Eric Jones impromptu moment August 2011 You Tube

Addresses new and interesting links to other sites (not listed on the Genii website) that merit attention.

Postby MaxNY » 12/02/11 11:24 AM

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Postby Richard Hatch » 12/02/11 12:18 PM

Woody Aragon's "How to find your other half" in his A BOOK IN ENGLISH. Great trick!
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Postby Pete McCabe » 12/02/11 12:56 PM

Mike Rozek showed me Woody's trick at the Castle and it fooled me completely. I kept thinking it was one of those Hummeresque things, but the method is much simpler and greatly enhances the freedom of the spectator's choices.

He also showed me a wonderful version of ACAAN from the same book. It's on my Christmas list.
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Postby Steve Mills » 12/08/11 11:30 AM

I loved the trick, but Woody's patter just won't work for me, I can't pull it off.

Eric's approach is a great stepping off point for me.

Thanks.....
The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog. – Mark Twain
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Postby Luigi Anzivino » 12/14/11 02:16 AM

Amazing. I was on the fence about buying Woody's book, and this performance convinced me. The trick is just... you will do it to yourself and be fooled, how often does that happen? ;)

For the math inclined (which I am not), in the description in the book, just before the down-under deal, Woody has you reverse the stack by counting the days of the week, a fairly cumbersome and unmotivated procedure: what is the purpose of that? Eric Jones skips it, and I'm delighted to see that the trick works just the same. Is there something I'm missing?

Also going in my repertoire as soon as possible, from the same book: Maverick and his version of the Ten Card Poker Deal.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 12/14/11 09:56 AM

I was surprised when Eric dropped that bit because I consider it one of the strongest features of the routine. Prior to this, the specs are invited to toss 1,2, or 3 pieces away or to move the same quantity to the middle, leaving them with different numbers of pieces. So the count doesn't merely reverse the pieces, but moves them to different positions for different spectators. It isn't intuitively obvious that no matter where the key piece winds up (specs aren't thinking about this, but I am), it is still in a position to be the last card in an under-down deal. My patter to introduce this bit is "Okay, now we're going to shuffle for a week," which gets a laugh because we've already been "shuffling" for awhile. So, for me, the bit both plays well and adds to the mystery. Of course, it's completely optional. What a nice routine.
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Postby Richard Hatch » 12/14/11 11:30 AM

I agree with Steve. Without the additional "counting" procedure the mate is still on the bottom of the stack, where it has been since the beginning. With the counting procedure (which can be motivated many ways. Recently someone at the local club made it topical by spelling "Holiday" and moving one card for each letter, rather than using the days of the week) and a different number of cards for different spectators, it is much more difficult to "reverse engineer" since the former bottom card half ends up in different places (but still ends up where it needs to be after the "down under" procedure).
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Postby Q. Kumber » 12/14/11 12:38 PM

You might also like to check out the Tamariz version of this trick from Verbal Magic and the recent GENII Tamariz issue.

Dani Daortiz also has a version on DVD 1 of Utopia.
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Postby Richard Hatch » 12/14/11 02:00 PM

Incidentally, the counting procedure referred to above does not reverse the cards, but simply cuts them in a precise location, to set up the down and under deal. I'm surprised it works without this procedure. Does it in all cases?
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Postby Richard Hatch » 12/14/11 02:38 PM

I just re-watched the Eric Jones presentation and not only did he eliminate the counting procedure, but also the spectator's choice to throw away the top one, two, three or no halves, which is what really seems to make the procedure random to me. His works because everyone has 7 halves with the mate on the bottom throughout. The strong response he got may indicate that the procedures mentioned may not mean much to an audience, even though it is what impressed me about Woody's original version.
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Postby Luigi Anzivino » 12/14/11 02:50 PM

Got it, thanks! So the transferring procedure accommodates for different spectators having different numbers of pieces in their hands. But will it work if spectators are allowed to choose how many pieces to exchange with each other? That would be amazing, if I could say "you can pass either 1, 2, or 3 pieces to the person on your left, your choice". But that would mean that potentially some spectators would end up with more than 7 pieces in their hand, if they receive more than they pass along... Intuitively, I think that would break the procedure, but maybe not?

As for the impact of the procedure, I don't know, I'd have to try it both ways, but there is something nice about cutting that out to me, since the whole procedure is already quite complicated, and judging by the reactions of the people in the video, I think it plays quite well as Eric presented it...

Cheers,
Luigi
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Postby Richard Hatch » 12/14/11 03:17 PM

Luigi, the spectators may exchange any number of pieces as long as they exchange the same number with each other (2 for 2, 3 for 3). Those pieces are placed "in the middle" of the packet, leaving the bottom card undisturbed.
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Postby Bill Evans » 12/14/11 03:53 PM

I've done it both ways. Last Thursday night, I performed it the way Woody teaches it in his book, and last night, I performed it pretty much the way Eric did in the video. I got a stronger reaction out of the latter. The "love" premise really didn't work for me. I plan to try it again without the love theme, but following Woody's version to see what reaction that gets. I just need to work up a presentation that fits me.

At this point, I would like to say that the book is horrible and don't buy it...I would like to...but I can't...it's killer! I finally got to see Woody's act at the IBM in Dallas and it was very strong. My kind of stuff and it fooled me badly. I couldn't wait to get this book.
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Postby Pete McCabe » 12/14/11 04:56 PM

I'm pretty sure that if you want to eliminate the "spell the days of the week" bit then you have to also eliminate the "throw away 1, 2, or 3" bit. Also the contrapositive: if you allow the spectator to throw away 1, 2, or 3, then you have to spell the days of the week (or something else that moves 7 cards from top to bottom one at a time).

You don't get that many chances to use the word contrapositive in conversation.
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Postby Bill Evans » 12/14/11 06:20 PM

Pete McCabe wrote:I'm pretty sure that if you want to eliminate the "spell the days of the week" bit then you have to also eliminate the "throw away 1, 2, or 3" bit. Also the contrapositive: if you allow the spectator to throw away 1, 2, or 3, then you have to spell the days of the week (or something else that moves 7 cards from top to bottom one at a time).

You don't get that many chances to use the word contrapositive in conversation.



That is correct. That's why I am doing it Eric's way until I come up with a reason for moving the 7 cards. Off the top of my head, I'm thinking that if you realize that someone's name spells with 7 letters, then you can appoint that person as group leader to help make sure everyone is doing the procedure right. "Jessica, is everyone up to speed?" Then at the end, as a tribute to the group leader, everyone spells his or her name. Or cities. Or something other than days of the week. I haven't thought this through yet.
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Postby Richard Hatch » 12/14/11 08:05 PM

Seems like it is just a presentational problem problem to motivate the 7 moves following the discarding of 0, 1, 2 or 3 cards. I did the effect last night at a company party for the owner of 8 radio stations, since it could be framed as an effect that could be done "on the radio" (which it could!). I had those who worked in talk radio discard one card, those who worked for the country/western station discard 2, those who worked for the oldies station discard 3 and the others discard none. Since all stations are on the air seven days a week, we used the 7 day procedure before the "she/he loves me/loves me not" presentation to see if they did indeed locate "their better half". It played well for this audience of about 60 people. I think the effect is open to lots of such customizing. I think a generic presentation using a compatibility test ("eCardmony.com... discard one half if you like blondes, two if you prefer brunettes, 3 if you like redheads") followed by a week of "speed dating" and then the "she loves me/she loves me not" motivation for the down and under procedure would play well. I personally like the pun of "finding your better half" and the "she loves me/she loves me not" framing of the down and under deal procedure, but I'm sure there are lots of other presentations that would work as well.
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Postby Luigi Anzivino » 12/14/11 10:49 PM

Ok, I understand what the transferring of 7cards procedure accomplishes. I guess the reason I don't like it and am hesitant to use it is that, out of the whole effect, it's the only procedure that "reads" like the only reason it's there is to make the trick work.

I'm trying to look at the effect from the point of view of the audience, which luckily isn't hard because before I read the explanation, I was the audience!

Every other procedure shuffling, cutting, burying pieces in the middle of the stack, throwing pieces away, etc. seems to add randomness to the order of the cards, and in each case spectators can make individual decisions as to the final placement of the cards they're manipulating. So when trying to work out the trick later on they'll think: "but I had a choice!"

And then comes this long and rigid procedure of transferring cards individually. You can "motivate" it, as in find an excuse for that specific number that might make it seem arbitrary, but it still won't really explain why it's there. And it comes right before another long and rigid procedure, the under-down deal, which is alright in my opinion because it is motivated by trying to narrow the cards down to one.

So, I tried it today, "Eric Jones style" and got expletive-level reactions, which is pretty good in my book... Although one participant somehow messed up the procedure and her halves didn't match. She still thought the trick was great, because everybody else's matched, but I'm going to have to work on striking a balance between strict direction and an appearance of casual randomness. I'm sure it'll get better with experience.

Cheers,
Luigi
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Postby Bill Evans » 12/15/11 01:10 PM

Luigi Anzivino wrote:... Although one participant somehow messed up the procedure and her halves didn't match. She still thought the trick was great, because everybody else's matched, but I'm going to have to work on striking a balance between strict direction and an appearance of casual randomness. I'm sure it'll get better with experience.

Cheers,
Luigi



I have had the same experience. One person in both my groups (8 and 13 respectively) messed up. If you will go back and look at Eric's video, you can see that the spectator with his back to the camera also fails to get his cards to match. I think you are right in that it is a tradeoff between making the effect too strict and making it seem totally random. You can't correct someone who puts a piece on the bottom without the risk of giving it away, or at least the risk of disclosing that the procedure matters. Also, like other participation magic, when the parties have been drinking, it can be a bit of a challenge.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 12/15/11 02:09 PM

It's why I like Woody's original procedure. If you are doing the "She loves me, she loves me not" bit, then there is a "reason" if someone's pieces fail to match. You can make a joke of it. (You didn't fail as a magician; he failed as a lover.) BTW, the couple of times someone's pieces have failed to match for me, the problem was with the first cut. Instead of a clean cut, the spec mushed the pieces together. I am therefore more careful with that part of the instructions.
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Postby Pete McCabe » 12/15/11 02:38 PM

The first cut is not, strictly speaking, necessary.

Alternately you could, for example, have people transfer pieces from top to bottom, one at a time, and stop whenever they want. This would produce the same result with less (maybe) chance of screwing up.

This procedure could be made to relate to the seven days of the week bit. Say you start by having the spectator transfer one card at a time, spelling some wordlike the name of the person whose love they are testing. Now when you get to the 7-card thing, you have them transfer one card at a time while spelling some (7-letter) magic word. This ties both parts of the presentation together. It's just a crying shame that cupid only has five letters.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 12/15/11 03:06 PM

I like the first cut, and the fact that it doesn't have to be dead center. This whole conversation bothers me. Inventors of magic tricks, at least of the caliber of Woody, have usually thought through their inventions very thoroughly. It's a good idea to spend some time with an effect as it was written and completely understand it before rushing to vary it. Thanks to a desire by some to "be like Eric," I am reading suggestions that weaken the original. It makes me sad that it was published.
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Postby Bill Evans » 12/15/11 05:42 PM

Steve Bryant wrote:Thanks to a desire by some to "be like Eric," I am reading suggestions that weaken the original. It makes me sad that it was published.


Steve, I respectfully disagree with your conclusion if you are referring to me. I have no desire to be like Eric, nor do I have any desire to be like Woody. I'm trying to figure out what works for me and trying both presentations to see what gets the best reaction doesn't make me want to be a clone of either. As I said before, I am now working on Woody's handling but with an entirely different presentation because the "love theme" doesn't work for me. I just thought I would share my experience with the process with those who are also working on this effect. I've also shared my touches with you on your effect "The Lake Witch Project". My presentation and touches are different than yours because I did not want to be just like you. Jeez...My bad I guess. No disrespect to you intended as I have been a big fan of your original magic, but I've never wanted to be nor have been "just like" anybody.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 12/15/11 07:07 PM

Sorry, Bill, you were not a target of my comments, indeed no one was in particular. It was a general bit of angst over folks straying from what makes a trick work, not just this one, but tricks in general. But hey, I'm in too good a mood to keep debating. Two new books arrived from Minch today, and I'm in for a great weekend.
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Postby Bill Evans » 12/15/11 09:10 PM

No problem Steve...I actually see your point...it's just that the magicians whom I most respect that have seen fit to try to help me understand what the real secret of magic is, have always stressed that, even if you purchase an effect or book, you shouldn't just be a monkey and spit out whatever you take in even if you have the "right" to do so...what's the point in that. You have to bring something to the table that's you. I just felt the need to clarify my situation and I may have over reacted. Now that I can reflect, it probably is not a good idea to publicly discuss works in progress. This effect is so good in that it incorporates audience involvement to such a high degree, I got carried away.

Have a great weekend with those books, buddy.



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Postby Rob UK » 01/16/13 05:31 PM

The maths of this one does my head in.

Is it true that in either version, either with or without the "Take 0,1,2,3 cards, throw them away ( and then do the 7 card displacement) can you still have people exchange card pieces with each other ( as long as the trade is even?)
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Postby Rob UK » 01/18/13 10:22 AM

Back to answer my own question. Yes, in either version you can have people swap the same number of pieces with each other.
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