The performer brings out a small object concealed in his hand. This is given to a participant to hold in his or her left hand, without the person viewing it. The performer comments, "Although you can't see it, you can feel that it's a plastic chip, perhaps for some sort of game like Poker. Well, playing cards are often used for game-playing, and also for fortunetelling. And that chip has to do with both."
The performer then brings out a packet of cards, and continues, "These are not playing cards. However, as you'll see, they have a curious relationship to both gaming and future-casting. Remember the game of 'shooting fingers'?" he asks. "You know: Someone calls, 'Ready, set, go,' and the players extend some fingers, which eventually determines the outcome of the game, usually by whether the total is odd or even. In this case, you'll shoot fingers solo, using your right hand. I'll say, 'Ready, set, go!' and you put out some fingers. Then, we'll look at these cards, to find out what it all means."
Upon the performer's exclamation, the player puts out some fingers. (For example, we'll say three.) "Okay," says the performer. "You could've put out all five fingers, or four, or two, or one, or none. You opted to 'shoot' three. As it happens, each of those possibilities relates to a color, which in turn indicates what emotional aspect governs your current state of mind."
The performer turns over the packet, showing that the first card has on its face a drawing of a red hand with all fingers extended. "Red means passion. If you'd held out all five fingers, it would indicate that your life is ruled by passion. As you didn't, that's not your primary characteristic."
That card is dealt aside. The next shows a yellow hand with four fingers extended. "Yellow is a cautionary hue. If you'd shown four fingers, it would mean that you tend to proceed carefully, never rushing into any situation. But that's not your guiding aspect at this time."
That card is tabled. The next shows a green hand with three fingers outstretched. "Ah," says the performer, "you did display three, so I'll wait before explaining its significance."
That card is set apart from the others. The next card shows a purple hand with two fingers raised. "Violet represents elegance. Such would be your definitive quality, had you shown two fingers. As you didn't, well, elegance is clearly not your most important trait."
That card is tabled. The next shows an orange hand, one finger extended. "This gesture seems rather accusatory, and indeed the meaning of orange is anger and confrontation. Lucky for me, you don't have that attitude today."
That card is dealt aside. The final card shows a black hand, curled into a fist. "Not surprisingly, no fingers shown indicates a predilection for secrecy; literally, nothing is revealed."
He turns his attention to the card with the spectator's chosen number -- the green hand with three fingers raised -- and explains, "The color green has a straightforward meaning. It indicates envy. At this moment, you're about to feel an overpowering sense of that, as you envy my ability to have known ahead of time to put a green chip in your hand!"
The participant opens his or her fist, and looks at the plastic chip for the first time. Indeed, it is green, for a perplexing resolution.
You are provided with a set of six specially printed cards, plus five differently colored chips corresponding to the card colors, and very detailed instructions on how to present this mind-blower! People will come back to see you perform this over and over again!
I was pleasantly surprised once I received this. There is no force. Although there is a very small subtlety involved in directing the choice, it is virtually unable to fail. From other reviews I knew there was going to be a slight, and I had read several complaints about it being too complicated. There is a sleight involved, but both are slights learned very early on in any card book I have ever read. My complaint would be the quality of cards. They do not have the same finish on them as most USPCC cards have. They are a little stiff and sticky. This is sure to wear out as the cards are practiced with though. The instructions are easy to understand and include quite a bit of information that someone should be able to carry forward into other effects. Even though I would never attempt to perform as Max Maven's character, he is exceptionally entertaining. His is writing is clear and verbose. He has a real talent for sharing his knowledge. This is my first packet trick written by Phil Goldstein (Max Maven) and I am not disappointed. I highly recommend this product to anyone. - Paul T