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

sethb
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I found this funny small story in the February, 1912 issue of Ellis Stanyon's "Magic" magazine, and thought all of you sharpers out there would enjoy it:

"Traveling up North with some friends, an occupant of the car invited me to have a game. I agreed. He thereupon produced three thimbles and a pea, and having shuffled the objects more or less, asked me to guess under which thimble was the pea.

I found it the first time. He then asked me to cover a piece of money with a like amount, and if I found the pea the next time, the money would be mine. I was successful and took the stakes.

This happened a second time, somewhat to the dismay of our friend, who thereupon asked me to double the stakes. I did so, found the pea and took the money, whereupon, being unable to control himself any longer, he exclaimed "What in the name of thunder is the matter -- why, I've got the pea in me hand!"

I replied, "That's very likely, but on occasions like these I always carry my own pea."


A word to the wise -- if you ever come upon a real three shell game, don't try this unless you weigh at least 100 pounds more than anyone else there! SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
Steve V
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I like it!
Steve V
Tyler
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That's great!!
Andy_Bell
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How many peas would you need to carry to be able to pull it off?
or can anyone come up with a workable method of lifting the pea after each find?
I was put on this earth to do a great many things..... I'm now so far behind that I don't think I'm ever going to die!
sethb
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Andy, you make a good point -- this story may be apocryphal after all!

But it's still a good story. SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
Andy_Bell
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You'r right, best not to pick holes and just enjoy the story for what it is.
Its the sort of tale that makes urban legends out of street hustlers and is of course therfore to be encouraged!
I was put on this earth to do a great many things..... I'm now so far behind that I don't think I'm ever going to die!
cheesewrestler
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Quote:
On 2006-08-03 07:37, Andy_Bell wrote:
How many peas would you need to carry to be able to pull it off?


Well, according to this story,
First time: hustler allows mark to find the pea, to show him how easy it is.
Second time: hustler allows mark to find the pea & win a small amount of money, to lure him on.
Third time: mark finds his own pea.
Fourth time: mark finds his own pea.

So the mark was carrying two peas of his own.

Not to spoil the story, but in reality the first time the mark "found" the pea in the wrong (from the hustler's point of view) place would be the last.

So if you wanted to try this in real life, you'd only need one pea.

And a bodyguard.
sethb
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Definitely a bodyguard!

In John Scarne's "New Complete Guide to Gambling," he tells the story of how one night in 1935, he secretly substituted a real roulette ball for the magnetized one he spotted at a dishonest 'electric' roulette table. After he had won a few hundred dollars, the casino's owner came over to see what was happening and why his gimmicked roulette wheel wasn't working.

Scarne held the gaffed ball up in the air and said, "Hey boss, how would you like to buy a magnetized roulette ball?" Of course, he was accompanied by James J. Braddock, who was then the world's heavyweight champion. SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
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