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The one about the three of hearts - Long!

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Steve Maskery

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Alright, alright, by huge popular demand (well, one PM anyway) here's the one about the three of hearts.

In my cabaret act (c1976-86) I used to do an Invisible Card routine. Toss an invisible deck to a member of the audience and ask him to shuffle them.

Me: Have you done this before?
Him: No!
Me: Thought not - you are supposed to take them out of the box first.

You get the idea.

He takes one out and holds it up so no-one can see it, and assures me he's taken the Jack of Spades, or whatever. The invisible JofS goes into an invisible brown paper envelope, which in turn goes into a real envelope. Basildon Bond, IIRC, but that not important right now.

After a bit of biz with the wand etc, the envelope is opened and WOW!, there is a real brown envelope inside that wasn't there before. Not only that, but inside that is a card, which turns out to be - wait for it - the Jack of Spades! To quote Philly, is there no end to this man's talents? Anyway audience goes wild with applause and magician retires to dressing room exhausted. It's a darn good trick and the biggest problem is persuading the audience that the helper hasn't been slipped a fiver to co-operate.

One day I was doing a show for the Student's Union at Nottingham. They were a lively bunch, but appreciative enough. There was one bloke who had been on a liquid diet for a while (Student bash? Surely not!) and whilst he didn't wreck my act, he did make his presence known.

There are a few ways of dealing with this.

1 Fight fire with fire - "Why don't you sit by the wall, that's plastered as well", "Sorry about our friend, L&G, the midwife picked him up by the ears and slapped his face by mistake". Well they were funny in 1975.

2 Get him involved.

So we did the Invisible card routine, and to his credit he went along with it.



He picked the 4 of hearts, and I continued with the trick, produced the card, back to the audience. However, I had made a mistake. Instead of producing the four of hearts, I had somehow managed to produce the three. But I was in full flow of patter, and whilst I was vaguely aware of something being not quite right, I wasn't really aware what it was, and that I was up the creek.

So I continued blithely on, until the end,

"And now, Sir, will you please remind us all which card you chose?"

"The four... no, the three, make it the three of hearts!"

So I simply turned the card round in my fingers and told him it made no difference to me.

I got a standing ovation, and he shut up.

I thought about it afterwards. If I had seen a magician do that, I would not have had a clue how he did it. It was the only time I ever did the trick wrong. It was the only time anyone ever changed their mind. And I accidentally produced the very card he changed his mind to. The odds must be astronomical. I had a vision of God sitting up there on his cloud, looking down, and saying, "You've really screwed up this time, haven't you Steve? I suppose I'd better bail you out".

I promise you I have not embellished this story at all!

I hope it was worth the read.
Cheers
Steve
 

tim

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Great story Steve - but now magic circle rules aside, spill the beans!! I won't tell anyone I promise!! :wink: :lol: :lol:


Chris":vu7m552r said:
PS I used to go to Nottingham so I have a kind of vested interest!
and the winner of the most tenuous reason is......... :lol: :lol:



Cheers

Tim
 

Gill

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Hey - I used to go to Nottingham as well!!!

Poly, in my case, not uni (although the social life at the uni was much better).

Gill
 

Steve Maskery

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Gill, I've just done my Master's at what is now called Nottingham Trent University.

Did you know, part of the Art/Design school dates back to sixteen-hundred-and-frozen-to-death?

Cheers
Steve
 

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