Electro Fun Update 20 – Supplement 2

Routine For George Blake’s Silver Sceptre – Keith Pickles

Several years ago, whilst wondering how I could come up with a good story to tell when using the Silver Sceptre one little boy told me that it looked like a car aerial. That chance remark, as happens so often when entertaining children, led me on to evolve the routine that I have now used with this excellent magical effect at hundreds of shows for children. Not only is the effect good, but the routine is one that can be used with just about any age group, from the play-group age, where the comic effects in the routine are most popular, to the 8/9 years olds, who are trying to work out how its done.
The basic storyline is that the Silver Sceptre is a car aerial which has a mind of its own. I tell the story that follows.
The other day I went to my car and found that some one had broken my car aerial. I was very upset because I like to listen to the radio when I am driving the car, and without the aerial, I can’t listen to the radio. So I thought I know what I’ll do, I’ll go to the shop that sells these car aerials and buy a new one. So I went to the shop, and the man in the shop said “I know what you need sir, a brand new automatic car aerial”. At this point, I take out the Silver Sceptre still in its cover.
I said, “How do you mean automatic car aerial?” The man in the shop said “All you need to do is to clean the aerial with a cloth and the aerial goes up on its own.” Here I take the aerial out of the cover and proceed to clean it with a large cloth, making the aerial rise as per the instructions.
I said, “But do you mean to say every time I want the aerial to rise I have to get out of my car and give it a clean with a cloth?” At this point I repeat the rising of the aerial.”
“Oh no” said the man, “I only clean it now because it gets very dirty when its been in the shop. Once you have fitted it to your car it will work every time.” Again, the aerial is made to rise.
“Look” said the man, “I’ll show you how it works. Let’s pretend that this bag is the body of the car.” The cover for the Silver sceptre is shown at this point and the sceptre inserted as per the instructions. “All you have to do is to press the button and the aerial will rise on its own.” At this point I press my ear and make the aerial rise again. “So I bought this aerial and fitted it to my car, and for a while it worked fine. Every time I pressed the button, the aerial went up.” I repeat the pressing of my ear and making the aerial rise.
“But I hadn’t had it very long before it started going wrong. It started going up at all sorts of funny times when I wasn’t expecting it.” Whilst saying this last bit I have the aerial go up into my nose and after pushing it down and starting the last sentence again, into my ear, “In fact every time I got into the car and turned the steering wheel, the aerial went up”.
Make the aerial go up. “Every time I pulled on the handbrake, the aerial went up. (And up it goes again.) Every time I put my foot on the accelerator, the aerial went up.” (And again it goes up. As I run through this part the action speeds up, and my voice rises in exasperation.)
“But do you know what was worst of all? (I don’t wait for an answer at this point as it would spoil the excitement which is building up.) Every time I close the car door (I mime the action of closing the car door.) the aerial goes …” (And I don’t need to finish the sentence as at this point. I allow the Silver Sceptre to jump right into the air completely out of the cover. I manage to catch it before it hits the ground or any children who are close to me.)
I finish by putting the Silver Sceptre back into the cover and saying, “And so I’ll have to take this aerial back and get one that works properly.”

Indra’s Restoring selection – Indranil Ray

Two sets of pictures of five different animals are needed. Paste five different animal pictures on five blank visiting cards and put the name of each animal underneath the pictures.  Put some sort of secret marks on the back of each card to mark them 1 through 5, so that you can identify each animal without seeing the picture. This is the first set.
Cut the other set of five pictures in halves through the middle of the animals and paste each piece on ten double blank visiting cards. Now take two cards bearing two halves of an animal and write the name in two parts as follows: If the picture is of a LION, write ‘LI’ on the card below the picture bearing front or head half of the Lion and ‘ON’ below rear half on the card. Do the same with all the other cards.
Memorise the following chart, for transfer of cards : –
Number – Move
1. – Move one card from top to face (bottom) of the pack.
2. – Move two cards from face (bottom) to top of the pack.
3. – Leave the stack (pack) of cards as it is.
4. – Move two cards from top to face (bottom) of the pack.
5. – Move one card from face (bottom) to top.
Set Up: Stack the cards of second set with two halves of each animal in pairs.  The pair bearing the code number ‘one’ should be the first pair of the face down stack, followed by the pair with serial no.2 and so on. Put this stack of cards inside a wallet with the First set of Five cards over it.
Presentation:  Remove the cards from the wallet, separate the first set from the rest of the cards, and place the half animal set on the table. Fan the cards in hand and show the complete animal set.
Turning the cards face down, mix them and request a spectator to pick any card but not to see the face. However, you note the secret code number on the back of the selected animal card. Leaving the other cards in hand aside, you now take the second set of cards lying on the table. Lifting the cards in pairs, you show that each animal is cut into halves.  Count the cards to show that there are ten pieces of five animals. Then casually shift the required number of cards according to the code number of selected animal card. Suppose, the number on the selected card is 4, you shift two cards from top to bottom of the stack of cards.Do this very casually, and do not draw their attention by making it a big move. Next, take the top five cards in right hand from the rest in left without disturbing the order of both groups. Place the two piles side by side on the table.
State that you will spell the sentence “JOIN ANIMALS BY MAGIC” and transfer a card for each letter from top to bottom of either pile, as indicated by the spectator. You will then discard the top cards of each pile as a pair after completion of the spelling of each word. This is done until the spelling of the sentence is complete.
Finally, the spectator is requested to show his selected animal by turning over his original selected card. You now turn the cards discarded in pairs to show that only one pair has the matching halves, and it matches the spectator’s selected animal.
Ed. Note. The effect and can be immediately repeated by openly arranging the cut animals in pairs. Since the other five animal cards’ backs are marked these does not require any set up rather it is wise to mix them well at the outset.

Powerful Name – Arun Bonerjee

Please remember that the number 12 is the ‘key’ number in this effect.
Presentation: Before starting just decide a person who will be the subject of this trick. However, you must select someone whose name has minimum ‘12’ letters. Add ‘Mr’, ‘Miss’ or ‘Mrs’ where applicable if the name has less than 12 letters. You can of course use any name with more letters for this effect.
Suppose you decide to use the name of your friend SUJIT MUKHERJEE, present on the occasion, whose name you found spells with ‘14’ letters, and is suitable for the trick. You mentally subtract the ‘Key’ number 12 from 14 (the number of letters in your selected name), getting ‘2’, This you mentally note.
As you start the performance, hand over a deck of playing cards to your friend SUJIT MUKHERJEE, and ask him to take out any ‘9’ cards. Place rest of the deck aside.
Ask him to mix the packet well, and hold it face down in his hand. Next, ask SUJIT to note any one of the cards in his hand and place it on top.
Stating you will mix the cards well, rapidly carry out an ‘Under-Down’ shuffle (transfer one card  from top of packet to the bottom, then drop the next card on the table, and so on, until you are left with a single card in your hand.)
Turn it face up asking SUJIT whether this is by any luck his selected card. Obviously he says ‘No!’
Turn card face down, pick up tabled packet with free hand, turn it face up asking your friend whether the face card is his selected card. Again, he says ‘No!’
Turn packet face down; add single card in your other hand to the face of the packet. Once more, turn top card of packet face up and ask your friend whether the card is his selection? The reply is  again negative. Turn the face up card face down.
Fan the cards and casually mix them, except the fourth card from top, as it will be SUJIT’s card. While doing so smilingly tell him, as his card being lost in the packet, to locate it you have to simply look through the cards! Your friend agreeing to this, further comment instead of looking through the cards you will use the magic powers of his name!
Remember the number ‘2’, (number of letters in name greater than 12) and casually shift 2 cards together from bottom to top of packet. Then hand over packet face down to your friend.
Finally, audibly and slowly spell your friend’s name, S – U – J – I – T  M – U – K – H – E – R – J – E – E, and lead him through the process of shifting a card for each letter from top to bottom of packet. When you finish, take top card of packet in your hand and ask your friend to name his selected card.
Once he obliges you turn the card in your hand face up and there comes the surprise – you have correctly located his selected card by spelling his name!
Smile, toss the card on the table, and conclude by commenting that it proves he does posses a very powerful name, which he should use sparingly, otherwise it may lose it’s effectiveness.
NOTE: If the spectator’s name spells with just 12 letters, then you don’t have to shift any card from bottom to top of packet.

The trick is based upon a mathematical principle I developed inspired by Phil Goldstein’s excellent item DUE SOUTH in Abra No.2874.

 Silk thru Glass, My Way – Soumya Deb.

First Effect: The magician takes a glass and empties it out by pouring some liquid from it into  another glass. Then he keeps a bright coloured silk in to the glass. A little magic and he pull down the silk through the bottom of the glass. Finis.
Preparation: Two similar looking opaque glasses are needed. Cut a rectangular slot 2.5” x 1.5”  about half inch above the bottom at one side of one glass, as shown in Fig.1. with a fine hacksaw (use fine blade).  Now nest the other glass into this glass and let it go as far as it goes in then give a little downward push so that this becomes a tight fit . Then cut off the extended portion again with the hacksaw (Fig. 2). Finally push in a silk handkerchief through the slot into the secret chamber. With a duplicate silk handkerchief and some liquid in the glass, you are ready to go.

Performance: Lift the glass from the table or from a tray held by your assistant, with the left thumb covering the slot and other fingers on the other side of the glass and pour out the liquid into another glass held in your right hand. This part has in fact no role in the actual effect but this (and the way you hold the glass) indirectly proves the glass is an ordinary one.
Now take the duplicate handkerchief, wipe the glass with it, and leave it inside the glass.Then a little magic and you pull the hanky out through the bottom of the glass!?  Well, at least it looks like the same from the front (see Fig.3) to the audience. In reality, you slide the thumb a little up and the right fingers holding a corner of the silk pulls it down through the slot  and the other fingers screen this move from their view. Finish.

Second Effect:  The magician takes a glass and removes a Red silk from it. Next he takes another clear tumbler containing yellow liquid and pours the same into the first glass. Taking the red silk, he inserts the same into the glass now containing the yellow liquid. A little magic and he pull a Yellow silk through the bottom of the glass. Finally, when he pours the liquid back to the transparent tumbler it is seen that the colour has changed to Red.
The special glass used in the First effect needs a modification.  A divider has to be fixed in the middle to make two compartments and that should be watertight. (see Fig.4)
A yellow silk is secreted in the load chamber, some red food colour powder is kept in one compartment of the glass, and a red silk goes into the other compartment. Finally a clear tumbler filled with yellow liquid (use food colour or water soluble poster colour) completes the preparation.
Performance: Hold the prepared glass with your right hand covering the slot with your left thumb. The right fingers remove the red silk from the glass, pretend to wipe the glass casually after displaying the silk and put it back into the glass. This indirectly conveys the idea that the glass is empty.
Now the yellow coloured liquid is poured into the prepared compartment and the food colour powder changes the colour of the liquid. Since the glass is an opaque one, this change is undetectable. A little hocus-pocus and pull the Yellow silk from the hidden place exactly the same way as you did in the First Effect. Let the surprise register in their mind then pour the liquid back to show the change of colour as an encore and take your well deserved bow.