The Key Card

Effect: This card trick is quite possible responsible for more free beers than any other in history. It's not just a magic trick, it's a cleverly-laid trap guaranteed to win you a frosty cold one.

Here's how it plays out:

Your friend freely chooses a card and places it on top of the deck. You lose the card in the center by taking turns with your friend cutting the deck, then completing the cut. When both of you are confident that neither of you knows where the card is, you begin dealing the cards face up on the table. Long after your friend's card has been dealt face up on the table, you hold out the next card in the deck (which clearly can't be his card), and bet your friend that the next card you turn over will be his card. Since he can plainly see his card on the table, already turned up, he'll think you've messed up and that his victory is a sure thing!

However, imagine his surprise when you put the card you're holding back into the deck, and instead turn over his face up card on the table!

Secret: Before starting, know what card is on the bottom of the deck. For this explanation, we'll say it's the ace of spades. When you cut his card into the deck, the Ace of Spades will be right on top of it. No matter how many times you cut the cards, the Ace will always be on top of his card! When you deal the cards face up onto the table, notice which card comes after the Ace-- that's his card!