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Anthony Vinson

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Reply with quote  #1 
My deep dive book from the dusty shelf for the month of November is Woody Aragon's A Book in English. The past couple of days I have been playing around with his move, The Separagon, a method of separating cards (blacks and reds, evens and odds, etc) on the fly and in full view of the spectators.

The method itself is simple enough, and I managed to grasp the basics after several attempts. The timing and rhythm on the other hand... It seems to me that this is one of those moves you've gotta be able to do in your sleep while simultaneously working out Fermi's Paradox. 

Wondering if anyone of the forum either uses, or has played around with, the move? If so, I'd be interested in hearing about your experiences, and whether it's something you've found practical.

Yes, there are other methods to accomplish the same end, including Harry's Great Divide. Thing is, I sometimes get hung up on cool moves and such to the point of obsession, and this one's got me intrigued.

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Chi Han

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Reply with quote  #2 
I use this. It's very practical. If you miss any, I correct it with an oil.and water. It doesn't take much to get the separation. Just sight it, even peripherally, then throw it out casually.
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Mbreggar

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Reply with quote  #3 
Hi Av,

I like Woody's Seperagon too. I frequently use it in trick #2 in my card set: I start with one of my effects that requires a bit of a stack. Then have the specs shuffle thoroughly and I do a face up ribbon spread to show all the cards "well mixed", but I am memorizing the top card. Swing cut then force that former top card with a riffle force (any force of that card will do -- sometimes I even do the Balducci cut deeper force). The card is kept out of the deck and I say I will guess the card by process of elimination and mathematics. I go through the deck doing the Seperagon red/black separation move and then just put the deck aside (now properly sorted) while announcing the name of the card. Next (trick 3), I do a 3-phase Oil and Water (I like Tamariz's version for this) and say that the audience's "separation power was so strong tonight, it moved in a big wave all across the table and hit the deck over there which you had previously completely shuffled." I spread the deck face up and the audience melts when the see the reds and blacks separated!

When I execute the Seperagon, I do it rhythmically. I drum my fingers a bit before I start, then do the bass-line chord beginning of the Beatles "Come Together". As I go through the deck, I slam the cards down on the table to the beat of "Come Together" as I sing the first few lines. The deck is all down on the table when I get to "...Come Together. Right now. Over me..." I stand up and encourage the audience to join in and sign that last line with me.  Wow, what a difference that made in the performance... somehow the singing bits helped with the distraction. And it's awfully fun! 

Try it!


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Anthony Vinson

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Reply with quote  #4 
Thanks, guys, you've inspired me to keep at it.

Mike, here's a funny coincidence... of sorts. A short while ago I was practicing the Separagon while listening to a radio show. When the show returned from break, the bumper music was Nancy Sinatra's These Boots are Made for Walking. I found myself separating cards to the beat of the song and thought, "Hey, this works!" Now I don't know that I'll break into, "Are you ready boots? Start walking!", while doing the move, but I might have to consider it now!

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Mbreggar

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Well, you know me adding music as part of my magic (as opposed to the underscoring of the magic). I started to think about it watching Dani DaOrtiz as he dealt through a lot of cards for a trick. He is constants humming! A first I found it distracting...then charming...and then I realized that’s the whole point!! So what song could I start where I could quickly get to the lyrics’ end with a phrase everyone knows? “Come Together” came to mind. I like the Beatles anyway!
Hmmm... Nancy Sinatra’s “Boots......”. Hmmmmmmm .........
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luigimar

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Reply with quote  #6 
Woody also made a video with the Separagon. Maybe it could help you see the details you think you are "missing." If you are interested, here's a place you can get it from:

http://www.penguinmagic.com/p/S19709




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Robin Dawes

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Reply with quote  #7 
Woody often sings/hums little songs when he is performing - like "I'm dealing the cards in two piles, in two piles, in two piles, I'm dealing the cards in two piles ... " etc.  It fills procedural time and it's amusing!
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Anthony Vinson

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Reply with quote  #8 
Luigimar, thanks for the link. Woody - or his translator or both - do a great job of explaining the move, even providing a series of progressive pictures to illustrate each step.

Robin, that's interesting. I have never seen Woody perform, not even on video, but I have noted that Danny Da'Ortiz frequently hums, sings, or musically mumbles, almost absentmindedly, during performances. Natural styles? Affectations? Both?

Again, thanks for all the assistance, suggestions, and comments. I am coming right along with the move and should have it mastered in a matter of two or three years!

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Mbreggar

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Reply with quote  #9 
Av, here’s a hint ... move at a constant cadence (another reason I like to do this with music..it helps keep things moving at a proper tempo) and don’t be afraid of making mistakes and “missing” on several cards. Think about the standard situation of picking up a fairly messy deck from a table and straightening it all out. It is very natural for you to flip some cards around and moving a couple from various spots to the top or bottom portion. So you can fix these “mistakes” right in front of the spectators! Look into their eyes when you do this. Your peripheral vision will easily recognize the colors. Also, I follow up with effects that require a small packet of 8-10 cards. It is perfectly natural to run through the straightened deck to pick out the cards “that work best.” Of course, the cards you pick are the mistakes ...plus a few others!

In short.. the heat is really off of you and you have a chance to fix things as necessary. So relax and just do It!


...mike
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Anthony Vinson

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Reply with quote  #10 
Will do! Like Chi Han mentioned, there's also the Cheeky Oil and Water that Woody sometimes uses. Thanks for the tips and encouragement!

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Mbreggar

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Reply with quote  #11 
I got that idea from “Cheeky”. Check out Woody’s first Penguin lecture. It is excellent: Seperagon, Oil and Water, and Blessed Poker and more


By the way, one of my all time fave ACAANs is in “Book in English”. I think it’s called “Never Tell them what you are going to do”. Or something like that.
Check it out. It is terrific.
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