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Richard Webster
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For the last couple of years I've been doing a variation of the Birthday Card Diary effect. In my version, the
card plays a minor, but vital, part in the effect. I was too lazy to learn the Aronson stack, so adapted a stack I already knew - Lewis Jones' excellent Memory Deck. This works wonderfully well when the outcome of the math is an even number. However, for odd numbers I had to go back one suit and then add 6 to the card number. This was necessary to prevent the same card from appearing too frequently. The problem has been that I may perform it four times in one day, and then go weeks without performing it. It's in my pocket, so I'm ready to go at any moment, with or without a deck of cards, but as I'm not doing it regularly, there's often an awkward pause while I frantically work out what the card is. You'd think the even and odd numbers would work out approximately 50:50 after a while, but for some reason I seem to get far more than my share of odd numbers. A couple of weeks ago, I decided to bite the bullet and learn the Aronson stack. While reading "A Stack to Remember" I suddenly remembered Doug Dyment had written up a stacked deck. I found his "QuickStack" in "Mindsights." I was a bit dubious about his claim that it would take me only 30 minutes to learn it, but that proved to be the case. It's a bit silly to have an effect in which half the outcomes are exceptions to the rule, but from now on this effect will be extremely easy to do. I've posted this as I totally overlooked Doug's stack when it was first published. Do many of you use it?
Steven Keyl
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I actually memorized Dyment's Quickstack. It's the only stack I use anymore. Like you I started off being able to work out any card from any number and vice versa but I also wanted to start doing effects that required more mastery of the stack. So I started memorizing it as one would with the Aronson or Tamariz stacks. I highly recommend it to anyone looking to get into MD stuff.
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