-up, and look for the particular card you just determined (the 3D in this example). Break the spread so that all the cards from the determined card (the 3D again) to the face of the deck go into the right hand, and the remaining card are held by the left hand.

Drop the right hand's cards face-up onto the tabled pile, then pick this combined pile up and drop it onto the face of the left hand's face-up cards. This reassembles the deck into your memorized stack order, except for the spectator's card.

During this part of the sequence, I'll usually say, "You could have cut to any of these..." and cut this sentence off once I've found the determined card, and taken the appropriate break in the deck. I act like I just remembered the pile on the table, place it into the appropriate spot (although it should look like I'm just putting the cards back randomly in the middle), and continue, "I mean, you could have cut to any of THESE cards." You then have the spectator take a look at their card, and continue with the trick.

If, through this sequence, you've forgotten what the forced card is, you can simply look at the face card, and determine what the next card in your stack is (you don't even need a secret glimpse, because all the cards are facing you!). That will be the card that was forced. After the identity of the forced card is magically revealed, you simply place the card on top of the deck, double undercut the top card of your stack back to the top, and proceed with your next memorized stack miracle!

This great thing about this sequence is not only that it forces a card, but also with all those cuts that THEY themselves do, it creates a wonderful illusion of a well-mixed deck (in addition to any false shuffles you've thrown in)!

There is no trick in the above write-up, but I've found that this procedure can inspire some creativity. Here's one trick that I created after I discovered this idea:

The performer false shuffles the deck, and then has the spectator give the deck a straight cut. The performer says, "Normally, I'd have you take the top card after that cut, but let's dig a little deeper down in the deck to make sure your choice is truly random."

The procedure then goes on as above, and the forced card is discovered during the reassembly of the stack.

The performer then false shuffles the deck, and then, holding the deck in facedown dealing position, proceeds to turn the cards face-up one by one, and claims to be "memorizing the deck". After the performer has gone through all 52 cards quickly, they name the selected card, identifiable as the only one they never saw.

This is just a basic idea to help you see the possibilities. I hope you find this worthwhile. Feel free to use this in your column, Dennis!

-Scott

Thanks, Scott. I appreciate your contribution a lot, as I'm sure do all of the regular readers. And, Vegas will probably be the location for our gathering. Not sure of dates yet, but perhaps I'll have something to announce in February as I plan to talk to as many people as possible at the World Magic Seminar in Vegas in January. If any of the regular readers of these articles plan to be there, please let me know. Perhaps we can organize a little get together and talk memorized deck work and discuss our little convention.

I'm happy to announce hat my first DVD is being replicated right now and that I'll have the first batch before Christmas. It's called the Dennis Loomis Knot Routine... Plus! I think it is the most comprehensive collection of magical knots and rope flourishes ever assembled on a single video. All of the standard knots are here and taught as clearly as possible, but so are a lot of rarer items that have never been on video before. Some will be thrilled to hear that Bill Spooner demonstrates and teaches his legendary SnapKnot for the first time on video. A couple of magicians that have seen an advance copy have said that this alone is worth the price of the DVD. For any of you that will be at WMS in Vegas in January, I'll be there as will Bill Spooner. I'll be happy to show you in person any of the Knots from the video and work with you. The DVD will be available at some of the dealer's booths as well.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 03:01PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 16)

Spelling to Color, Suit, Value, and Card
With the Aronson Stack

The Sixteenth in a series of articles for the Smoke and Mirrors E-ZINE
by Dennis Loomis

On page 45 of the recently released English version of "Mnemonica" by Juan Tamariz, the great Spanish mem-deck worker shares a trick you do with his stack. The descriptive title is: "Spelling the color, value, suit, and card." Those of you that know my work can guess that my first reaction was: can it be done with the Aronson Stack? The answer is yes, and the explanation is the subject of this article.

The effect: a spectator selects a card and it's lost in the deck. The performer does a series of spelling effects; when he spells red, a red card appears on the final letter. If he spells black, a black card appears on the final letter. He repeats this with two card values (a King and a Five in the Tamariz version) and all four of the suits. Finally, he gives the deck to a spectator who spells the name of his chosen card. As he reaches the final letter, not only does he land on his card, but he discovers that the card is reversed in the deck. And, following all of this, the deck is easily reset into Mnemonica order.

Before I started searching for the correct sequence of cards in the Aronson stack to duplicate this effect, I was skeptical that I would find one. The remarkable string of factors necessary seemed to be unlikely in a random stack. However, good fortune was with me, and I discovered, not one, but three different ways to do it. Each one has a minor discrepancy. But, the original Tamariz routine has a similar discrepancy. In his version, when you spell each of the suits in turn, you spell three of them without the final "s." But, when you spell the fourth, you have to include the "s." This happens just before the grand finale, where the spectator spells to his card. In the versions I've discovered with the Aronson Stack, it happens earlier. All four of the suits are handled consistently just before the spectator is given the deck to spell to his selection. I like this better. I'm pleased that it worked out this way.

Let's dissect the effect. I don't have permission to explain the Tamariz version, so I'll just describe my versions with the Aronson Stack. For the Tamariz version, you'll have to buy "Mnemonica." But, if you're a mem-deck user, you just have to have this book in your library. Don't take my word for it, read the reviews by Jamy Ian Swiss and Mike Close in GENII and MAGIC. And, Loomis magic has Mnemonica at a very competitive price.

First, you need to force a card. I'll start with my favorite version. For this one, you force the 9S. (Card number five in the Aronson Stack) It's near the top and easy to reach when you're in "home" position. You can use any force that doesn't disturb the stack order, but you must get the card back to its regular position (5th) afterwards. What I do (or will, when I start performing this), is to spread the first four cards, sight counting, and cull the 9S under the spread with the Hofzinser Cull. The spectator touches any card they wish as I continue to spread the cards from my left hand to my right. When they touch a card, I out-jog it a bit, and break the spread just below the selection so that it becomes the bottom card in my right hand. The 9S is still under the right hands cards. Offering to let them change their mind (they seldom do), I take the right hands cards from above in biddle grip, I square them up and tilt them up so that they can see the bottom card. It's not the card they touched. Because of the cull, it's the 9S. On second thought, I remove the card and hand it to the spectator, allowing them to show it around to the others. As this happens, I place the two halves of the deck back together and hold them in dealing position in the left hand and fan the top six or seven cards of the deck in a small fan. When everyone has seen the card, I take it from the spectator, and without looking at it, replace it back in the 5th position. Because it may look a bit suspicious to replace the card so close to the top, I immediately give the deck a false cut and then do a Charlier Shuffle. (Also known as the Haymow.) I do my own handling of it (described in an earlier Smoke and Mirrors Article) which allows me to displace five cards from the top of the deck to the bottom. At the end of this write up, I'll repeat the information published earlier so you can use this. As an alternative, you can simply catch a break under the 9S when you return it, and do a double undercut to bring it to the bottom. Either way, the 9S is now on the bottom.

Now, you do a remarkable demonstration of spelling. You'll spell the colors black and red, the values seven and three, each of the suits, and then the spectator spells to his selected card. In each case, the spelling brings you to whatever you've just spelled.

To begin, say something like: "To show you how well I've trained these cards, I'll spell some colors, values, and suits. On the final letter, we always get what we spelled." You then say "black" and spell it out: B, L, A, C, K. You can proceed two ways. You can take a card from the top of the deck into the right hand for each letter, each one going under the previous one so that you have a block of five cards in your right hand. You then tip up the block to show that you have indeed landed on a black card. If you know the Aronson stack and remember that the 9S is on the bottom, you'll know that the black card is the AC. Alternately you can take the four cards into the right hand the same way, but then use the block of four to flip over the card on the top of the left hand's talon. It will be a black card; the AC. As soon as the spectators have seen this card, you flip it down and take it under the block of cards in your right hand and put the block on the bottom of the deck. You are going to repeat this procedure over and over, spelling first "red" then two values, and then all four suits.

I suggest that you begin slowly and then build the tempo up to the last suit. Then, stop dead and really sell the final phase, which is where the spectator does the spelling themselves and finds their own selection.

So, right after you've found the "black" card, you say: "If I want a red card, I spell R-E-D." As you spell, you perform the same actions as above and end up displaying the 2D.

You will do the same actions for the values "Seven" and "Three." But, you have to cheat just a bit on the seven. Unlike all of the other cards in the sequence, you will have to spell S, E, V, E, N, and turn over the NEXT card, not the card that corresponds to the N. One way to disguise this is to switch your procedure, and place each card to the bottom of the deck as you go. As you say "N" you also put that card to the bottom and then address one of the spectators and ask "What do you think I get?" He'll probably reply "Seven" and you then flip over the top card of the deck face up. It will be a Seven… the 7H. The momentary break in the action as you solicit and get the spectators answer, will help disguise the slight difference in your procedure.

Of course, there are other approaches. As you spell seven, you can simply grab two cards together as one somewhere along the way. If you go quickly, this "double deal" can be done without deceptively. You can slow down and actually do a double lift on one of the cards as you take it. Your choice.

After you put the seven to the bottom of the deck, you're home free. No more cheating is necessary. You can focus on just selling the effect. You will now spell the value "three," and each of the four suits. An appropriate card appears on the final letter each time. All you need to know is that you use the singular terms (Club, etc) and the order will be: Heart, Diamond, Spade, and Club. I like to say: "If I want a heart, I spell H, E, A, R, T and I get a heart." This wording makes the use of the singular term logical. It may help you to remember the suit order if you remember that you do the two red ones first, and then the black. AND, you do the major suit first in both cases. Or, you may want to remember the simple mnemonic phrase: His Darling Seemed Clever (Heart, Diamond, Spade, and Club.)

Amazingly, you will end up on a card of the proper suit each time, and when you finish the Club, you're exactly in position to spell the chosen card: N, I, N, E, O, F, S, P, A, D, E, S and the card that corresponds to the final S will be the 9S. However, I recommend that you adapt the Tamariz handling and let the spectator do it themselves. If you are a little leery of this, you can "supervise" the procedure. One interesting approach is to give them the cards, and then pretend to read their mind. They think of the card and you spell it out loud. They duck one card to the bottom for each letter you say. When you reach the final "s" of Spades, the card will be the 9S.

And, your Aronson stack is still in order. Just replace the 9S on the top or bottom, cut the 9D to the face and you're "home."

If you've been reading carefully, you may have noticed that we haven't explained one detail. In the Tamariz version, the chosen card appears face up. And that's a nice visual punch to the already strong climax. How? Well, once the card is on the bottom of the deck, you have to reverse it, retaining it on the bottom. Here are some handlings:
You can simply do a one card "Half-Pass." Or, you can control the 9S to the top, not the bottom. Palm it off with either a two handed palm or a one handed top palm, turn the deck face up and display the bottom card, noting that it's not the selection. You then turn over the deck face down, adding the palmed card to the face of the deck as you do so, and then turn over the top card to show that the selection is not there either. Either of these will get the bottom card reversed. If you don't do a palm or half-pass, you can do the routine without having the selection reversed. Or, create a reason to put the deck behind your back or under the table and reverse the 9S while the deck is out of sight. A simple verbal excuse for this is to say: "Some magicians find a card with the deck hidden (put the deck out of sight as you say this and reverse the 9S) but I'm not going to do that. In fact, I'm not even going to find your card… you are! But first…" and you start the spelling patter. Quite a bit of time will take place before the reversed card is revealed, so they're unlikely to remember that you concealed the deck.

The other two versions are similar. In one, you force the 10C, and in the other, you force the 8H.

In both cases, you get the card back to its original position, and then get it to the bottom of the deck. (Reverse it, if you like.)

For the 10C, I'd do an estimated cut, trying to bring it to the 6th position from the top. That means trying to cut about 29 cards. (35 is the stack number of the 10C, and you subtract 6). As you square the cards, glimpse the bottom card of the deck. I just did that, and I see the 7C. That means I was one card off in my cut and that I need to cull the 7th card, not the 6th. As I begin spreading, I just sight count the first six cards and cull the 7th. Later, when I return the 10C, I have to put it back at the 7th position, and then control it to the bottom.

The full spelling sequence for the 10C is as follows:

R, E, D: 10H
B, L, A, C, K: KS
Q, U, E, E, N: QS
J, A, C, K: JS---(The "cheat")
T, W, O: 2H
C, L, U, B: 6C
D, I, A, M, O, N, D: 7D
S, P, A, D, E: 5S
H, E, A, R, T: 7H

Then the spectator spells to his card, the 10C.

You must cheat on the J, A, C, K sequence, just as you cheated on the S, E, V, E, N sequence in the first routine.

For the 8H sequence, I'll let you enjoy discovering the "path" yourself. I can assure you that it works nicely, and that you have to "cheat" once. If you can't figure it out, drop me an e-mail, and I'll send you the solution. (deloomis@mindspring.com)

The reason I prefer the 9S sequence is that you can go directly into the force from Home position with no need for the estimated cut. But, it's not hard to do the other two versions.
Theoretically, you could learn all three of these, and alternate them. The difficulty is that the different spelling sequences may be hard to remember. Still, with some determination and some mnemonics you could do it. For myself, I'm going to add the 9S version to my repertoire.
Here's a repeat of a part of my article on my variation of the Charlier or Haymow shuffle and how it can be used to move any number of cards you wish from the top to the bottom:
I believe that I originally learned the Haymow shuffle from Royal Road to Card Magic by Hugard and Braue. I've done it for years, and was rather surprised, in discussing it with my pal Gene Anderson that I was doing it differently. I checked Gene's instructions and also the Royal Road again, and indeed, what I'm doing is somewhat different. I don't know how I fell into this action. Perhaps I read the instructions wrong in the first place. But, it works just the same even though it looks quite different. For completeness, here's how I do it:

The deck is held in the left hand dealing position and a bunch of cards are pushed off the top into the right hand. The number is unimportant, but I push about half of the deck. The left hand is raised until it's just above the right hand and the right fingers push a small block of cards from the top onto the bottom of the left-hand packet. This is probably six or eight cards, but it's not important. The left hand is lowered back to its original position, and the left fingers push a small block of cards onto the bottom of the right hands cards. Again the left hand is lowered and the right hand pushes off a small block of cards onto the bottom of the left-hand cards. If you're pushing off roughly the same amount of cards each time (except for the first time, of course) then the packets in the hands remain about the same size and you can keep going as long as you like.

When you stop, if you have a corner or belly short in your deck, you can easily cut the deck back to starting order. This is not necessary for the first two phases of the routine. You will want to do that for the third and fourth phase.

So now, let's use it to accomplish something: moving a block of cards of any size from top to bottom. My primary use for it is as a way to get ready for the Simon Aronson Three Phase Poker Deal from his book: Bound to Please. I do not intend to explain that routine, but you must begin the routine with the ten of spades on the bottom of the deck. This is the eleventh card in the Aronson Stack. I do this in the process of the Haymow Shuffle. The deck is cut approximately in half, but the upper half goes into the left hand. To do this, here's one simple method: With the deck held in dealing position in the left hand, the right hand comes over and takes the entire deck from above in Biddle Grip. The right index finger swivel cuts approximately half of the cards back into the left hand. This is the original top half of the deck of course. With some help with the fingertips and thumb of the left hand, the cards in the right hand are moved into a dealing position in that hand as well.

You begin the Haymow Shuffle by pushing a block of cards with the left thumb off of the top of its cards onto the bottom of the left hands cards. But instead of a random number of cards; push off exactly three cards. This is very easy. Now the right hand pushes off a block of cards from the top of it's half onto the bottom of the left-hand cards. This can be any number; I usually do four or five. Again, the process is reversed and the left hand pushes off a block of cards. Again, it pushes off exactly three. And again the right hand pushes a random number of cards off the top of its pile onto the bottom of the left hands cards. The third time that the left hand pushes cards into the right hand; it again pushes exactly three cards. At this point, you've pushed a total of nine cards off of the cards in the left-hand pile. Again the right hand pushes any number of cards onto the bottom of the cards in the left-hand pile. Finally, the left hand pushes just two cards onto the bottom of the cards in the right hand. The right hand now places its entire pile onto the bottom of the left hands cards and the deck is squared. You have transferred exactly 11 cards from top to bottom, no other mixing has been done, and you have the ten of spades on the bottom ready to do the Aronson Poker Deal.

You can move any number of cards you wish. For example, if you wanted to move fifteen cards from the top to the bottom, the left hand pushes four cards in it's first "turn." four more cards the next time, four more cards the third time, and finally just three cards. To move larger groups, you may want to move five or even six cards each time. Keep a running count in your head. In the above example, as I do the shuffle, in my head I say: "Three, six, nine, and eleven."
I hope you find this simple procedure a useful addition to your arsenal. As always, I invite comments, suggestions, ideas, questions, etc. You may reach me at:
deloomis@mindspring.com

Since writing the first draft of this article, I've been in touch with Simon Aronson about it. It's his strong opinion that the spelling sequence in Mnemonica which allows this routine was not originally planned. It was discovered afterward. Simon's probably right… he usually is.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 03:18PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 17)

Prediction a la Kruskal
With the Aronson Stack

By Dennis Loomis and Simon
Written by Dennis Loomis


On page 45 of the recently released English version of Mnemonica by Juan Tamariz, there's a trick called: "Prediction a La Kruskal." It was devised by Antonio Jose Arenillas for the Mnemonica stack. I wondered if it could be done with the Aronson Stack. After considerable investigation, I'm pleased to reveal that it can. I worked this out shortly after getting my copy of Mnemonica. When, I shared it with Simon Aronson, he created a brilliant addition which makes for an even stronger effect.

The Kruskal count or process was named for Rutgers mathematician Martin D. Kruskal. It was designed to be done with a shuffled deck, but was not successful 100% of the time. By using the Aronson Stack with the appropriate prediction card, we can guarantee the success of our trick.

First, the magician predicts a card. This can be a written prediction on a piece of paper, a card from another deck in your pocket, or any other prediction procedure you like.

Next, a spectator is asked to cut the deck. The cut is restricted to the top half. The cut off packet of cards is turned face up on the table, revealing the card the spectator cut to. A counting process is used to move through the deck to a final card, which turns out to match the prediction.

In the original Kruskal Count the Aces count as one and the face cards are valued at five.

Let's work through an example. With the deck in Aronson Stack order, let's say that the card cut to is the Ten of Spades. The spectator deals ten cards face up onto the Ten of Spades, arriving at the Queen of Diamonds. Since a face card was reached, the spectator deals five more cards and arrives at the Queen of Hearts. This process is repeated, arriving at the Four of Diamonds next, then the Ten of Clubs, the Four of Clubs, and the Six of Diamonds. Since there are only three cards remaining, the count can go no further, and the Six of Diamonds becomes the "selected" card.

With a new procedure for the count, and with a new starting point, we can perform a strong prediction routine. In Mnemonica, Arenillas and Tamariz have changed the procedure for the face cards. Instead of valuing them as five, they are spelled. If a Queen appears, the spectator spells Q-U-E-E-N as five cards are dealt. For the Jack and King, only four cards are thumbed over since those cards spell with four letters. In fact, my effect with the Aronson Stack will work with either process, but the original Kruskal procedure often leads to a disadvantageous situation which I will explain later. So, I use the spelling procedure with the face cards.

You need only do two things, and the trick is virtually self working. First, you must cut the Five of Diamonds to the face before starting, and your prediction must be the Queen of Hearts. For the past few days, I've been carrying a Queen of Hearts from another deck in one pocket so that I can do this trick. I simply pull the card out, with its back to the audience, and place it somewhere in view. It's lucky that the Queen of Hearts is the card that works with the Aronson Stack; it's a card often named by laymen.

The spectator can cut to any of the top 24 cards. In discussing this with Simon Aronson, he suggested the following patter to explain why their choice is limited to the top half of the deck: "This is a counting trick. We'll count down a random number, using whatever number you cut to. So cut off less than half the deck so that we have some cards left in which to do the counting."

Just follow the procedure outlined above, spelling the court cards and counting the values of the others, and your path will always lead to the Queen of Hearts.

Here's a chart showing the path taken for a cut to any of the top 24 cards:

(Zack's Note: Originally, there was a chart here, formatted specifically for Dennis' site. I have reformatted and I have added a " // " barrier for each table cell.)

1.) 7C // 10C // 4C // 6D // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

2.) 4H // JC // 4S // 2S // KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

3.) KH // JH // 10H // QS // JS // 9S // KD // AD // 7S // QH

4.) 4D // 10C // 4C // 6D // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

5.) 10D // 9H // 2C // JS // 9S // KD AD // 7S // QH

6.) JC // 4S // 2S // KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

7.) JH // 10H // QS // JS // 9S // KD // AD // 7S // QH

8.) 10C // 4C // 6D // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

9.) JD // 3C // KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

10.) 4S // 2S // KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

11.) 10H // QS // JS // 9S // KD // AD // 7S // QH

12.) 6H // 4C // 6D // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

13.) 3C // KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

14.) 2S // KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

15.) 9H // 2C // JS // 9S // KD // AD // 7S // QH

16.) KS // 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

17.) 6S // QC // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

18.) 4C // 6D // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

19.) 8H // KC // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

20.) 9C // 2H // AS // 3H // AC // 10S // QD // QH

21.) QS // JS // 9S // KD // AD // 7S // QH

22.) 6D // 5C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

23.) QC // 5C // 6C // KD // AD // 7S // QH

24.) 2C // JS // 9S // KD // AD // 7S // QH


COMMENTS

1. The trick will work if the Queen of Hearts is cut to the bottom, but then the counting and spelling procedure will proceed to the very last card. It looks better to have one card left on the table.

2. If you use the original Kruskal count procedure of valuing the face cards as "5," the trick will work. However, in some paths, you will arrive at the King of Spades, the Queen of Spades, the Jack of Spades, the Ace of Spades, and the Ten of Spades. This is because of one of the poker deals built into the Aronson Stack. This suggests a stack. So, I prefer to avoid it by using the procedure of spelling the face cards worked out by Arenillas and Tamariz.

3. The initial cut can go quite a bit deeper. With one exception, all of the cards up to the Six of Clubs will work. That's the top 33 cards of the deck once you've cut the Five of Diamonds to the face. However, it will not work with the 9 of Diamonds. I recommend using Simon Aronson's patter given above, and if they cut a little deep, have them turn the packet face up. If you see a card in the range of 28 to 51 or 1 to 8 (stack numbers,) you are fine. If, however, you see card 52 (Nine of Diamonds) you react by saying: "I think that's a little deep, will you cut a few less cards?" Then you replace the packet and have the spectator cut again. This should seldom happen as Simon's patter virtually ensures that the cut will fall into the totally safe area of the top 24 cards.

4. If you like to 'Jazz' with the Aronson stack, this trick makes an excellent addition to your arsenal. Since the Queen of Hearts is frequently named, just go into this trick when it is. You will have to cut the Five of Diamonds to the face, of course.

5. If you are proficient at 'Jazzin' with the Aronson stack, you can eliminate any restrictions on the cut at all. If the cut falls in the safe area of the top 24 cards, you continue with this trick. You can even do so if they should cut into the eight card block immediately below the Nine of Diamonds. (Just remember that these are stack numbers one to eight.) But, if the cut falls on the Nine of Diamonds, or below the Six of clubs, you simply do not do this trick. Just revert to your normal 'Jazzin' procedures.

6. The reason that the Kruskal count works well with the Queen of Hearts as the target is that there are two cards which lead directly to the Queen (The Seven of Spades, and the Queen of Diamonds.) And, the paths which lead to those two cards are mutually exclusive. If you look on the chart at the path from the top card of the deck (the Seven of Clubs,) and the path from the second card from the top, you'll see that they're completely different. No cards appear in both of those paths. Any card which begins a path which crosses either of those two paths will lead inexorably to the Queen of Hearts. Fortunately, with the Aronson stack, the next twenty two cards all do this.

7. In Mnemonica, Arenillas and Tamariz give their method for repeating the effect. This can easily be done with this version. After you complete the effect, replace the Queen of Hearts on the bottom of the deck. You can then repeat the entire routine, with the Five of Diamonds as your prediction. In fact, you can use any of the following cards which are near the bottom of the deck: Ace of Hearts, Eight of Spades, Three of Diamonds, Seven of Hearts, and Five of Diamonds. Just return the Queen of Hearts to the bottom of the deck, and slip the card of your choice from the above list to the fifty-first position, and you are set.

THE ARONSON ADDITION

I told Simon Aronson about my discovery of how to do "Prediction a la Kruskal" with the Aronson stack. A couple of days later, he had worked out this brilliant variation. In Simon's version, the Kruskal procedure will lead to a card previously selected by another spectator!

Begin with the deck in Aronson Stack order. Spread the stacked deck for a selection and removal. The selection must come from the lower half of the deck. Actually, it must fall from the 28th card to the 50th card. This is not difficult. Simply begin spreading cards from left to right with your left thumb as you begin to ask the spectator to take a card. Move quickly, and by the time he can respond, you have passed the first 28 cards or so. Then, slow down and let them choose a card as it goes by. Don't let them pick either the bottom card or the one adjacent to it.

Have the spectator show the card to the other spectators, and as he does so, get a break between the 7H and the QH. Simon works with the 5D as a short card, so it's easy in his case to catch a break one card up from his short card. He suggests that you may also want to pencil dot the Seven or Queen to facilitate this. You could put "punch" work into one of those cards as well.

After the spectator has shown the card around, split the deck at the break to have the selection returned. Obtain a new break two cards down. This is very easy to sight count.

Now double undercut to your break. The 5D will become the face card of the deck, and the selection will be two cards above it. Now proceed with the Kruskal procedure outlined above, and your final card will be the selection! As Simon said: "This opens up the possibilities greatly."

When the effect concludes, you need only replace the selection in its proper position and your Aronson Stack is intact.

COMMENTS ON SIMON'S ADDITION

1. Here's an alternative procedure I worked out for the selection process: Begin by cutting the Five of Diamonds to the face. Have someone just touch any card they like as you thumb cards slowly into the right hand. (They must touch one of the top 23 cards.) Break the deck below the card they touch and tip up the cards in the right hand to show them their selection on the face. You do NOT square up those cards. As you replace the spread cards in your right hand onto the cards in your left, Hofzinser cull the chosen card. The way you're holding the cards makes this quite easy. As you close the fan, slip the culled chosen card between the 7H and QH. (The next-to-the-bottom-card and the one above it.) Now false shuffle and/or cut and you are ready to proceed with the Kruskal Count.

2. You can create a similar effect using a procedure from Mnemonica. Begin by forcing the Queen of Hearts from a different deck. Have the card tabled but not revealed until the end of the effect.

You could use a gaffed forcing deck, like a one-way deck, Svengali Deck, etc. Or, you can use a sleight of hand force. If your force is deceptive, you create about the same effect as with Simon's addition.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 07:49PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 18)

Mary Mowder's Memorized Deck Solitaire
Dennis Loomis' Addition to Shuffle-Bored with the Aronson Stack
Aronson Anti-Faro

Written by Dennis Loomis for the December 2004 issue of Smoke and Mirrors


Mary Mowder's Memorized Deck Solitaire:

Despite the title, this is not a game that you play just for fun. (Although you can do that.) It is a technique for practicing your mastery of a memorized deck stack. And, when you're finished, you'll have your deck in memorized deck order.

Begin by shuffling your deck. You are going to deal out a layout for the "standard" game of Solitaire. Since there are so many forms of solitaire, I'll explain. First deal a row of seven face-down cards on the table. Then turn one card from the deck face-up and place it onto the face-down card at the left end of the row. Then deal a face-down card onto the other six face-down piles. Now deal a face-up card onto the second pile from the left, and deal five cards face-down onto the face-down piles. Continue this until you have seven piles of cards and each one has a face-up card on the top.

In standard Solitaire, you can only play a single face-up card or a stack of face-up cards onto the top of one of the piles. (The normal procedure is that the card played has to be one lower in value and the opposite color of the card on the pile. For example, if you have a Three of Spades showing on top of a pile, you can place either of the red twos onto the Three.) In Mary's game, you can play a face-up card or a stack of face-up cards either on top of the face-up card(s) or UNDER the face-up card(s) on any pile. As in regular Solitaire, when you move a face-up card or a stack of face-up cards onto a different pile, you then turn up the face-down top card of the pile from which you removed the card(s).

We'll going to run through a sample game and give you a few examples of the procedure as it progresses. These values are for the Aronson Stack. But the same game can be done with virtually any full deck stack in which you can determine the card before and the card after a given card. After the initial deal, the following face-up cards show. From left to right: 3H, 7S, 5H, KH, KS, 3D, and JD.

The first step is to see if there are any plays that can be made in the layout before you start to turn cards face-up in the remaining part of the deck (talon). Look at each card in turn to see what card could be played onto it, or under it. First consider the Three of Hearts. Its stack number is 7, the card before it in Aronson Stack order is the AS, and the card after it is the 6C. Scanning the face-up cards, neither of those cards is visible. Go on to the 7S. It's the 19th card. The card before it is the AD, and the card after it is the 5S. Neither of those cards is visible either. In this particular example, there are no plays possible in the initial layout. By determining that, you've drilled yourself on the stack numbers and the cards before and after for each of these seven cards.

Now turn up the top card of the talon. In this example it's the 9H. That's the 42nd card and it follows the 2S. Scanning the cards, there is no 2 of spades present. The card that follows the 9H is the KS and that card happens to be visible on top of the 5th pile. Since the 9H is one card lower in the stack it is played under the KS. (But on top of the face-down card in that pile.) Arrange those two cards in overlapped fashion as in typical in Solitaire. As play progresses and these stacks of face-up cards get longer and longer, it is only necessary that you can see the top and bottom cards of the face-up row.

It is now possible that the new card among the visible cards could play onto another face-up card. So, recall that the card before the 9H in Aronson Stack order is the 2S, and look for it. Since that card is not visible another play cannot be made. But, if the 2S had been the top card of any pile, you would have moved both the 9H AND the KS on top of the 2S. That would have exposed the face-down card under the 9H and you would have turned it face-up and it would be available for play as well.

In this case, the top card of the talon is turned up; it's the AS. Since this is the sixth card, it can be played under the 3H (#4). Lift the 3H, and place the face-up AS on top of the face-down single card. The AS is then placed face-up onto that card and the 3H is placed on top of both, overlapped so that the indexes of each are visible.

Play continues in this fashion, following the "rules" of Solitaire. But, feel free to change the rules to suit yourself. The basic idea is to practice your memorized deck skills. One thing that's helpful is to complete each game. This assures that you get some drill on all of the cards. Unless you "cheat," this won't happen often. When you've gotten to the point where no more plays seem possible, remove one of the stacks of face-down cards from under one of the face-up stacks, and add those cards to the deck. And, don't place any limit on the number of times the deck can be run through. To randomize the drill, shuffle the deck before each new run through. If you get stuck, remove another stack of face-down cards from under another stack. In this way, you'll ultimately end up with all of the cards in one full stack. (If you end up with two stacks that cannot be assembled "properly" it means that somewhere along the way you've made a mistake in playing a card.) Your assembled stack will probably have to be cut between the 9D and the JS to return it to original Aronson stack order.

This game can be done with any memorized deck, but also with the Si Stebbins, Eight Kings, or Hungry !@#$%^& orders. It can even be done with the Osterlind Breakthrough System, although you will have to develop facility working both forwards and backwards in it.

Dennis Loomis' Addition to Shuffle-Bored with the Aronson Stack:

For our second topic, let's take a look at Simon Aronson's wonderful effect: Shuffled Bored. Despite the title, I doubt if your audiences will find this "boring." The routine is described in the final section of Simon's great book: "Bound to Please." I like to use Paul Green's presentation which is based on the TV game show "Jeopardy." You'll find this routine on Paul's DVD: "In the Trenches." Of course, the trick requires a special full deck stack. But, Alain Nu came to the rescue and discovered a way to do this remarkable effect using a deck stacked in Aronson Stack Order. You'll find the complete write up for it, with Simon's suggestions, on Simon's Web Site: www.simonaronson.com

I would like to suggest an alternative procedure to the slip cut process described by Simon and Alain on the Web Site. So, if you're interested in learning this, take a deck stacked in Aronson order in hand, and follow along. While toying with the deck after your preceding effect, hold it in dealing position in your left hand. With your right hand, cut 36 cards (or as close to it as you can manage) and just separate the deck slightly at that point. By tipping the left side of the deck upward, you can peek down into the break and see where you're at. As soon as you see the card, you can adjust cards either way so that you can get a break between the Jack of Diamonds and the Four of Spades. As you tip the deck back down to horizontal, transfer the break to the left little finger.

If possible, allow some time to elapse as you begin the introduction into the effect. When you're ready to cut the deck as required for the beginning phase of Shuffle-Bored, you first do what appears to be a straight cut. It's not. Begin by swivel cutting all of the cards above the break into your left hand. As you place the remaining cards in the right hand on top of the cards in the left hand, you do the Kelly Bottom Placement. This brings the Nine of Diamonds to the bottom of the deck. Just above it is the Jack of Diamonds, and you are ready to begin the Shuffle Bored procedure by turning the deck face-up and spreading to the Six of Clubs. (It's easy to find because it's just three cards to the left of center.) Cut the deck between the Six of Clubs and the Eight of Diamonds, giving the slightly smaller group to the spectator and you continue with the standard Shuffle-Bored Effect. When you finish the trick, the deck is no longer in Aronson Stack order. But it is still in a sort of "Divided Deck" condition. Simon explains how you might take advantage of this on his web site.

Aronson Anti-Faro:

Finally, in his brilliant book "Mnemonica" Juan Tamariz includes a procedure he calls the Anti-Faro. It was originally published in his book "Sonata." There are several variations of this procedure. And we're going to focus on the "Out-Anti-Faro 4" from page 322 of "Mnemonica." All of the procedures are designed to nullify the effects of one or more Faro Shuffles. I particularly like his ideas for justifying these procedures which appear on page 323 of "Mnemonica." Briefly, he claims that this is the surest way of completely mixing up a deck of cards and that's why it's used in the casinos in Monte Carlo. As he's explaining this, he deals the deck out into 16 piles of cards and then reassembles them in what appears to be a very haphazard manner. In fact, it's all carefully worked out to nullify a series of 4 out Faros he's done before.

I think that this would be an excellent way to introduce a deck of cards and convince the audience that it's truly mixed up. Since it's worked out to produce the same results every time, it can become what amounts to a very effective false shuffle. Not that it doesn't change the order of the cards. It certainly does, but if we could calculate the proper starting position, then we could end up with the deck in any order we like.

I've done that for the Aronson Stack. Here it is for your use:
From the top down: 9D, JD, 5S, 2H, 6H, 8S, 3H, 9H, QH, AC, 4C, 4H, 2D, QS, 10D, 8C, 2C, 10C, 7S, 5C, 10H, AH, AS, 2S, 7H, 8D, 6S, 7C, 5H, 9C, 4D, 7D, QC, JH, AD, KC, 4S, QD, 9S, 3C, 3D, 6C, KS, 5D, 10S, 8H, KH, KD, 6D, JC, 3S, JS

With your deck preset in this order, you can introduce the cards, spread them to show they are fairly well mixed up, but then claim, as Tamariz does, that you are going to mix them in the surest manner possible, as done by the casinos in Monte Carlo. You then quickly deal the cards singly into 16 piles, and do either the one handed or two handed pickup explain by Tamariz on page 322 of Mnemonica.

One interesting feature of this stack is that several cards are already in their Aronson Stack positions. For example, the Ace of Clubs is at the tenth position, and the Two of Diamonds is at the 13th position. This is fortuitous. It gives us a way to secretly introduce this deck into play. Assume that this deck is in one of your pockets and you're working with a second deck. Spot and then force either the Ace of Clubs of the Two of Diamonds. Either of these cards is in position to be spelled in the Aronson Stack, a feature that Simon built into the six cards from positions 10 to 15 in his stack. Once the card has been forced, it can be returned to the deck in any manner you like, and a spectator can shuffle the deck. Then, you place the deck into your pocket. For the first time, you ask the spectator to name his card. When he does, you reach into your pocket and pull out cards one at a time. You spell one letter of the card's name with each card you remove. A-C-E-O-F-C-L-U-B-S, or T-W-O-OF-D-I-A-M-O-N-D-S. You put the first card face-up onto the table and place each card onto it. There appears to be no particular order to the cards. (Even to users of the Aronson Stack.) But, on the final letter, you bring out the chosen card itself. You then remove the rest of the deck and place it face-up on top of the tabled pile. The cards were removed from your stacked deck, of course, and at the conclusion of the trick you've switched in the stacked deck. You're now ready to do the Tamariz Anti-Out-Faro 4 procedure and your deck will be in Aronson Stack order.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 07:55PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 19)

Magic vs. Mindreading

Written by Dennis Loomis for the January 2005 issue of Smoke and Mirrors

The trick by the above name was created by Ted Annemann; you'll find it on page 236 of the "ANNEMANN" book by Max Abrams (The Life and Times of a Legend.) But, Richard Osterlind also performs and explains it on his new series of DVD's entitled "Easy To Master Mental Magic." (Both are available from Loomis Magic at www.loomismagic.com .)

This is a great trick with two decks of cards, each with the same 15 card stack on top. It's convenient, if not coincidental, that the Aronson Stack has the necessary stack in position right on top. That's because Simon built the same kind of spelling effect into his stack. However, the Annemann routine has a great "hook" which is the patter theme. It's a demonstration of the difference between what a magician would do, and what a mind reader or mentalist would do in the way of a card routine.

In my walk around work, I usually have two decks of cards set up in Aronson stack order, although occasionally I lose the order in one of the other of them. However, it's not difficult to reset the deck right in performance, and my eighth article in this series goes into some detail about that. (All of the articles in this series are available on my web site at www.loomismagic.com free of charge.)

So, if you have two decks in Aronson stack order you can go right into this killer routine. I carry two decks of the same color, while Osterlind does this routine with a red deck and a blue deck. Annemann did not specify that, and it makes no difference: the routine is equally good with two decks that are the same.

You can do a shorter version of this with just a single deck. You use the same basic patter, and it's not bad. But, the second climax, with the second deck really takes this effect into the "killer" category.

Osterlind has a third climax with a prediction in an envelope. That's not in Annemann's version, but it's certainly worth considering. I won't go into that here, because it's Richards' addition. But, I urge you to get Richard's set of Easy to Master Mental Miracles on DVD. If you do mentalism, this is a must-have item for your library.

Annemann suggests the use of a short card, and Osterlind uses a corner short for this effect. I don't, and will explain some alternatives in a moment.

The basic effect: Two decks are brought forth, and the performer offers to explain the difference between what a magician does, and what a mentalist or mind-reader would do with a deck of cards. A spectator is asked to select either deck and place it in his pocket. No force or equivoque is necessary, since both decks have the necessary stack. He then explains that a magician would probably handle the cards a lot, showing them well mixed, possibly shuffling them some more, etc. During this, the cards are spread face up so that the audience can see they are well mixed. Then they are false shuffled to maintain the 15 card stack on top. A jog shuffle is one good possibility, here. Then the performer explains that a magician would have a card physically chosen. He pantomimes the selection procedure, but does not have a card actually selected. He explains, that when the card is returned to the deck in his hands, he has his opportunity to do some magicians sleight of hand. Then he locates the card in some mysterious manner.

The performer explains that a mentalist would do no such thing. He would simply have someone think of a card, and then read their mind. Having said that, he shows a fan of cards to one spectator and asks that they simply think of any of the cards. The fan is then placed onto the deck proper, and the cards are shuffled. (Another false shuffle to retain the top stock) The performer asks the spectator to name his card, and the card is spelled to, removing a card from the top of the deck for each letter in the cards name. On the final letter, the card arrived at is turned over and it is the card merely thought of.


The performer explains that since a card was merely thought of, then he must have read the spectators mind and then put the card into the proper position. Then he asks the spectator if he things that he might have known, in advance, which card he would merely think of. Whatever the spectator says, he is asked to remove the 2nd deck from his pocket.
Then the performer has him remove the cards from the box, without changing their order at all, and again spell down to the card he thought of. He's directed to turn each card face up as he deals it onto the table. When he reaches the final letter, sure enough, the card he mentally selected appears. This is very strong, and makes a great closer.

By now, my readers are probably ahead of me and understand the basic idea. As you may know, the tenth through 15th cards in the Aronson stack were intentionally chosen by Simon because they all can be "spelled" from the top of the deck. The tenth card spells with ten letters; the eleventh card spells with eleven letters, and so on. While Annemann did not use all of the same cards, his stack achieves the same thing.

All that remains is to force one of these six cards. Annemann did this in a very simple way, and I recommend it highly. He picked up the top 15 cards of the deck, and fanned them in such a way that only the bottom six cards of that packet could be seen. Only the spectator that looks at the fan realizes that he has only a very small group to choose from, and he will probably think very little about that. The other spectators probably think that he sees a lot more cards.

Annemann used a short card to simplify cutting off the 15 card setup, but since this is my working deck for many effects, I don't do that. I'll give you three different

ways to achieve the same thing. First, if you are good at thumb counting (as Max Maven is) during the preliminary patter, after you've completed the false shuffle, simply drop your hand to your side and thumb count 15 cards as you talk. Hold a break at that point, and when the appropriate moment arrives, lift up the deck and cut to the break with your other hand. Alternatively, if you are any good at all at estimation, you can easily cut to within a card or two of 15 cards. Glimpse where you are at, and, if necessary, add or take away a card or two so that the 15th card (Seven of Diamonds) is on the fact of the packet you are cutting off. Finally, and easiest of all, just thumb over cards and sight count them until you have fifteen and remove that packet. I usually thumb over three at a time, so five quick pushes and I'm right where I need to be. It's probably wise to glimpse the face card before proceeding to be sure that you're in the right place.

That's really all there is to it. Follow the procedures outlined above and both the first and second phases work easily. The second phase is all done in the spectator's hands, and is automatic.

In the Osterlind version, the cards from the first deck are dealt face down on the table when spelling to the selection. This reverses the order of that block in your stack. It's simple enough to avoid: just deal cards from one hand into the other, retaining the order of the cards. When the second deck is removed from the spectator's pocket, and he spells to the same card, the fact that he deals them into a face up pile retains the order. Just replace the tabled cards on the top of the deck, and both of your decks remain in Aronson Stack Order.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 08:02PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 20)

Memorized Think of a Card

Written by Dennis Loomis for the June 2005 issue of Smoke and Mirrors

This month, let's take a look at my version of the Milt Kort/Dai Vernon Classic "Think of a Card." My old Michigan pal, Ron Bauer, has recently released the 19th Volume in his Private Studies Series. I recommend this series highly and have all of them in my personal library. You can get them at www.loomismagic.com or from most magic dealers. The 19th is called "All-Outs Think-of-a-Card." It's Milt Kort's version of the Vernon "Think of a Card from More Inner Secrets Of Card Magic.

The routines differ in some particulars. In the Vernon original, a spectator thinks of one of 13 cards. They are shown to him one at a time and are numbered 1 to 13. The spectator has to remember both the number and the card at that number. In the Kort routine, only nine cards are used, but the magician simply shows a fan of nine cards to the volunteer who remembers any one of them. He need not take note of nor remember any number. In both versions, the magician then holds the deck behind his back or under the table and does "something" to the cards. Later, the deck is fanned to show that he reversed one card. In both cases, this card might be the thought of card, but is usually not. Then, the performer gets some information from the volunteer. In the Vernon routine, the spectator reveals the number his card was at, but not the identity. In the Kort version, the spectator names the actual card. Then, the magician shows that he had predicted the card by counting from the reversed card to the selection.

In both cases, a simple set up is required. For Vernon's original you need to get a deuce in the fourth position from the top of the deck. In the Aronson stack, the two of hearts is in fourth position, and you can do the Vernon trick with no other preparation. The routine will disarrange your Aronson stack a bit, but not badly. In the Kort version, you need to get a trey fifth from the top of the deck. While the fifth card in the Aronson stack is not a trey, the three of hearts is in position seven. It's a simple matter to get a break under the top two cards and undercut them to the bottom. Now the three of hearts is in the fifth position.

I have a little preference for the Kort version since it does not require the spectator to remember both a number and a card. So, my version is based on the Kort Routine. I'm not going to tip any more right here, because you really should get Ron Bauer's #19 manuscript. Once you do, you may prefer to do the original Kort Version. But, if you are carrying a deck set in Aronson stack with you, then you may want to try mine. If, like me, you have the top card (Jack of Spades) as a scallop short, then you do not have to put the "work" into one card that Kort used.

To do my version, false shuffle the deck, and then double undercut the top two cards to the bottom. Form a fan of the first 9 cards. The three of hearts should be right in the middle of the fan. The spectator now thinks of any of the cards. You now return the fan to the top of the deck and cut it to the middle.

When the deck is out of sight, you cut the scallop card to the top, and then transfer six cards from the top to the bottom, retaining their order. Flip the top card face up (it's the three of hearts) and cut it to the center and bring the deck in view. Following the Kort procedure, you now have the spectator name their card. As soon as they do, you explain that you reversed one card in the deck, and ribbon spread the deck widely on the table. Of course, if they named the three of hearts, you have just done a miracle. But if not, you explain that you did not turn over the thought of card, but a card that would lead to the thought of card. Then, use the series of outs so thoroughly explained by Ron Bauer in the manuscript. Your deck is still in Aronson stack order, although you will need to cut at the scallop card to get to home position.

For those of you not familiar with the Kort routine, mine is quite a bit stronger because it is not necessary for you to look at the cards. In Kort's version, once you bring the cards back into view, you have to fan them so that you are obviously looking at the faces. But with the deck memorized, the cards remain ribbon spread face down on the table. When the spectator names his card, you count to it "blind." You're going to fry your brother magicians that know the Kort routine, so this is a good version to do for the guys at the Magic Club meeting.

I've reworked a lot of "standard" magic routines like this one to utilize a memorized deck. The advantage of this is that you can carry your memdeck, and at any time, do two or three good card effects. At that point, it seems unlikely that the cards could be in any kind of stack or order, so you can then go into a strong routine based on the memorized deck, and really kill your audience.

I'll be at the IBM Convention in Reno. Should you spot me, feel free to come up and say hello. Perhaps we can chat over a cup of coffee. I'd like that.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 08:10PM)
MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 21)

Out of My Mind (Out of This World with a Mem-Deck)

by Dennis Loomis

I've been on pins and needles, waiting for the release of Dean Dill and Michael Weber's new version of Out of This World. They call it New World, and it is a great new effect. Certainly one of the cleanest versions of this classic ever released. What I was worried about was that I heard a rumor that the Aronson Stack was involved. I was afraid that I had accidentally stumbled onto their method. It turns out that my thinking and theirs are completely different. So, my subject for this month will be "my" version of Paul Curry's masterpiece, Out of this World.

Out of This World is the effect where the spectator appears to successfully separate the red cards from the black cards in the deck without looking at the faces. You put a couple of indicator cards onto the table, one black and one red. They are separated by several inches, and the spectator holds the face down deck and deals cards onto one or the other of the indicators. At about half way through, two new indicators are placed down. The red one goes onto the pile where the black cards are, and the black one goes onto the pile where the red cards are. Then, the spectator continues through to the end. When he's finished, the cards are turned over to reveal that he has apparently placed every card correctly. It does require that the deck be set up.

The original is described in Paul Curry's Book: Magician's Magic, available from Loomis Magic.

Years after the Curry Version was published, U.F. Grant released his version which could be done with a shuffled deck. He called it "Nu-Way Out of this World." It was almost as clean, and most lay audiences would not see any difference. But, in his version the magician chose each card for the spectator. The magician looked at the faces of the cards as he did so. After about half the deck was used up, he could then hand the deck to the spectator who could simply use the cards in order, or randomly pull out cards.

While the Grant version is excellent, it is a trade off. You are not quite as clean, but you don't have to use the special Curry Set-up.

My version requires a set up, as well. But, it's a memorized deck. As my regular readers know, I use the Aronson stack, but you could do this with any memorized deck. The advantage is that while the deck is stacked, it can be fanned or ribbon spread face up and to the spectators it appears to be well mixed. Since I seldom go out of the house without a deck set in Aronson order, I'm ready to do this version at any time.

The magician does select the cards for the spectator to place, but he doesn't look at the cards as he does so. You're going to have to know the original trick so that you can do the "move" at the end, and you are also going to have to know the Nu-Way version. I find that most magicians are familiar with these. If not, you are well advised to learn them.

To do my version, the deck is shown to the audience, and is apparently well mixed. Do some false shuffles and cuts, ending by bringing the Nine of Diamonds back to the bottom. I have a scallop short cut in the Top card so that I can do this at any time. You can also just fan the deck face up, showing how thoroughly they are mixed, and you spot the Nine of Diamonds and cut it to the bottom.

A simpler way to begin is just to keep the deck in Aronson Stack original order.

The effect begins by placing two indicators cards on the table face up, a few inches apart. Thumb over to the 4th card, pull it out and turn it face up. (It will be the 2H.) We are going to take advantage of the fact that in the Aronson Stack, only 3 of the first 11 cards are red. We will be depleting red cards from the top 24 cards of the deck, and so we take our red indicator from there. This appears to be a random choice to the spectators, but since you now need a black card, you tip up the deck with the faces toward you. You thumb over the bottom card (9D) and remove the next card. (2C)

When you have explained the premise to your volunteer assistant, your ready to begin having them "read" the colors of the cards. You will apparently pull cards at random from the face down deck. In fact, you will pull only red cards right up to the 22th card. (AH)

To begin, thumb over the first three cards and the next card will be the 9S. You do not reveal that, but in your mind you say "Nine of Spades" and push it over, the you say "Ace of Spades" as you push over the next card. You know these because the deck is memorized. As you start to push over the next card you say "Three of Hearts," and since it's red, you outjog it. You now ask the spectator whether he things that card is red or black. If he says "Red" you place it face down onto the face up 2H. If he says black, it goes onto the 2C. You will repeat this process, building up two piles of face down cards on top of the face up deuces until you reach the 3D. I'll give you a couple more examples. As soon as you've placed the 3H on the pile based on the spectators "guess," you thumb over the next card in your hand. Internally you say "6C." As you push the next card you say "8D" and since it's red, you outjog it and let the spectator guess the color. You place it onto the appropriate pile. You then thumb over the AC and 10S, saying their names to yourself, and outjog the next card which you know to be the 5H. The spectator designates the color and you put it onto the proper pile. You continue in this fashion until you place the 22nd card onto a pile. It's the AH.

As you go along, you may find that you lose your place. Or you're just not sure where you left off. There is an old "touch" with Out of This World, which not only plays well, but also will allow you to get a check of where you are. Since all of the cards you are pulling out are red, when the spectator calls one as "black" you can say: "No, I'm afraid you got that one wrong." And then you turn it face up. If you are proceeding properly, it will be red. If you have gotten confused about where you are in the stack, it could be black. But either way, you see the card. Then you know exactly where you are.

When you have placed the AH, the situation will be that you have two piles with a face up deuce on the bottom, and typically 4 or 5 cards on top of each one. At this point you will place the two new indicator cards. One is a face up black card on top of the pile which has the red deuce on the bottom. The other is a face up red card on top of the pile, which has the black deuce on the bottom. The next two cards, in the spreading process, are the 8S and the 3D, so you can just turn them up and use them.

If you now square the deck, you will have 12 black cards on top. You now hand the deck to the spectator and instruct him to continue as before, just taking cards off the top, and placing them down on either pile without peeking. As he does this, you count the cards and stop him when he's done 12. This will be about the same number of cards as were used before the new indicator cards were placed. The cards on the table are now in the standard Out of This World layout and you finish by showing the "correct" stack, doing the switch move (many have been devised) and showing the other stack.

The spectator has divined all of the cards correctly.

Note that this version of the effect does not use the entire deck. So, it's a little less time consuming. But, if you prefer to do the original effect and have all 52 cards used, you simply continue the first part until you have placed the 6D onto a pile. You then square up the deck and turn it face up. The two cards on the face will be the 9D and the QC. You use these for the two new indicators. The remainder of the pack will be all black cards.
Message: Posted by: Zack_Johnston (Jun 18, 2017 08:16PM)
--The Final Article--

MEMORIZED DECK MAGIC (Article 22)

Texas Hold'em with the Aronson Stack

By Sterling Dare (A.K.A. Lefty the Clown)
Written by Dennis Loomis

My friend Sterling Dare has worked through the Aronson stack to see what happens if you deal a hand of Texas Hold'em. This is so popular on TV today that it's of value to be able to do some routine if the question comes up. Sterling explored all 52 possibilities. I checked through his results and they are accurate. I agree with him that the best case seems to be when you start with the Three of Hearts on top. That's easy since you need only cut six cards from top to bottom and you're off and running. This can easily be done in the context of my handling of the Haymow shuffle. See Articles 5 and 6.

With Hold'em the results will not change as a result of betting and who folds and who stays in. There may be some patter advantages based on that.

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Briefly, in Hold'em each player (4 in this case) gets 2 face down cards. A card is burned to the bottom and three cards are dealt face up. This is called the flop.

A card is burned and another card is dealt face up. I think this is called 4th street, but not sure. Finally, a card is burned and one more card (the river card) is turned face up. There will be 5 community cards that can be used by all the players still in the hand being played.

You use your two hole cards plus any combination of the 5 community cards to make the best 5 card hand of poker. You could use both hole cards and 3 community cards, 1 hole card and 4 community cards, or the 5 on the board and no hole cards.

Betting occurs after the players are dealt 2 cards. Then the Flop. More betting, then 4th card, more betting and then 5th card (River). Final bets and showdown. It doesn't matter for the Aronson demo, but there is an ante, a single blind raise by the person to the left of the dealer, and a double blind raise by the person second to the left of the dealer. In true Hold'em, it is sometimes worth staying in on a marginal hand if you have one of the blind raise hands.

With the 3 of hearts on top of the deck:
1st player gets: Two Pair- Aces & 3s
2nd player gets: Two Pair-Aces & 5s
3rd player gets: Two Pair-Aces & 8s
4th (dealer) gets: 3 Aces

With the 5 of hearts on top
1st player gets: Two Pair-8s & 5s
2nd player: Folds
3rd player gets: Pair of Aces
4th (Dealer): 3 Sevens

With the Ace of Hearts on top:
1st player gets: Two Pair 10s & 4s
2nd player: Two Pair 10s & 4s
3rd player gets: Two Pair 10s & 4s
4th (Dealer): Full House

With 7 of Hearts on top
1st player gets: Two Pair Js & 10s
2nd player: Two Pair Js & 10s
3rd player gets: Two Pair Js & 10s
4th (Dealer): Full House

With 7 Clubs on top:
1st player gets: 2 tens
2nd player: 2 fours
3rd player gets: 2 kings
4th (Dealer): Two Pair-Tens and 4s

The best demo hand for me is the one with the 3 of Hearts on top.

There are other combinations in which other players get straights, flushes and even 4 of a kind, but none for the dealer. Others have the dealer winning, but the players get zilch for hands.
Message: Posted by: BobMillerMAGIC! (Feb 8, 2019 12:24AM)
[quote] And, I wanted to get away from having to hand write 365 cards into a diary. For one thing, my handwriting is terrible. And so, I came up with the idea that there actually is a Lucky Playing Card for every day of the year. Why not? We each have our own Zodiac Sign, or Birthstone, even the appropriate flower... why not a lucky playing Card. And so, I printed out and bound a little fake booklet. [/quote]

- That was a quote from Dennis Loomis in 2013, Article 6.

I was happy to see another magician recommend printing a card booklet instead of hand-writing it. I used to hand-write a whole calendar of cards, but now I use PreDate, it mixes printed card icons, and printed "hand-written" card names. Any card stack can be created for any year. see www.BobMillerMagic.biz.