The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

All beginners in magic should address their questions here.
Gerald Deutsch
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby Gerald Deutsch » December 14th, 2017, 8:37 am

This is a great book and I've fooled many magicians with tricks from it.

My feeling, however, is that the chapters should be read in the following order:

I, IX, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, X, XV, XI, III, XIII, XIV, XVI, XVII,

performer
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby performer » December 14th, 2017, 11:31 am

Oh, bloody hell! That reminds me! I have to continue with my annotations! I have been delayed by the various shows that I have to do during the Christmas period and that daft thread about telling lies in magic has quite overtaken me. I shall investigate the new order of chapters that Gerald recommended but alas I fear he is around 70 years too late.

As for fooling magicians I have studied the book inside out and have never fooled a single magician with any of the material. But then I have never been interested in fooling magicians anyway as I believe it can have a detrimental effect on your work if you do too much of it. It affects your mentality in an adverse way and it becomes a very bad habit which can affect your work for laymen. I suspect the tricks in the Royal Road that fool magicians must be the boring ones that I rejected.

Anyway, my annotations are coming along quite well. I have been in touch with both Hugard and Braue in the spirit world and they seem to approve. Mind you, they were both huffing and puffing about the Royal Road DVDs that were previously made. They seemed to be quite upset that nobody had asked their permission to do it. And they didn't understand DVDs anyway. They were pleased at least that I sought their approval before starting my annotations. And they were pleased that it was in book form. They told me that I had been their most successful student of their book so it was only fitting that I updated it a trifle.

performer
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby performer » December 14th, 2017, 11:38 am

Gerald Deutsch wrote:This is a great book and I've fooled many magicians with tricks from it.

My feeling, however, is that the chapters should be read in the following order:

I, IX, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, X, XV, XI, III, XIII, XIV, XVI, XVII,


I did check out that sequence of chapters in the book and I think it indeed would have made sense. I shall mention it to Hugard and Braue the next time I visit them in the spirit world. Too late to do anything about it now. However, in my preface to the annotations I will probably mention it and credit Gerald with the suggestion. With his permission of course.

Robert77
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby Robert77 » December 14th, 2017, 2:33 pm

Counts, Cuts, Moves, and Subtlety, a book of basic card techniques, by Jerry Mentzer.

73 pages, softcover, inexpensive, and worth it.

MagicbyAlfred
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby MagicbyAlfred » December 14th, 2017, 9:17 pm

Where would Chapter II go in the reformatted scheme of things?

Gerald Deutsch
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby Gerald Deutsch » December 14th, 2017, 10:00 pm

I suspect the tricks in the Royal Road that fool magicians must be the boring ones that I rejected.

Here’s two you wouldn't reject: (From the Perverse Magic thread):

Perverse Card’s Across - First Versions Spectator - Participant Seated

Effect

1 “Would you cut off about 1/3 of the deck,” the magician says to the spectator.

2 “Good. Now count the cards like this,” The magician picks up the remaining portion of the deck and drops three cards singly, one at a time counting, “one, tow, three,” The spectator does.

3 “Good Now hold the packet like this,” The magician demonstrates by putting his right hand crosswise over his left hand and the spectator does likewise.

4 “Now look,” says the magician as he picks up the remainder of the deck and holds it in his left and as he riffles he edge with his left thumb, he gestures with that hand and the cards towards the spectator’s hands. He does this 3 times, each time counting one more card than the spectator had.

For example, if the spectator had originally counted 13, the magician says each time he riffles and gestures, “14, 15, 16.”

5 “Count the cards again,” says the magician and the spectator finds she has three more than she did before.

6 “I don’t really understand how that works but I think it has something to do with the way you were holding your hands. Pick up the cards and I’ll show you.” She does.

“You see? You have a little space between your fingers. “17, 18, 19.” The magician again riffles his packet and gestures three times.

He shrugs, not really understanding. “Go on. Count them again.”

She has three more – in this case 19 – and neither she, nor the magician understands at all.

Background

Like so much good card magic, “Three Cards Across” appears in “The Royal Road
To Card Magic.”

It was my friend Peter Marshall who suggested the “repeat”.

I decided to eliminate the force of a 3 to determine how many cards will pass. I
thought it slowed down the effect. I just do three.

And finally, as Perverse Magic, I meekly explain that I don’t know how it works.
The sixth category of Perverse Magic – see this thread above October 2011.





Now You See It

Out of This World requires a set up and I like to do the set up in the course of a previous trick and the trick I use is based on “Now You See It” from “The Royal Road to Card Magic” with some variations which I’ll describe now:

1 A card is selected and shuffled back in the deck and the spectator is given the deck to shuffle.

2 The performer says he needs four chances to find the card and he pulls out four cards.

3 He shows the four cards and none is the selected card.

4 The performer tells the spectator to touch one of the four cards and when she does – it’s her card.

Gerald Deutsch
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby Gerald Deutsch » December 14th, 2017, 10:02 pm

Where would Chapter II go in the reformatted scheme of things?


In another book.

performer
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby performer » December 14th, 2017, 11:09 pm

Gerald Deutsch wrote:I suspect the tricks in the Royal Road that fool magicians must be the boring ones that I rejected.

Here’s two you wouldn't reject: (From the Perverse Magic thread):

Perverse Card’s Across - First Versions Spectator - Participant Seated

Effect

1 “Would you cut off about 1/3 of the deck,” the magician says to the spectator.

2 “Good. Now count the cards like this,” The magician picks up the remaining portion of the deck and drops three cards singly, one at a time counting, “one, tow, three,” The spectator does.

3 “Good Now hold the packet like this,” The magician demonstrates by putting his right hand crosswise over his left hand and the spectator does likewise.

4 “Now look,” says the magician as he picks up the remainder of the deck and holds it in his left and as he riffles he edge with his left thumb, he gestures with that hand and the cards towards the spectator’s hands. He does this 3 times, each time counting one more card than the spectator had.

For example, if the spectator had originally counted 13, the magician says each time he riffles and gestures, “14, 15, 16.”

5 “Count the cards again,” says the magician and the spectator finds she has three more than she did before.

6 “I don’t really understand how that works but I think it has something to do with the way you were holding your hands. Pick up the cards and I’ll show you.” She does.

“You see? You have a little space between your fingers. “17, 18, 19.” The magician again riffles his packet and gestures three times.

He shrugs, not really understanding. “Go on. Count them again.”

She has three more – in this case 19 – and neither she, nor the magician understands at all.

Background

Like so much good card magic, “Three Cards Across” appears in “The Royal Road
To Card Magic.”

It was my friend Peter Marshall who suggested the “repeat”.

I decided to eliminate the force of a 3 to determine how many cards will pass. I
thought it slowed down the effect. I just do three.

And finally, as Perverse Magic, I meekly explain that I don’t know how it works.
The sixth category of Perverse Magic – see this thread above October 2011.





Now You See It

Out of This World requires a set up and I like to do the set up in the course of a previous trick and the trick I use is based on “Now You See It” from “The Royal Road to Card Magic” with some variations which I’ll describe now:

1 A card is selected and shuffled back in the deck and the spectator is given the deck to shuffle.

2 The performer says he needs four chances to find the card and he pulls out four cards.

3 He shows the four cards and none is the selected card.

4 The performer tells the spectator to touch one of the four cards and when she does – it’s her card.


I did not reject those tricks. In fact they are signature tricks of mine. However, I have not yet read your variations. I will. I do repeat the three cards across. Here I am doing it at 3.39
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WeR29uo8Aso

With regard to Now You See It I have been doing it for decades. Oddly enough I first read it in Expert Card Technique rather than the Royal Road. It was my favourite trick at one time. However, I do not use it to set up Out Of This World. I have the greatest way of setting up the deck that has ever been invented. I TELL them I am setting up the deck and I do it right in front of them! ! It is the George Blake method. Worth seeking out.

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chetday
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby chetday » December 15th, 2017, 12:14 pm

Gerald, I learn a lot from your Perverse Magic Thread. Thank you.

Mark, I also learn a lot from your posts and get more chuckles from your sense of humor than I do from watching old episodes of The Little Rascals. Thank you.

I treasure The Royal Road and return to it often. As the greatest cardman in my little neck of rural North Carolina (I'm also the only cardman in my little neck of North Carolina), my favorite from the book is A Poker Player's Picnic.

I only do the trick when I can borrow someone's deck of cards and when I'm in the company of at least two people and preferably three or four or more so everyone can get involved.

I run through the pack while babbling about how some packs are missing important cards... or to make sure all 52 cards are in the deck... or whatever seems right at the moment with this particular group of people... and steal the four aces or the four queens.

I then have the deck shuffled by at least one person, point to another and have that person cut the deck a few times, and then ask the two of them to decide who will help me with the next step. Interestingly enough, in all the years I've been doing this trick, no one has ever noticed that the deck they're shuffling is missing four cards.

While they're deciding on who'll help next, I casually place the four palmed cards back on top of the deck as I move the pack to the by now chosen helper and then proceed from there as described in the book, though I treat the whole routine as a "I wonder what would happen if you do this... and then you do this... and then this..." and so on to the conclusion.

In other words, I sit back and let them make the magic happen and pretend (not a lie, my God no, I would never lie) to be as surprised as they are when they turn over the top card in each packet.

Oh, what fun!

Mark, keep plugging on your annotations. I've already started to sneak money from my old lady's sugar bowl so I can buy one of the first copies.

performer
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby performer » December 15th, 2017, 12:34 pm

I LOVE Poker Player's Picnic! I wish it hadn't been exposed so much on the internet and in beginner's books and teaching kids magic which they shouldn't be allowed to learn. However, it gets a fantastic reaction if done properly. I know there are many other variations which are supposedly less convuluted but they all have the disadvantage that sooner or later the magician has to touch the deck. The advantage of the standard Royal Road method is that the performer goes nowhere near the deck.

I performed this trick before royalty you know. The Queen's husband actually. I showed Prince Phillip this trick at the Brady Boys Club and I am glad to say he followed instructions properly. I must say that he was very privileged to meet me. However, I was most irritated that I wasn't invited to Buckingham Palace over the matter. The least I would have expected was to be granted a knighthood but for some odd reason beyond my comprehension it didn't happen.

Gerald Deutsch
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby Gerald Deutsch » December 15th, 2017, 5:51 pm

Poker Players Picnic

I’ve always liked Poker Players Picnic from The Royal Road To Card Magic but I’ve always felt that the repetition makes it so that the spectator may be able to reconstruct the effect of ‘three to the bottom and one to each pile’.” But this can be remedied.

I posted these thoughts on the Perverse Magic thread on July 1, 2007 together with a Perverse Magic presentation part of which is as follows:

Effect

1 You and your wife are invited to a friend’s house and there are others there too.

“Show my friends a trick,” says your friend as he hands you a deck of cards. You don’t think it’s an appropriate time or place to perform so you decide to do one trick and by doing a “Perverse Magic” effect you (i) will entertain and amuse and (ii) have an excuse not to do more than one effect.

2 You run through the deck and remove the 4 aces and carefully and cleanly bury them into the deck. You give the deck a shuffle and hand the deck to one of the women there.

“See, the aces are lost in the deck and I’m going to give you the magic power to find the aces. Cut the deck into four piles. Good.”

Now you have the woman:

3 Pick up the first pile and shuffle it and then deal three cards to the bottom and one to each of the other piles.

4 Pick up the second pile and bury the top three cards in the center.

5 Pick up the third pile deal three cards to the bottom and one to each pile.

6 Finally pick up the last pile, deal one to the bottom, bury the next card and deal one to each of the other three piles.

7 “Great, you say, “Now look, I gave you the power to find all the aces.” But when you turn over the top card of each pile they are not aces but – fives! “Oh gosh – I did something wrong.”

Background

Poker Players Picnic is the second trick in “The Royal Road To Card Magic” and is
very popular with magicians. I have always felt that the spectator can easily
reconstruct the effect of ‘three to the bottom and one to each pile”. And by varying the dealing from each pile you will lead spectators away from being able to easily reconstruct what was done.

Brad Henderson
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby Brad Henderson » December 15th, 2017, 8:56 pm

poker players picnic is belchous aces and was first published in the dragon magazine.

i have a routine (two actually) for this in a set of notes. I use the reputation to make it seem more impossible, using a false dealing theme.

performer
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby performer » December 15th, 2017, 11:44 pm

Poker Player's Picnic has been in my repertoire for nearly 60 years. I must have performed it thousands of times. It is one of my favourite tricks. Not even ONCE has anyone ever"reconstructed" the method. On rare occasions some of the secrets to my other tricks have been detected but not a single time has anyone caught on to this trick. Most "improvements" are completely unnecessary. Moreover they make things worse because they convolute the effect. Besides, they haven't got time to reconstruct anything because you follow up with another trick anyway.

Sometimes magicians think too much.

MagicbyAlfred
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby MagicbyAlfred » December 16th, 2017, 12:10 am

First, let me say that I do not have even the shadow of a doubt that the Poker Player's Picnic, in its original form, has worked like a charm for Performer in the 60 some years in which he has been performing it and that no one has ever questioned the procedure. Still in all, there are times when there are different strokes for different blokes, and I have a way of doing the routine that works very well for me, though susceptible to the criticism that I may be convoluting it. When I say "works very well," I am using spectator reaction as my barometer.

I personally never felt comfortable or natural instructing the spectator to deal three cards to the bottom of each packet. I mean, why three cards? And why three each time? Just seemed too pat. What I have found that works quite well (for me) is to get the aces to the top, but a trey to the bottom before beginning. After a riffle shuffle and false cut maintaining top and bottom stock, the trey is forced using the cross-cut force, and the trey is tabled face up, with the line that, "Three must be your lucky number, so we will use it for this demonstration." The deck is reassembled after the force returning the aces to the top, and the aces are then palmed off while pattering about how we are going to do an experiment to find out just how lucky the spectator really is.

The deck is then handed to spectator to shuffle and cut. I don't normally have spectators shuffle the cards, but for this trick I believe that added length is more than justified by added strength. The deck is then taken back momentarily, and the aces replaced under cover of looking at the spectator and asking whether he/she is "feeling lucky tonight?" The deck is given a quick riffle to take any possible tell-tale bend out of the aces, then handed to the spectator with the reminder that they shuffled the deck, so they couldn't possibly know the order of the cards or where any particular cards are in the deck. It is easy to invariably obtain agreement to this. After the spectator has cut into four piles, the trick proceeds as written, except that when telling the spectator to deal three to the bottom and then to deal one card on each pile (which also totals three cards), you patter as they do so that you are having them do it that way because they originally cut to a three (pointing to the tabled face-up trey), which, as you explained earlier, must be their lucky number. Before the denouement, you can also obtain agreement that you never touched the cards - that the spectator did all the shuffling, cutting, and dealing themself. They invariably forget that brief moment that the deck was taken back from them after they shuffled.

Since doing the trick this way for the past couple of years, the reactions have doubled or tripled (and they were quite good before) and people marvel over the trick long thereafter.

performer
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Re: The Royal Road, all it's cracked up to be?

Postby performer » December 16th, 2017, 12:31 am

Here are part of my annotations to the trick:

This trick is so good in fact that I have performed it for royalty! When I was 16 years old I belonged to a youth club and one day, Prince Phillip the Duke of Edinburgh and husband of Her Majesty the Queen, came to visit. I was asked to show a trick to his Royal Highness and this is the one I chose! He seemed to appreciate it. The moral of the tale is that if this trick is good enough to be shown to royalty it should be good enough for you to add it to your repertoire and show it to your friends and family!
Here is another way of doing the trick. You may prefer this variation or perhaps use it for a repeat performance on another occasion. In the preface of this book it quite rightly explains that you should never repeat a trick, although I have found a few exceptions to this rule in very rare cases. However, sometimes you can get away with it providing the trick is performed on a later occasion when memory of the spectators have dimmed a trifle. And of course as the preface mentions you can duplicate the effect by other means. I think this variation may well fit in the category of “other means”!
It is very similar to the procedure already described. However, there is a small difference in preparation and procedure. First the preparation; secretly place the four aces atop the back just as before but this time put any other card above them. You are now ready to perform. And now the procedure. Instead of placing three cards underneath you have an interesting variation. On the first pile you instruct the spectator to remove ONE card only and place it on the bottom of the packet. He continues as in the first method described above by dealing one card onto each of the other piles in turn.
Now you get him to pick up the second packet and transfer TWO underneath and deal one on to each pile. Repeat this procedure with the third pile but this time he puts THREE underneath and just as before deals one on to each pile. This will result in four indifferent cards atop the aces. For the last pile (the ace pile) you tell him to place FOUR cards underneath and deal one onto each pile. This will result in the four aces coming out on top of each pile just as in the previous version described in the text. Finish just as before by getting the spectator to turn over the top card of each packet revealing the four aces!
There are more complicated variations using sleight of hand and have the advantage that you don’t have to ask the spectator to go through the procedure of putting three cards on the bottom and dealing one card on to each pile. All the spectator has to do is cut the deck into four piles and the ace is revealed on top of each packet!
Now this may seem a much more direct procedure and of course it is. However, there are some flaws which should be taken into consideration. First of course, is that there is sleight of hand involved and that makes the trick harder to do! However, more importantly the main disadvantage is that in the method described above the cards are not handled by the magician and this is a very strong point indeed and in fact makes the trick seem impossible.
All the other variations do require the performer to touch the cards so despite the seeming directness you do lose the impact of the no-hands approach.


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