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HONEST, now you can CHEAT for free!

HONEST, now you can CHEAT for free!
Copyright 2007 by Ron Bauer

Senator Crandall's "Everything Fair Poker Deal" was to be one of the RBPS Series, but it didn't make the cut. Instead, Bruce Cervon and I were saving it for a book we'd planned to write about Clarke "The Senator" Crandall. Unfortunately, several years of procrastination followed by Bruce's illness delayed our progress on the book. Now that Bruce has passed on, I doubt that I'll ever write and publish it, mostly because he was the connection to Clarke's family who should be part of the project, working title: "How to Add More Magic to Your Comedy."

I have used this effect with some modificati ons since the sixties when I got it from Clarke. Only a few times did I ever teach it to anyone. Recently, though, one of those with whom I shared this little master piece decided to put it on the market under his own name! As Clarke put it about this kind of thing, it was "...copied and pirated and pilfered... by chowderheads who even copied the instructions and patter."

So, go ahead and throw away twenty bucks, or read this for FREE. For a side-by-side comparison, read Cameron’s Comparison (PDF)

Senator Clarke Crandall's
Edited version by Ron Bauer

Copyright 2007 Ron Bauer

This is a very commercial poker deal, and about the only one that has a comedy premise. I have used it for a long time and have found it pleases and certainly entertains.

The plot is simple... You state that although many gamblers cheat, you NEVER do and will prove it! You shuffle the deck, and a spectator cuts. You "fairly" deal two hands of draw poker, but the spectator notices some very suspicious actions. An additional two spectators join the game, and through some quirk of fate, you just "happen" to get the winning hand.

The first twenty cards are set up, which allows any number of false shuffles and as the top card is short, it may always be cut to the top after a cut. The deck may be set up and in the pocket.

The set up consists of twenty cards.

To make it easier to set them up, pick out the following cards: the Four Aces---The Four Kings--the Four Queens--Three Jacks (you don't use the Jack of Hearts) the Ten of Spades and the two, three, four and five or Hearts.

The Ace of Hearts is the short card and goes face up first onto the table. Then as follows; all face up onto the Ace of Hearts: 10S--2H--AS--AC---3H--QS--KS--4H--QD--KC--KD--KH--5H--JS--AD--QH--QC--JC--JD. Put this packet of twenty cards face down on the rest of the cards.

I keep the set up deck in the case and you're ready for a request by the audience for "What would happen if you were to play in a regular poker game?"

My regular deck has been put away and I bring out the set up deck and go to work.

    NOTE: A deck with matching backs may be used for some preliminary effect in which the Ace of Hearts is forced. The deck is shuffled and placed in the pocket alongside the set up deck. The selected card is named, and reaching into the pocket, the Ace of Hearts is removed and shown. The balance of the set up deck is then taken from the pocket and you are ready for the poker deal.

    PATTER: "Many people are afraid to play cards with strangers because they are afraid they will be cheated. It would be OK to play cards with me because I don't cheat and would see that everything would be fair. You can trust me because I have an honest face. Notice how well I shuffle the deck. I'll even let you cut them. I want you to be satisfied that everything is fair and above board."

  1. During this brilliant monologue, you have false shuffled the deck keeping the top twenty in order. An over hand shuffle, taking the back half of the cards and running them onto the other half is good. Cut the deck a few times and offer them to the spectator to cut. Complete the cut and pick up the deck.
  2. PATTER: "I want you to tell me if I should cut the cards any more or leave them as they are... You have a free choice. I'll do what ever you say..."

  3. As you say this, cut the short Ace to the top. The above patter actually means nothing, but it amuses me so I use it. No matter what they say, hold the deck as for dealing and continue.
  4. PATTER: "I'll deal two hands of draw poker--five cards each--five to you and five to me. Watch me closely and see how easy it is to win, and still play fair. If you see me cheat, say so; I don't want anything crooked going on in this game."

  5. You will now "deal" two hands of cards. Instead of pushing cards off with your left thumb, and taking them with your right hand, do this: Pick cards off the deck by grasping them from above by the ends with your thumb and second finger. Always take one when dealing to your spectator's hand. For yours, though, you count the necessary number by riffling up the inner end with your right thumb. By keeping the deck away from you, almost at arms length, you can easily glimpse the number you're counting. As you place cards onto each hand, drop them from about six or seven inches above the table.
    • Deal ONE card to your opponent and ONE to you.
    • Deal ONE card to him and TWO to you.
    • Deal ONE to him and THREE to you.
    • Deal ONE to him and FOUR to you.
    • On the last deal, ONE to him and THREE to you.
    The fact that you get TWO cards on the second deal may go unnoticed, but the THREE and FOUR cards usually cause some comment. Pay no attention to what anyone says. Continue dealing.
  6. PATTER: "Everything is fair, isn't it? Feel free to stop me if I cheat. One to you... One to me... Two to you... Two to me, etc. You have five cards, don't you? So, so everything's fair. I'm careful to deal fairly so there won't be any question later."

  7. Keep talking, no matter what is said. Don't try to hide the fact that several cards are dealt to you---just plunk them down and keep going as if everything was fair.
  8. NOTE: The deal has been... One and One - One and Two - One and Three - One and Four - One and Three. You will have thirteen cards.

    PATTER: "Please pick up your five cards and I will play my five and we'll see who wins. So far it's been pretty fair, hasn't it?"

  9. Pick up your thirteen cards, spread them out, look surprised or act it anyway, and then say, brightly...
  10. PATTER: "I think I have too many cards."

  11. Now this is the understatement of the year.
  12. PATTER: "You should have stopped me. I must have thought I was playing Bridge! This may be a misdeal. I hope not as I want you to be satisfied that I'm not cheating. I think I have seven cards, so I'll discard two, and we'll go right on with the game."

  13. Count the cards face down one at a time, one onto the other until you have counted five cards. This time, hold the cards in left hand dealing position, and take them with your right hand. On "six," push off all the cards above the bottom one, and drop "it" onto the five cards. Don't try to conceal the fact that "it" is more than one. Drop the last card onto the rest. Pick them up, discard the top two cards. Spread the remainder and say...
  14. PATTER: "I still have too many cards. Th is is the first time this has happened again. I'm sorry but you should have said something. I'll discard the extra cards--it seems I still have seven."

  15. Count them exactly as you did in Step 7. Discard two cards.
  16. PATTER: "That's better, but... I still have too many cards. Someplace I must have dealt incorrectly. I'd better count them again, if you don't mind. I want everything to be fair."

  17. Again go through the motions as per Step 7, and discard two cards.
  18. PATTER: "Now you play your five and... Wait a minute... I still have too many cards! That's pretty stupid of me. And I counted them so carefully, too. I'll have to get this right or you'll get the idea I cheat! And I don't want that."

  19. Count your remaining cards, one at a time, face down onto each other. Discard the top two, which will leave you with five cards as required for the classic game of Draw Poker. Pick up the remaining five cards, holding them as you would in a regular poker game. You will have the QC, QH, AS, QS, and KS in your hand. If you don't have these cards, stop the trick and go into bird calls. Turn the AS and the KS face down on the table and the three Queens face up beside them.
  20. PATTER: "I will only need to draw two cards and hope I will get another queen. But so you won't think I've been unfair, I will let you play the cards you have, or you may throw them away and pick out a better hand from the ones I discarded. Put your five cards down and pick out a hand from the discards. See how you make out."

  21. He will have the QD, 3H, 2H, AH, and JS in his hand. He could draw two cards, but you give him no chance to do it. Insist he get a new hand from the cards you have thrown away. He will be able to assemble a full house: three Kings and two Aces. This is a good hand, and beats what you have in sight.
  22. PATTER: "Now that you have picked out a better hand, put the extra cards there with your former hand. You can't say I haven't been fair. Let's get another player in the game. How about you? There would be no use to deal new cards. Take the ones he threw away. See if there is a good hand among them. I think that's more than fair."

  23. Turn to a second spectator and give him the eight cards from the table. He will easily find five good cards among them. In fact, he can't help himself. The Ace, Two, Three, Four, and Five of Hearts are staring him in the face! His discards will be the QD, JS, and 10S.
  24. PATTER: "Are you both satisfied? Now I will draw the two cards I need. Very few gamblers would let you pick out good hands like I did. Let's see what you have left me..."

  25. Pick up the three discarded cards. Show the QD but keep the other two hidden, with the faces towards you.
  26. PATTER: "That's nice of you... There's the Queen I needed. I was afraid one of you would keep it and spoil my four Queens."

  27. Pick up all your cards, plus the three discards. Your four of a kind threat won't scare the fellow with the straight heart flush and the original player with the full house won't be worried. Look thru the eight cards, faces towards you, of course and discard the three queens, keeping them face down. This will leave you with a fat, black Royal Flush in Spades. This will do as a hand until a better one comes along. Turn to a third player and say...
  28. PATTER: "We need another player to make it a four handed game. I should have dealt four hands to begin with, but I wanted to prove I can deal fairly, not cheat, and still win... Will you, sir, please take the three cards left and draw two more from the deck? You don't get a chance to select your own cards like the others did, but you only came into the game on the tail end."

  29. Give the third player the three cards and two more from the top of the balance of the deck. You have thrown away the three Queens and he will get two Jacks from the deck which will give him a nice full house. You are now ready for the climax.
  30. PATTER: "This being Showdown Poker, and as I have given you all a chance to draw the cards you wanted anyway, you'll have to admit it's been very fair. I even took the cards you left! What did you draw? A Full House--that's good. And, your hand? All Hearts... a Straight Flush! YOU can't complain. Your hand? ...another Full House! And, you all thought I kept the queens, didn't you?... Instead, I drew to an almost impossible hand... Look, a Royal Flush in Spades! I didn't cheat... and everything was fair--or almost fair, wasn't it?"

COMMENT: The pace should move briskly, or not too slow anyway. Keep talking and learn the effect. It's not too complicated and you'll have no trouble remembering it. If you have any sense of showmanship at all, you can keep their interest and above all, you will have entertained them as well. Good luck to you with the "EVERYTHING FAIR POKER DEAL."

Clarke THE SENATOR Crandall
54 W. Randolph St.
Chicago 1, Ill.


Copyright 2007 by Ron Bauer