Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.
Jack Shalom
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Postby Jack Shalom » September 30th, 2017, 6:14 am

An article on three-card monte you may enjoy: ... ard-monte/

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Re: Monte

Postby MagicbyAlfred » September 30th, 2017, 1:44 pm

Jack, that is a beautiful piece; thanx for sharing it. You are a superb writer. Really fascinating portrait of the psychological and theatrical aspects of this notorious and nefarious scam that has parted many a fool and his money.

If I was pressed to say what the strongest and most entertaining card routine that I do is, the 3-Card Monte would be a strong contender for number 1, numero uno! I am basing this on audience reaction. Right up there with the ID and Card on Ceiling. As "Erdnase" observed well over a century ago, "But there is not a single card feat in the whole calendar that will give as good returns for the amount of practice required, or that will mystify as greatly, or cause as much amusement, or bear so much repetition, as this little game; and for these reasons we believe it worthy of unstinted effort to master it thoroughly."

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Re: Monte

Postby observer » September 30th, 2017, 2:29 pm

When I lived in New York there was a monte mob every block or two along lower Broadway. I was somewhat clued in, just from studying magic and ancillary activities, but everyone I knew - pretty intelligent people for the most part - truly believed that a mark could possibly walk away with more money than he started with - that "they let you win sometimes just so people will keep on trying." I thought it was an interesting example of trying to apply "real world" thinking to an activity that does not play by those rules.

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Re: Monte

Postby erdnasephile » September 30th, 2017, 8:09 pm

Thanks, Mr. Shalom--enjoyed the article!

I used to work with a lady who 2 to 3 years ago wanted to tell me about this new game she played on the strip near the Excelsior in Vegas. She proceeded to perfectly describe a monte scam, including how the guy before her won a bunch of money. She ended up losing a couple hundred before the monte gang broke up. She was convinced it was a game of chance, until I told her what had really happened. Oddly, she wasn't even mad--just puzzled as to how someone could take her money that easily.

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