Lesson 1: Plunging a dinner fork into your eyeball


“It’s a hit at parties”

I realized, I mention that I like antique motorcycles, magic and slight of hand in my profile, but I don’t really talk about it in my blog much. I like card tricks and little mental hotfoots (as George Carlin put it)– I’m not even a competent magician but I’ve learned a few things here and there. (something on motorcycles is coming up soon, promise). In the meantime, here’s a fun little diversion I’ve been torturing people with in diners for years. The effect can be quite startling.

Take 1 standard creamer container (liquid, not powder).

Palm this.. hide it up your sleeve or put it in your hand so it can’t be seen, but don’t make it look artificial. Alas, there aren’t very many good resources on the web about how to run pater (running commentary that distracts your rube) and how to divert attention from what your hands are doing. If you are a novice in this area, you might try some of Dover Press’ cloesup card magic books, they have some good tips on pater and distraction.

Take 1 standard dinner fork… locate your mark/rube/victim

Casually mention “Hey, would you like me to show you how to stab out your eye with a fork? It’s a real show-stopper!”

They should naturally disagree. If they don’t… meaning, they actually want to see you stick a fork in your eye… perhaps it’s time to go shopping for some new friends.

Then pretend to coax them, they will grow more vehement.

Act fed up. Then say “Okay, I’ll do it first to show you it’s harmless”

Start mugging with the fork… pull your eyelid up, move the fork around menancingly. Comment on how razor sharp the tines on the fork are, or something. Even if it’s complete crap. The point is to get them to look at the fork, and the eye.

IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP: don’t bring the fork near your eye. Just make it look like you are ABOUT to do it.

Then cup the creamer container (foil pointing out) into your left hand, hold it in front of your eye so that your mark can’t see it.. it looks as if your are channeling the fork into your eye by guiding it with your left hand, and using your right hand, are about stab your own eye out. Make up a convenient lie about how you don’t want eye juice to spray out all over everyone.

SWIFTLY, stab the foil with the fork, and give that cream container a mighty SQUEEZE! the Mark will think a jet of white eye-goo has erupted from your socket. Drop the fork. keep the creamer balled up in your fist. Roll around and scream convincingly. Keep the “wounded” eye shut.

Of course, you will have to reveal this trick if you don’t wish to leave the party in an ambulance. Once revealed, it usually generates huge laughs and elevates you to near-Godhood status amongst your peers.

FINAL SAFETY TIP: For the love of GOD, practice a few times… slowly, and in a place where you can clean up creamer spooge. HIT THE CREAMER, not your eye!

Attribution: This is a trick I learned from perusing the great Penn & Teller’s book HOW TO PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD, now sadly out of print, but still available through Amazon.com’s used book store. Check out P&T’s Emmy nominated Bullshit! TV show on SHOWTIME!

One comment

  1. woo, giving guests heart attacks is da best YEH!!!!!

    take that great aunt petunia, now you’ll think twice before giving me a flabbing microscope for my birthday!

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