Mismate (Memorized Deck)

Simon Aronson was a genius, here’s an idea he inspired…

Alright, here’s an interesting idea I had based on an effect from the legendary Simon Aronson.

The effect is called ‘Mismate’ and is described in detail in the book Bound to Please (which I’m gonna assume you own by now.)

You DO own it, right? 😉

Oh, good.

You scared me for a minute there.

You can buy it here if not: https://www.vanishingincmagic.com/card-magic/bound-to-please/

Here’s what the effect looks like:

The spectator cuts and shuffles the cards. You run through the deck, showing all the cards are mixed, and remove one card, displaying it to the audience. Let’s say it’s the 2 of Hearts (2H.)

You place it in the center of the deck, outjogged.

Now you start dealing cards from the top of the deck from one hand to the other, telling them you want them to stop you on the card they think is the ‘mate’ of the 2H (i.e the 2 of Diamonds.)

Sooner or later, they’ll tell you ‘stop.’

The second they do, you stop and place both their chosen card and the outjogged card down on the table.

You remind them that you wanted them to find you the 2 of Diamonds.

You turn over their selected card to reveal none other than the…4 of Diamonds.

It looks like the trick has failed, until you make a magical gesture over the other card (the one they SAW to be the 2H) and turn it over to reveal the 4 of Hearts.

Looks like they succeeded, with a little dose of helping magic!

The method:

Simon Aronson deserves full credit for this routine, so make sure to check this out in his book for all the details.

However, in order for my variation to make sense, I’ll need to give you a rough outline of what’s going on.

Here’s the short version:

After the spectator shuffles, you glimpse the top and bottom card. In this case, the bottom card was the 4 of Diamonds and the top card was the 2 of Hearts. You say you’ll remove the 2 of Hearts, but in reality you’ll find the mate of the bottom card—the 4 of Hearts.

Place the 4H on top of the deck and do a double lift to show the ‘2 of Hearts.’

Now you’re going to place the two cards into the center of the deck as one, and secretly ‘ditch’ the bottom card of the two (i.e ditch the 2H and keep the 4H)

Aronson has a good suggestion based on a Marlo move, but I prefer to use a method shown to me by Aaron Fisher in his routine ‘The Rising.’

Lift the two cards from the top of the deck as one, with your thumb on the back, first finger resting along the horizontal top edge of the card and your middle finger curled underneath (it should look a little bit like you’re Ricky Smith Jr. about to slice up some bananas by throwing cards.)

As the cards are inserted into the middle of the deck, your middle finger (hidden from view by the card) slides slowly down and pushed the lower card flush with the pack. As ever, the bigger motion of inserting the card should cover the smaller motion of the middle finger moving slightly.

Finally, rotate the card so it’s outjogged diagonally to the left (so you can hold the deck biddle grip style in a moment.)

Once you’ve done this, here’s a situation check:

The audience thinks the 2H is the card diagonally outjogged.

In reality, the card outjogged is the 4H. On the bottom of the deck, you have the 4D.

Now you’re going to count cards from the top of the deck, Biddle style.

(anyone familiar with Biddle tricks might have an inkling of what’s coming next…)

Once they call out stop, you’re going to steal the bottom card onto the packet.

Here’s how:

Pull down the bottom right corner of the bottom card with your left pinky before you transfer the cards from left hand to right. As you do, transfer the break to your right thumb.

Now, peel cards from the top of the deck into your left hand. When they tell you to stop, bring the left hand packet beneath the deck in the motion of removing the outjogged card.

Now drop the card beneath the thumb break onto the packet as you peel out the outjogged card with your left thumb.

You’re now set for the reveal!

That’s the basic routine as I handle it.

Here’s my input:

If you were to perform this effect with a memorized deck, I’d wager it’d solve a couple of the main problems with the routine.

The first is that in the regular routine, you need to glimpse both the top and bottom card.

With a memorized deck, you only need to do half the work—glimpsing the bottom card will TELL you the top card! (it’ll be the card that comes after that card in the order of your stack.)

This way, we can false shuffle, then let them cut. When it comes time to glimpse, we only need to look at the bottom card to figure out the top card and proceed as usual.

Actually, that’s not quite true.

See, we can do one more cool thing with the mem deck.

Our goal is now to remove the card that MATCHES the bottom card and then do a double lift to display it as the top card.

Rather than just randomly removing a card for no reason (which I find to be an arbitrary and strange thing to do) I’d let them pick the card.

Since we’re using a mem deck, and we know the bottom card, we know exactly where the card we want is.

For example, let’s say I’m in the Tamariz stack.

The bottom card is Ace of Diamonds. (39.)

I now know that the top card is the 4 of Spades (40.)

Not only that, I know that the card I WANT (the Ace of Hearts) is 51.

And if the top card is 40, that means the AH is 12 cards deep (the order of the deck from the top down is 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51.)

With that knowledge, I can quickly spread and catch a break in that position, ready for classic forcing—or practically any other force!

Now I have a justified REASON for using this card, rather than just the fact I want to.

I can have them place it face down on the table, then pick it up and say “actually, we’ll need it in the deck for this” and do my double lift and insertion process.

Now I can proceed as in the original routine.

Resetting the stack:

Since you just counted cards from one hand to the other Biddle-style, you’ll have reversed the order of those cards.

There are two ways you can fix this.

One would be to just count them back onto the deck, reversing the initial reversal (yeah…take that!)

The other would be to look at the top card of the reversed pile, which will actually tell you how many cards deep you are. (i.e if the card is the King of Diamonds, you know the pile contains 26 cards.)

You’ll need to subtract at least 1 from that number, since you removed the top card, plus potentially 2 if the card you forced is below that stack number.

(so potentially either 25 or 24 is the true number.)

Now place the entire pile back on top of the deck and do an overhand shuffle, running the cards singly until you reach that number, at which point you can throw the balance of the deck beneath them.

That’s reversed the count.

Now place one of the cards on the table back on the bottom of the deck (where it came from) and the other one you’ll need to manually reinsert in the right place.

There you have it.

Mismate with a mem deck, my idea for today.

Once again, all credit for this goes to Simon Aronson—the man who made so many of these ideas possible!

Hope you enjoyed!

The Daily Magician.

P.S. If you haven’t learned Stack yet, go here: https://magicmastery.cc/tutorial/learn-the-mem-deck/

Want to go deeper? Our full Skyscraper course is OFF-SALE to the general public, but as a member, you can pick it up!

Here’s a link to the sales page: https://thedailymagician.com/skyscraper-ic