[flv width=”480″ height=”290″]http://www.lessonsinmagic.com/vids/20100317/AmongtheDiscards.flv[/flv]

Another great fooler, where you are taking the spectators on a ride they think is going in one direction, but you lead them another direction. Quite a surprise and really can only be topped by something happening within the spectators hands.



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    I can’t recall the first trick or magician I had seen, but I do have vague memories of being a volunteer for a magic show performed by…the Burger King. Yup, the Burger King. I must have been about 11 or so and I had to pop balloons with my pointed fingers (in the shape of a gun), and then a dove appeared. Ooo.

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    I like 2 kinds of card decks: Bicycle and Aviator. Occasionally, I might use a Hoyle deck. Everything else looks odd to me. Now, I’ll work with a borrowed deck that isn’t these brands, but these brands are common and no one ever suspects there’s anything wrong with them should I choose to use a gaffed card (rare). More often than not, gaffs are made using Bicycle cards (if it’s a quality trick, otherwise, it’s some generic deck). Actually, nobody ever suspects the deck when I don’t use gaffed cards, either.

    Anyway, when searching the web for tricks, you may have seen a strange looking black deck with a tiger on it sold by a popular online magic site. I don’t know about you, but the deck just screams “there’s something wrong with me”. If you really think spectators look at the deck, and see you see something that seems impossible, don’t suspect the deck, you’re way off the mark. Maybe I just don’t understand the purpose of using cards like that (can someone enlighten me), but I’m in this business to show that I can create amazing bits of magic and not here so I can show off a really cool deck of cards that has special magical properties.

    On the flip side, when I was younger I sold Svengali decks to kids and adults all day long, and they were some generic deck, which was even bridge size! (Real magic dudes use poker size decks, because they’re man sized – bridge is for the ladies). No one ever claimed the wouldn’t buy a deck because it didn’t match their Bicycle deck at home. No, I’m not going to tell you what a Svengali deck is or how it works…

    So if you can shed some light on this as either a performer or a lay person, please do so, I’d love to hear from you.




    At the end of some tricks, there is something called a “Kicker” ended. Essentially what that means is that the trick has a basic ending (magician finds the card in some amazing way), but then the “kicker” is that the car has a different color back than the rest of the deck. The problem is that sometimes, either the kicker completely overshadows the basic ending (which is great in its own right), or the kicker is timed poorly and doesn’t get noticed after doing the basic ending, when some people think the trick is done.

    As another thing I do when choosing tricks I like and want to perform, I tend to stay away from “kicker” endings, unless it actually makes sense in the trick, and even then, it’s not necessarily an extra part of the trick, but is integrated as part of the trick and so flows much better. Maybe I just like tricks that have a decent flow to them. As of this writing, I don’t have any specific examples, but check out some of the videos I’ve posted to see how well the flow works for me.

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    You know how they say that someone’s handwriting tells you something about them? Well, how about how someone writes out their phone number? I was just going through and updating my contacts, some of whom are on Facebook, and I realized how many different ways there are to write a phone number:


    This is how I write phone numbers, the “proper” method as I like to call it:
    (555) 123-4567


    The no separation method:
    5551234567


    The spaces for separation method:
    555 123 4567


    The all dashes method:
    555-123-4567


    The periods method:
    555.123.4567


    And not to confuse things, but don’t forget those that add the 1 before the area code (and not to mention people outside of the US who have a whole slew of numbers we don’t want to mess with).


    That’s pretty much the lot of them – which kind of person are you?



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    There are essentially two types of flourishes within a magic trick (and although this could apply to coins and other things, I’m being specific to card magic).  The first is something that is obvious to the audience.  An example of this is a card spread or a fan of cards.  The second is something that isn’t really obvious at all.  An example of this would be a count that might hide or miscount the cards.

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