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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » If right you win, if wrong you lose... » » 3 shell game Barcelona (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Andy Charlton
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Palma Nova Mallorca Spain
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Hiya.

A few months ago we were in Barcelona Spain. There they have a wide street with a pedestrian section called the Ramblas. I knew shell and card men operated there, so we wandered along to see if we could spot them. Didn't have long to wait. There was an empty piece of pavement just in front of us, suddenly, seriously within 10 seconds, there was a game in full swing. Laughing playing betting, winning and losing. I know a bit about street cons, but the speed shocked and impressed me. From nothing to full on gaming in a few seconds. This was the 3 shell game, with matchbox insides and a wadded up ball of paper. With the camera hanging by my side I tried to get a photo. The operator looked up and was immediately in my face. "You wanna play." When I declined he waved a €20.00 note in my face, "First time you play with my money," I obviously declined again. He stepped back to his spot, (a piece of mat on the floor,) and two of the players were suddenly between me and him. No chance to watch, no chance to take pictures.

I casually wandered away, then back round the other side, More shuffling of feet and the guys were in front of me again.

I have uploaded a photo, It's not very good, but I'm sure you'll understand why.


On the same day, we saw a Guy, stood out to me because of a yellow fleece and a striking facial resemblance to Andre Agussi. He was standing near us with a gypsy looking woman. He said something to her and she walked away past us up the street. A few seconds later a touristy looking guy left a cigarette Kiosk with his son sitting on his shoulders. Yellow fleece Man made a sort of half whistle, half Hiss sound, looking past us I guess at the gypsy woman. He then did a "Look" gesture by pulling down his bottom eyelid with his finger, then patted his right front trouser pocket. This was pretty obviously a lookout for a pickpocket, and the tourist, holding his son couldn't defend his pockets or the wallet, that he would have been seen replacing in his front right pocket after his purchase at the kiosk.

I thought about warning the guy, but, call me a coward if you like, The blood of my ancestors runs in my veins, and I'd quite like to keep it there.

Cheers

Andy

Click here to view attached image.
"Keep that smile on your face, that excitement in your eyes." - Don Driver

Check out www.andyandjeansbigadventure.com
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Neil
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There are some real criminal scumbags in Barcelona. You really have to watch your back.

I had a bad, bad run-in with some gypsy guy which neither of us will be forgetting in a hurry...
rnaviaux
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Andy - You not only called yourself a coward but a thief as well. I guess "know thyself" is also a motto in your bloodline.

Randy
Mario Morris
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Mario Morris
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Being half Spanish I spent a lot of my youth in Spain. I have been able to watch these guys operate right up close they never felt threatened by my presence being a child. My Mother in her Spanish accent use to warn me that they will steal me and sell me off as a slave in Morocco if I got to close. Smile

The Spaniards are up to scratch on this con and you wont see them ever part with there hard earned cash. Tourists are the target. You will find that their children show polishing service is a show in its self while there women are selling garments and jewelry. The Gypsies have worked this game for generations and have it rapped up to a fine art as you could imagine.

The three card Monte is rarely performed on the streets in Spain, the three shell game is what they operate. Just a bit of advice stay clear or you may end up in chains of slavery. Watch from a distance, It won’t be long before they strip a sucker and disappear down the side streets just before the Police turn up.

Mario

PS You took a very risky but rare photo, you have the operaters face in veiw and one of the clang members they would not thank you for that.
Andy Charlton
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Palma Nova Mallorca Spain
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Quote:
On 2005-09-13 12:30, rnaviaux wrote:
Andy - You not only called yourself a coward but a thief as well. I guess "know thyself" is also a motto in your bloodline.

Randy


Don't remember calling myself a thief.

Andy
"Keep that smile on your face, that excitement in your eyes." - Don Driver

Check out www.andyandjeansbigadventure.com
or
www.andysmagic.com
mota
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Most shell game/monte gangs have knives and guns.

It isn't cowardice...it is street smart.
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