a n d r e w m a y n e p r e s e n t s

THE MAN WITH THE

X-RAY SPECS
EFFECT: The magician asks an audience member to loan him a reasonably new $1 bill. The magician has the audience member wrap the bill in a piece of foil then place it into an envelope. The envelope is signed and then given to a second spectator. This spectator is asked to stand up and hold the envelope high above their head. The magician puts on his patented X-RAY spectacles and proceeds to stare at the envelope. He writes something down on a pad of paper. Next he reveals to the audience that he was able to see into the envelope, past the foil and read the numbers on the bill. He is able to offer with 79% certainty that it is indeed a $1 bill. As an afterthought he reveals the serial number on the bill (revealed in a funny way). METHOD: Using a version of the double-lift with envelopes, the spectator’s original bill is switched out for a second bill that the magician knows the serial number for. MATERIALS: To perform this effect you’ll need the following items in addition to the bill you borrow from an audience member: • A relatively new and clean $1 bill • 6 coin envelopes • Magic marker • 2 large pieces of cardboard to write on • 2 pieces of foil • One pair of X-Ray specs (or reasonable facsimile) PREPARATION: 1. Using the magic marker, write the serial number of the bill on one of the large pieces of cardboard – writing the digits in reverse order. If the serial number is 5695495, you’d write 5945965 (you’ll see why in a moment). 2. Cut two pieces of foil into rectangles 5 ½ inches by 3 inches and fold them in half into folders. 3. Fold the bill in half with the back on the outside and place it into a foil folder.

4. Seal the bill and folder into an envelope. 5. Place the envelope second from the top of your envelope stack (with the top being the flap side). 6. Place the remaining foil sleeve on top of the stack and wrap a rubber band around the packet. 7. Place these in your pocket with the Magic Marker. 8. Place the blank piece of cardboard on top of the piece with the reversed serial number. 9. Put your X-Ray specs into your pocket and find an audience.

FOLDED BILL

ENVELOPE STACK

PERFORMANCE: Begin by asking someone on the left side of the audience if they would lend you a $1 bill that isn’t too worn. Ask them to pull it out of their wallet or purse and to fold it in half so that George is on the inside. Tell them not to stare too much at their hands so you won’t pick up any psychic vibes. Hand them the piece of foil and ask them to slide the bill into the folder. While they do this, bring out the stack of envelopes. As them to hold the folder to the light to see if they can see through it. While they do this, with the stack of envelopes face up in your left hand, get a pinky break under the second envelope (the one with your bill).

Open the flap to the top envelope and ask the spectator to slide the folder into the envelope. Look at the flap for a moment then bring the stack of envelopes slowly up to your mouth and lick the gum on the flap. Press the flap shut with your right hand. Reach into your pocket and pull out the marker. Hand it to the spectator. Bring your right hand back to the stack of envelopes and flip over the top two envelopes (a double-lift). Ask the spectator to write their initials on the back of the envelope (actually your prepared envelope).

Have them recap the marker and hand it back to you. Place the marker in your pocket then take the signed envelope off the top of the packet – dropping your left hand to your side. Hold the envelope high above your head. Ask the spectator to sit down. Walk over to the right side of the audience. Place the packet of envelopes in your pocket. Still holding the envelope high above your head, ask another member of the audience to stand up. Have them take the envelope and hold it between their hands. Return to the stage (or center of living room, middle of prison yard, etc.) Somewhat sarcastically explain that seeing the bill would be real easy if you were going to use ESP, but everybody knows how to do that. That’s the reason why you handed the bill to someone you’re sure never had a chance to look at it (this is an intentionally nonsensical explanation). Pull out your X-Ray specs and put them on. Explain that you’re going to use them to see inside of the envelope. With the glasses on it’s the perfect time to leer at your audience and make suggestive remarks about being able to see through clothing – but you won’t because you’re better than that. Pick up the two pieces of cardboard. Casually show the front piece as you pick them up. Uncap the marker and prepare to write on the cardboard. Stare in the direction of the spectator holding the envelope. Write “$1” on the cardboard.

Tell the audience that you’ve looked into the envelope and can tell them with 79% accuracy that bill is a one dollar bill. Turn the cardboard around and show them that’s what you wrote. Look a little bit stunned, when they don’t react with thunderous applause. Turn the cardboard back towards you. Acting a little upset, cast aside the top piece. Return your gaze back towards the envelope. Lift the glasses and squint a little. Pretend you’re really trying to see the bill in the envelope. Pretend to write some numbers on the cardboard (this is the piece with numbers already written on it). Finish faking writing and put the cap back on the pen. Tell the audience that you’re 22% sure you were able to look inside the envelope. Ask the person holding the envelope to tear it

open and pull out the bill. Ask them to look at the serial number on the bill. Turn your “prediction” around. Call out the first three numbers and ask if those are the first three numbers of the serial number. The answer will be “no” (because you wrote the serial number in reverse). Look a little bit surprised. Ask the spectator to call out the first three numbers. Take a moment to try to fake a connection between the numbers. Example: If they say they’re 352 and your first three are 719, tell the audience that both of those numbers are prime numbers in non-Euclidian Bavarian monkey algebra. When the audience doesn’t buy that excuse pause for a moment like you’re deep in thought. Ask the spectator if they were holding the envelope with their right hand on top or their left hand. No matter their answer, say, “Of course! You had it upside down. It’s all your fault!” Look to the audience for support. After receiving none, look back at what you wrote. Ask the spectator to slowly call out the serial number in reverse order. Point to each number in order on the cardboard as they call them out. Hopefully they’ll applaud at this point.

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COPYRIGHT 2004 Andrew Mayne

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