How to Catch a Thief!

Brian scams the Hak5 crew! Watch them learn this classic trick where three objects are stolen and three thieves are rightfully accused.

The Setup:

Grab 3 random friends and 3 random objects (we'll refer to the random objects as A, B, and C here). Dump out a container of exactly 24 Tic Tacs, matches, or coins (it's important that you have exactly 24 counters, but it's equally important that you act like you don't even know or care how many there are). Next, pass out a few of the Tic Tacs so one of your players has 1, one has 2, and one has 3. Next, turn your back and ask that each of your players "steal" one object and hide it somewhere you won't find it.

The Game:

Now by giving a few instructions, you'll be able to know who took which object! Simply ask them to do the following:

"Whoever took object A: I want you think of how many Tic Tacs you were given. Now take that number out of the pile and eat them."

"Whoever took object B: I want you think of how many Tic Tacs you were given. Now take TWICE that number out of the pile and eat them."

"Whoever took object C: I want you think of how many Tic Tacs you were given. Now take FOUR TIMES number out of the pile and eat them."

When you turn around, there will be some number of Tic Tacs left over (between 1 and 7 of them). This number will reveal to you who has which object! Remember, each person has a number of Tic Tacs assigned to them, and each stolen object has letter assigned to it. So here's how the number of Tic Tacs gives you the answer of who took what:

1 Tic Tac: Person 1 has A, 2 has B, 3 has C

2 Tic Tacs: Person 1 has B, 2 has A, 3 has C

3 Tic Tacs: Person 1 has A, 2 has C, 3 has B

4 Tic Tacs: Not possible

5 Tic Tacs: Person 1 has B, 2 has C, 3 has A

6 Tic Tacs: Person 1 has C, 2 has A, 3 has B

7 Tic Tacs: Person 1 has C, 2 has B, 3 has A

...now that's a lot to remember, but luckily, there's one magic sentence that will make it SUPER easy to remember:

"ABsolutely, BriAn's ACtive shows BeCkon CheAting ContriButions."

It's a silly sentence, but as long as you'll remember it, you'll know who has which object. Each word marks a number 1-7, and the capitalized letters tell you, in order, what object person 1 and person 2 have.

So if you turn around and there are 3 Tic Tacs left, you'll look at the third word, "ACtive", and know that person one has object A, person 2 has C, and (by default), person 3 has B!