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Papa Legba
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HI, anybody have this? Is it just another version of FREE WILL or does it have something new to offer?
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I'm responding long after the original post, but I just picked this up and like it so far. I thought I'd share my thoughts in case anyone's interested.

I'm hardly an expert. I'm familiar with the Free Will principle and I have Mark Chandaue's excellent book on the subject. I'm a hobbyist. I like doing tarot and palm readings when the opportunities arise, and I like effects that lend themselves to reading-style performances.

I'd say this effect is a variation of the Free Will effect: there are three options, and the spectator makes some choices, which end up matching the options in some way.

I like this version because of its flexibility. You receive two sets of props and there are a lot of instructions for different variations. One set of props and instructions come from John Carey.

I like John Anders's props (an x-ray image of a skull, a jaw and a hand), and I've been trying out a personality-profile type of presentation with them. I've only tried it out a few times, but the reactions have been good. I'm still working on it, but maybe it's of interest. I'd appreciate any constructive feedback/thoughts.

Here's how my presentation looks from the spectator's point of view:

You shuffle and show three black-backed cards (without showing the faces) and talk about different types of learning: some people are visual learners; some are auditory; some are kinaesthetic (or words to that effect). You say that in a similar way, some people prefer to engage with the world through observation, others through discussion, and others through making things. You tell them that you're going to ask them three questions about their preferences.

You ask them to choose: "Do you prefer observation or discussion?" It's a free choice. Let's say they choose "observation." You deal down one card (still face down to the table).

You ask: "Discussion or making?" It's another a free choice. Let's say they choose "making." You deal down the next card, and place it beside the first one.

You say: "That leaves this last card to be 'Discussion'." You place it below the first two cards.

"Last question: Do you prefer observation or making?" When you say "observation," you point to the first card. When you say "making," point to the second. It's still a free choice. Let's say they choose "observation." You move that card to be above the other two. So now you have a line of three vertical cards on the table.

You could also do a brief personality reading about their preferences. For example, in this case the spectator is someone who tends to stand back and watch or evaluate situations before getting involved (because "observation" is their top choice), and when they do, they prefer doing things ("making" is their second choice) rather than talking about them ("discussion"), and so on.

You recap: they don't know what's on the other side of the cards; they didn't know what order the cards were in at the start (you also shuffled the cards before starting); they made all the choices for what each card represents.

When you turn over the cards, the images match their choices: observation is the skull (the eye sockets are prominent); making is the hand (i.e., getting hands-on); and discussion is the jaw (the teeth are prominent).
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