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Topic: Please suggest suitable methods...
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 06:39AM)
Hi guys.

The effect - 8 Xmas presents are on view with different types of wrapping paper. 7 specs all select a present, one is left for me. They all open their gifts and find nice presents. I open mine to reveal a VERY nice present.

This is the bare bones of the effect, which I am working on, based on an idea from a Spellman DVD.

I initially thought of having some Xmas cards which are selected, opened and inside it reads 'Have a great Christmas and enjoy your present - the one with the red bow on.' Or something similar.

I HATE Spellman's method for this type of effect, so it would be great if you guys could suggest something better.

Bearing in mind this will be performed around a table.

Thanks a lot.

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 06:43AM)
Pateo, OR, wrap one of them up in bHs paper. :)
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 06:49AM)
Not enirely useful, but thanks anyway :P
Message: Posted by: Tom Lauten (Dec 14, 2004 06:52AM)
Or Pateo force (marked) card envelopes that contain a Xmas card indicating one of the IDENTICALLY wrapped presents (perhaps a gift tag on each of the presents has a seasonal sticker on it that matches a sticker in each of the forced cards).

This will give you another seemingly random event or at least a degree of apparent separation.

You could also mix and match pateo and classic eqivoques to end up with each person opening a present that looks identical on the outside but has a personal message or present inside! An 8-way Christmas miracle! WOO HOO!!!

Does that make sense?
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 06:55AM)
Surely using pateo on 7 people would just be taking the p*ss! :)

Message: Posted by: Withnail (Dec 14, 2004 06:58AM)
You could try modifying Ted Lesley's Black Magic - that would be ok I think :)
Message: Posted by: Tom Lauten (Dec 14, 2004 07:00AM)
Use an equivoque to break them into 2 smaller chunks first maybe? Yours could be in the second group. Then pateo?
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 07:00AM)
Hi Withnail,

Any futher info?

I don't really have time to buy books and read up as the performance will be this Friday. I am already doing selected items from my repertoire but I thought that I could use this as a nice finish to produce gifts for my work colleagues.


Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 07:04AM)
If you know Maven Method used in "goal mine", I suggest you use this one.

Each spectator chooses one enveloppe, and THEY open it to find inside a christmas card.

BTW, I like your idea for christmas ;)
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 07:06AM)
Is this method suitable for 8 people? I can either have 8 cards for 8 people or 4 cards for 4 couples.

Message: Posted by: Withnail (Dec 14, 2004 07:07AM)
Well, obviously I can't tip methods else I'd be tarred and feathered before you could say "exposure" ;)

Paramiracles (I think) if you can get a copy on DVD has all the info you need.

Basically you get a spectator to number x amount of black envelopes (hence the name), say 1 through to 7.

Then people call out numbers and the envelopes are opened one at a time.

Needless to say, they all contain cards saying which present is theirs (socks, bath salts, etc.) and the one envelope you're left with contains the keys to the Ferrari.

Hope this helps :)
Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 07:14AM)
Gary, the Maven method is suitable for any number of participants.

It's simple, bold, but really effective.
It allows you to focus on presentation, and there's no fear of something going wrong I think.

Mr OSterlind has also a pretty similar approach in his Bank Night effect.
Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 07:16AM)
Yeah you could bank nite envelopes containing descriptions of gifts. But I sense you are after something more direct.

How about you keep the gifts small and just switch the nice one in? Have everyone wait to open theirs at the same time (all the gifts same size, same gift inside even) and do the switch while they are busy opening?

Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 07:26AM)
I did consider a switch but it just isn't practical.

Ideally, I want each person to 'select' a present and one at a time open them. They will have nice presents in.

Then there will be one present left in full view, which I obviously open.

Any ideas?

Thanks a lot guys

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 07:29AM)
Ok, can you use multiple outs and not make the present "nicer", just more obviously YOU? Or does it have to be an "I win" scenario? I am not critizing your idea, just trying to find out more about your requirements.

By the way, if you are looking for a good christmas effect, do consider the prediction in christmas cracker angle. It is fun and strong.

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 07:30AM)
Enveloppes containing a Xmas card with the colour of the wrapping paper written on it. Each spectator gets the gift with the matching wrapping paper. The performer gets the remaining Xmas card.
That's what you get with the Maven method

But sure, if you look for a direct selection of the gifts,whithout the xmas cards, that won't suit.
But I think the Xmas cards is a nice touch for the general looking of the effect and the entertainement value.
But Bambaladam switching method is also a good idea if you want to avoid the Xmas cards.
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 07:33AM)
Is the Maven method on Videomind? Do you know?

Also, in my performance, each person will get a bottle of wine (or similar drink), the last present (mine) will contain just an empty glass, to which I will ask who would like to pour me a drink.

Or something like that, I wont be doing the 'I win, you lose' style performance, definitely not me!

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 07:38AM)
Max Mavens bank nite routine is on videomind, yes.

That could work, if you're ok with people choosing envelopes instead of the gifts.

My idea with multiple outs was that you could make it look like you meant to get what you ended up with no matter what you do end up with. As long as you are subtle and clever, you can remind them of ONE thing you mentioned earlier (and conveniently ignore SEVEN things you mentioned earlier) that obviously mean you meant you would end up with the gift you then proceed to open.

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 07:41AM)
The Maven method is on videomind, the parlor dvd I think.
The effect is called "Goal Mine".

The method will allow you to get the needed "gift" whith no risk of failure.
So using another approach than the "I win you loose" is totally up to you.
Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 07:44AM)

The kismet force (this is in compleat invocation, more than once, also in Punx once upon a time) with the prerecorded message with instructions (move santa's little helper three steps and so on) Just let each player make one move and then pick up their present.

In fact, if you let Santa write the letter to the players, this becomes immensely cute. I think I will do it myself for all my nephews and nieces.

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 07:49AM)
If you want to justify the use of the eveloppes instead of a direct selection of the gifts, you could say that you want to avoid them being influenced in their choice by the color of the wrapping paper, and use enveloppes of a similar color.
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 07:51AM)
Ok, lets turn this thing upsaide down for a second.

I decided to use cards as I thought that this would make the 'forcing' procedure a little easier.

Lets say we forget the cards and just have the presents, what would you guys suggest would be a good way of doing it?

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 07:55AM)

If you can put the gifts on the table in a nine pattern (sorry I don't know how to rework the kismet force for eight offhand, although I am sure it could be done), this could be a good way to go.


Oh woah, way hey I have got it

eight glasses, EACH ONE FOR A SPECIFIC PARTICIPANT (name on it or something), and the ninth gift is the wine bottle! (this can be anything of course, but eight unique gifts and one for everyone, that's the way to use the kismet force here).

This way, the last gift that noone chose, is for everyone!

All parcels need different colors so they can be identified.

This, actually, in a very sweet way, rocks.

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 08:02AM)
Yeah Bamba, I like it!!!!!
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:05AM)
I just watched videomind. I like the idea but it isn't suitable for this.

Think about it, what would I have written on the pieces of paper? Bearing in mind the same thing is written in each one.

The only way to do it would be to have one present wrapped in a different colour paper, the specs all get the red presents, I get the blue one (for example).

This however ruins the surprise ending as the present that I received is obviously different even before being opened.


Exscuse my brain being slow, but whats the kismet force?

My mind is totally drained right now!

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 08:08AM)
Actually If you have in each enveloppe a different wrapping paper color written, the effect works perfectly.

Each spectator gets a different color, but not the one that is for you.

I don't see why you would need them to have the same color written on their card????
Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 08:09AM)
I'm not entirely sure about the name, but it is used in a lot of old effects. Stephen Minch used it in Lovecraftain Ceremonies, Punx in an effect which I believe is called Kismet. Hopefully someone who knows where it is from can help us out with sources and maybe a full explanation in Inner thoughts (if it is public domain). It is a cleverly disguised mathematical thing. It will make more of a CUTE moment in this context than inspire people to join your cult.


If you're performing for family, I'd say it is absolutely perfect.

Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:10AM)
Think about it

lets say I do it with 4 people.

There are 4 presents RED BLUE GREEN and YELLOW

there are 4 envelopes, what goes in them?

lets say I want to keep the RED for me. I would put in the FOUR envelopes - BLUE, GREEN, YELLOW and RED, which means someone could legitimately choose the envelope with RED in.

To cover this you may say, don't put red in any, in which case, what would replace it? another colour? No good, two people may both choose envelopes that contain the same colour!

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 08:14AM)
Yup, that's broken. So why not have them be all the same?

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 08:15AM)
Gary, I pm you with a solution as to not expose method here.
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:16AM)
I assume you mean have all the same colour in the envelopes and all the same colour presents? In which case, what diferentiates the presents from each other?


Cheers Oxygen, look forward to it.
Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 08:17AM)
Here's a discussion on the kismet force


Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:18AM)
Thanks Bamba, will take a look.....

Any other thoughts guys?

I may perform this several times over christmas if a suitable method is devised, your help is always appreciated!

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 08:26AM)

What kind of context will you perform it in?

Message: Posted by: brainman (Dec 14, 2004 08:28AM)
A prepared, big foam die (one number missing - one double)..the missing one is your present...
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:31AM)
The first performance is this friday, in a restaurant at my works christmas dinner. There will be 8 people, 4 couples. I wanted to give each person / couple a bottle of wine or something similar as a christmas gift, quite a nice touch.

Would be good if it is presented as a game of sorts where each person gets a prize.

Message: Posted by: Richard Osterlind (Dec 14, 2004 08:34AM)
I just saw this thread and I couldn't help but be intriqued.

I like the PATEO idea myself. But why not modify it like this.

First, all 8 gifts have "something" inside. 7 have an ornament, Christmas candy or something like that. A Rolex watch or some similar "high dollar" item is in the last one.

Explain that you will "share" your gifts with the audience. One by one, have each person come up and you do the PATEO force with them. But each time you keep the one they leave or the one you choose. (depending on whose turn it is) At the end you still have half the presents. You can make a joke about this!

So you feel guilty about still having 4 gifts and put all the ones you have back into play. You continue and you wind up with 2. You still feel guilty and end by doing a Magician's choice with the last 2. (This will play well because you are using an entirely different method!)

Everyone opens their gift and you win the big prize!

It just seems to me that this would play really well, leave a lot of room for entertainment and not have anything that could go wrong.

Just my thoughts.

Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:37AM)
Hi Richard,

Thanks for your input.

I definitely want this to be an entertaining routine as opposed to just - choose a present, open it up and LOOK, I got a better present than you!

I'll definitely consider this option. My only worry is using PATEO or similar forces over and over might look very suspect.

Any thoughts?

Message: Posted by: Bambaladam (Dec 14, 2004 08:41AM)
It's a game you're playing, not a selection method. If you keep that thought at the front of your mind, and allow yourself to enjoy it and so on, it should be strong enough.

Richard's idea looks neat and crispy!

Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 14, 2004 08:50AM)
OK, firstly thanks a LOT for all your input, but frankly I'm still 'methodless'

I do quite like mavens idea from Videomind, just a shame it isn't really suited to this.

My initial idea was to perform my Final Flashback routine, which I'd still like to do. Therefore I am thinking of 'taming down' this new idea as FF gives a definitive finale.

What do you guys think? It would be nice to use the gifts, but in my mind, that would mean the effect would need to be a final piece.

Message: Posted by: oxygen (Dec 14, 2004 09:32AM)
Done Gary, I pm'd you an idea.
I couldn't explain it without exposing it, so sorry for not puting it on the forum.
Hope you'll find something to do with it.

BTW, I really love Richard Osterlind's idea, as ever with him, it is really entertaining!
Message: Posted by: nichols_me (Dec 16, 2004 07:05AM)
Gary I have just sent you a possible solution via pm, if you don't think it exposes too much (i think its kinda boarderline) post feel free to post it up here for discussion

Message: Posted by: Banachek (Dec 16, 2004 02:44PM)
How about double sided boxes, your gift is a gift certificate for a thousand dollars. Can't say much more without giving out too much method but sure you can figure out where I am going with this.

Another idea would to fairly let them distribute their gifts with one empty chair for you. When they are done, they open their gifts, you pick up the gift on your chair and use the chair switch.

Their gifts are all goofy gifts and yours is a good one.
Message: Posted by: Harry Lucas (Dec 16, 2004 03:17PM)
Given this is the last thing you will do, how about this idea: instead of having a "better = more expensive" gift in your last box, you would find a letter/postcard, which reads something like: by now, everyone helping should have a present in their hands.
The gift you left me with is more than this card. You gave me your precious time on this very special evening I will remember for a long time. Thank you.

Message: Posted by: entity (Dec 16, 2004 05:00PM)
Check out andy Nyman's Diceman routine. Alter it as such:

Have 8 cards numbered 1 to 8. Spectator's choose which card they want you to have. You turn it over (or they can turn it over)and it has a drawing of a present in a gold box. They each choose a card for themselves, turn them over showing red boxes, blue boxes, green boxes, etc.

They open corresponding colored presents. You open the gold one.

Yours is the good gift, theirs are whatever you want.

- entity
Message: Posted by: DYL (Dec 17, 2004 02:59AM)
I really like that idea entity, has a nice feel to it.

Gary, knowing were you work, I'm guessing you need something pretty good, as the people you will be dining with will know most techniques.
Message: Posted by: Dark Thought 13 (Dec 17, 2004 06:52PM)
I hope for Gods sake Gary you have a solution there? You have just had a huge response with dozens of methods, each and everyone of them would work with a little planning.. To be honest it seems a little late to be working on a new closer?

I'd be interested to know how it went?
Message: Posted by: Pharaoh Nuff (Dec 18, 2004 05:39AM)
Maybe you could load the expensive gift into whatever box you are left with.
Or make a switch of some kind.
Message: Posted by: GarySumpter (Dec 21, 2004 04:41AM)
Hi guys,

Thanks a LOT for your input and sorry for not replying sooner.

I actually chose to perform my version of Final Flashback as I know it well.

I am still, however, working on the plot outlined above. I'd like to thank Marc Spelmann for the inspiration to work on this routine.

I think that I will most probably use Max Mavens idea from Videomind. Its simplicity is lovely and makes everything SEEM fair.

Again thanks for your input, it's all much appreciated!

Message: Posted by: Sirus666 (Dec 21, 2004 08:40AM)
GIFTED by Paul Green found in Syzygy based on Tony Griffiths - Penny Move. If my memory is correct...

The method plays on so many different levels. Well worth reading up on and playing with.

Message: Posted by: PaulGreen (Dec 21, 2004 01:32PM)
Thanks Sirus!

This also appears on one of the "Best of" series from Lee Earle. "Gifted" is a killer!


Paul Green