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Scott Guinn - Jellis

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					                                                Jellis
                                         by Scott Guinn


The Jardine Ellis Ring seems to be one of the most underused props in close up magic. This is a
shame, because it has potential to be a very powerful and entertaining piece of magic. My
routine, inspired by J.G. Thompson’s in Top Secrets of Magic, combines ring on string and ring
on stick sequences with a cups and balls style effect. Basically, this is a little close up “act” unto
itself!

Requirements and preparation: You’ll have to gather a few items and do a little prep work, but I
feel this routine merits it. Start by getting the following items.

    •   Two Jardine Ellis Rings. Johnson Products of Arcadia, California make the best I have
        seen. They have a nice weight and are extremely well machined.
    •   A toilet paper tube (without the paper!).
    •   A purse frame, such as is used for sponge ball routines.
    •   A long chopstick.
    •   An Eisenhower dollar-sized Chinese coin.
    •   A round shoelace, between three and four feet in length.
    •   Two balls, 1.5 inches in diameter. I use one rubber ball and one steel ball bearing due to
        my patter lines, but you could use two rubber or cork balls.

Cut the toilet paper tube down to three inches. Color the inside of the tube flat black with paint or
a permanent marker. Decorate the outside however you see fit. I wrapped mine with black
electrical tape, and put one strip of white tape around each end, such that it looks like a short,
stout magic wand.

Take the shell off both of the Ellis rings. Put one ring in your right front pants pocket. Put the other
ring away—it isn’t used in this routine. Place one shell on top of the other. In other words, you
have two shells nested. Put the coin on top of all and cover this stack with the tube. You will find
that by squeezing the bottom of the tube against the stack, you can lift the tube, secretly carrying
along the stack. Place the loaded tube in your case or right side coat pocket (where you can use
a deck of cards, silk or other item to keep it in an upright position).

Place the shoelace in your left front pants pocket and the purse frame in your right front pants
pocket. The rubber ball goes in the right side coat pocket, next to the loaded tube, and the ball
bearing goes in the left side coat pocket. Finally, keep the chopstick in your inner breast coat
pocket.

You will need a close up pad or similar soft surface upon which to perform this routine.

Method and performance: “Magic is an art that is performed all over the world. I met a wonderful
Chinese magician once, by the name of Fu Ling. He used this as his magic wand.” Remove the
chopstick and set it on the table.

“He had heard that western magicians used thicker wands, black, with white tips, so he made
himself one. But, never having seen a western wand, he didn’t get it quite right.” Reach into your
right side pocket or your case for the loaded tube. Squeeze the bottom to hold the stack in place
and bring out the “wand.”

“When he visited America he saw that we do, indeed, have black wands with white tips, but their
size is much closer to his chopstick! He had a good laugh over that.” Pick up the chopstick with
your left hand and insert it into the bottom end of the tube, through the hole in the coin, and move
it up until it protrudes for several inches from the top of the tube. Tilt the stick so it touches the top
edge of the tube on the far side. (To the spectators, it will appear that the chopstick also touches
the bottom edge of the tube on the side nearest you, completely convincing them that the tube is
empty without your “proving” it to be so.) Withdraw the stick, handing it to Sally as you set the
tube on the table near the edge at the center of your performing area.

Reach into both pants pockets. Take the string in the left hand and bring it out while the right
hand takes the ring in curl palm and then grips the purse frame at the fingertips, coming out of the
pocket a second after the left hand does. Hand the string to Linus, asking him to verify its solidity.
Take the string back with your left hand as your right gives Linus the “purse.” Ask him to open it
and to make sure it is empty. This will be a source of interest and amusement to the rest of the
audience, and as Linus opens the purse, thread one of the string up through the curl palmed ring
until the tip of the string extends an inch or so past the top of the hand. Once threaded, allow the
ring to fall into right finger palm.

After Linus verifies that the “purse” is empty, take the other end of the string in your left hand and
pull the string taut as you say, “Did you really expect to find anything in that? For crying out loud,
the bag has been removed! Fu Ling didn’t want anyone to steal his money.” Place the left end of
the string alongside the right end. Take the purse frame back with your right hand, pinching the
clasps between thumb and forefinger and placing it into “production position” between the left
forefinger tip and the fork of the left thumb. Open the purse frame.

You will magically produce the ring on the center of the string using a move Dan Fleshman taught
me. Raise the right hand so that you can lower the dangling loop of the string into the purse
frame. Continue lowering the right hand until the right pinky touches the left index finger.
Maintaining a firm grip on the ends of the string let the ring drop from the right hand into left finger
palm. Immediately pull the string back up about three inches and drape the ends over the back of
the left hand. Gesture with your empty right hand toward sally, asking her to wave the stick over
your left hand. As she does, say, “Money wasn’t the only thing Fu Ling kept in his purse.” Grip the
ends of the string with your right hand and pull the string up until it clears the purse, revealing the
ring hanging on the center of the string. Close the purse and take it at the right fingertips. Take
the ends of the string in the left hand and return the purse frame to the right pants pocket. Take
the ends of the string back into the right hand.

“This was his good luck charm, given to him by his uncle, China’s premiere television producer.
He was known as the Aaron Spelling of China, most famous for his prime-time soap opera about
the ultra rich and powerful. Perhaps you’ve heard of it—the Ling ‘Dynasty?’”

During the groan that this stupid joke invariably produces, you perform the first half of Dan
Garrett’s “Faustus Ring.” With your left hand, grasp the left side of the string just above the ring,
pinning the string between your thumb and the base of the forefinger. Close this hand into a fist
around the ring and both sides of the string. The right hand releases the ends of the string. A
small loop forms above the ring. The ring is at the base of the ring finger. Keeping the back of the
left hand toward the audience, raise the hand to chest level. Bring the right hand, back facing the
spectators, up to the left, grasp both sides of the string and stroke downward. Bring the right hand
up again to repeat this motion. As soon as the right hand touches the left and starts to move
down, release the ring. Time the drop of your right hand such that it falls at the same speed as
the ring. Stop when the right hand is about four inches below the left.

The spectators believe the ring is in the left hand, but it is actually in the right. Keeping the string
taut, raise the right hand up until it is even with the left and the string is stretched horizontally
between the closed hands (left hand palm up, right hand palm down). “This ring had some very
magical properties.”
Ask Sally to wave the stick over your left hand. Slowly tug the string to the right, allowing it to
come free of the left hand. The ring is no longer on the center of the string! It has apparently
penetrated through the string, and everyone thinks it is in the closed left hand. Slowly and
dramatically open the left hand. The ring has vanished!

“Even though his concept of the western wand was not to scale, it, too, had magical properties.”
Lift the tube, leaving one shell on the table while holding the rest of the stack inside. There is a bit
of a knack to this, but you’ll acquire it after a few tries. Replace the tube to the left of the shell and
pick up the shell at the fingertips of the palm down left hand. Display the “ring” (shell) for a
moment and then make a tossing motion toward the string in the right hand. During this motion,
the left thumb draws the shell into finger palm. Simultaneously, the right hand releases the ring,
which drops down to the looped center of the string. The ring has seemingly penetrated back onto
the string.

The left hand takes the left side of the string where it protrudes from the right hand. The finger-
palmed ring is hidden via Ramsay Subtlety. Separate the hands, such that you now hold the
string horizontally. The hands are about a 8-10 inches apart, with the threaded ring between
them.

Say, “Fu often tied his ring on the string, to keep from losing it.” Tie a slipknot onto the ring. Then
pass the right end in front of the knot, through the left side of the ring and pull it back to the right.
Grab the ring in the right fist. Ask Sally and Linus to each hold an end of the string, pulling the
string taut.

“It would stay firmly in place, unless he didn’t want it to.” Slide your hand back and forth on the
string. The knot will secretly untie, freeing the ring from the string. In a plucking motion, pull the
ring away from the string. This is a very strong effect! During the reaction, set the ring in the left
hand, quietly nesting it in the shell. Take the stick from Sally with your right hand as your left
thumb pushes the nested ring up to the fingertips.

Tap the ring with the stick a couple of times. “Strong ring!” Table the stick and ring and take the
string, giving it a few firm tugs. “Strong string!” Drop the string on the table. As you pick up the
ring in your left hand and the stick in your right, say, “Strong magic!”

You will now do Sam Horowitz’ (Muhammad Bey) ring and stick effect. Hold the ring in left-hand
French Drop position, but with the ring parallel to the floor and your knuckles facing the audience
(left fingers pointing to your right). Obviously, the nested shell is on top of the ring. Hold the stick
near the center between the right thumb and forefinger. The knuckles of the right hand are toward
the audience and the top of the stick is tilted away from you at a 45-degree angle. Ask if they
would like to see the stick go through the ring. Pass the stick down through the ring. When the
right hand reaches the ring, the three free fingers grip the stick below the ring and the thumb and
forefinger release the stick as you continue to smoothly move the stick entirely through the ring.
Repeat this.

Repeat again, but this time let the ring drop free of the shell onto the right fingers as the right
hand moves the stick entirely through the ring and off to the right. Thus, the ring is secretly
threaded on the center of the stick, but nothing seems amiss, as the shell is still in view at the left
fingertips. The steal must be done smoothly and without pause, duplicating the first two passes if
it is to be deceptive. This whole sequence (the first two passes and the steal) is done as a gag—
they thought you were going to penetrate the stick through the ring.

Say, “I can see that you are not impressed by that, so let me show you something else Fu Ling
showed me.” The right fist is holding the stick at center. It is also secretly holding the ring, which
is threaded at center. Turn the fist palm down so the stick is parallel with the floor and have Sally
hold both ends of the stick firmly. The left hand places the shell into the right fist where it is
thumb-palmed. Wait a beat, then slide the right hand back and down off the stick, causing the ring
to spin on the stick, and carrying the shell away in thumb palm. As everyone reacts to the
penetration, pick up the string with right hand and put it in the right coat pocket, secretly dropping
the ring along with the string.

Take the stick back with your left hand and dump the ring into your right hand. Comment, “Let me
just get that purse again.” Set the stick down and reach into your left pants pocket. Act confused
and look over toward your right pants pocket as your left hand comes out of its pocket. Pretend to
place the ring into the left hand, retaining it in the right hand, which then goes into the right pants
pocket, drops the ring and comes out with the purse frame. (This sequence is Juan Tamariz’
“Crossing the Gaze” concept.)

Open the purse and pretend to dump the non-existent ring into it. Close the purse at the
fingertips, showing both hands clearly empty. Remark, “It happened again!” The left hand lifts the
tube, taking the coin but leaving the second shell behind, and tables the tube to the right of the
shell. Meanwhile, the right hand has placed the purse frame in the right side coat pocket, taken
the ball into finger palm and come back out of the pocket.

Here begins the final load sequence, accompanied by a series of the worst puns of all time!

Pick up the shell at your left fingertips as you say, “That wand had a familiar ring!” The right hand
picks up the tube, revealing the coin, and loads the ball as the tube is tabled. Exclaim, “This thing
is a real money maker!” In the meantime, the left hand has been far from idle. It has placed the
shell in your left side coat pocket, taken the ball bearing in low finger palm, removed the hand
from the pocket and picked up the stick.

Pick up the coin at the right fingertips and say, “That’s a real Chinese coin.” Tap the coin near the
hole with the tip of the stick. “It has a hole, for Peek-ing!” Set the coin back on the table.

Address Sally. “You look like you’re having a ball!” Using the end of the stick, tip the tube back to
reveal the ball. In a continuing motion, lift the tube with the stick and let it slide down to your left
hand. Take the stick with your right hand and use it to push the ball forward as you say, “Having a
ball—get it?” At the same time, the left hand tables the tube, loading the ball bearing in it.

Look at Linus and remark, “This trick has had no bearing on you—until now!” use the stick to tip
the tube back, revealing the ball bearing as the final load. To conclude, state, “Of course, none of
this story is actually true—I’ve just been Fu Ling!”

				
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