One Ahead

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by ShenkermanDavid, Mar 23, 2020.

  1. After doing the “a Day of Your Life” effect by Annemann, which utilizes the one ahead principle, I was worried that people would be able to figure out the method. I know Cassidy recommends to commit an answer to writing to solve the one ahead issue but it wouldn’t really be appropriate in this scenario. Do you think I should just stick with Anneman’s methodology? Is it’s one ahead method clever enough? If not, what do you recommend?
  2. Hi David,

    It sounds like you're either suffering from Magician's Guilt, which is a common affliction suffered by prestidigitators who perform great effects with simple methods; or you're questioning the merits of the one-ahead principle due to it either being well-known or easily puzzled out.

    While I'm not familiar with "A day of your life" by Annemann, your post did cause me to recall something I read online in the Jerx:

    I think you may get some ideas from this post on how to hide the one-ahead principle, or at the very least, you should enjoy reading this presentational idea.

    RealityOne likes this.
  3. Osterlind has a routine which uses the Breakthrough Card System with the One ahead principle

    what makes it convincing is they pick the card but never look at it until the end after everything is already written down so so in their mind there is no way you could know the card either
  4. #4 RealityOne, Mar 25, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020 at 9:26 AM
    "A Day of Your Life" is a really good routine. The good part about the one-ahead is that you are not doing any writing (avoiding the problem the Jerx is trying to fix and the issue Osterland is disguising using the card selection). The final thing written (the clock face) is the first thing revealed and the method for that isn't one-ahead. That throws the whole scent off. The second thing revealed ("breakfast") isn't really one-ahead either because you haven't looked at any of the other slips. So that really leaves two revelations that are one-ahead, but by that time you already have two hits with the other methods. That makes the method of using one-ahead invisible.

    The key to that effect is to not be perfect and to embellish. I'd do it verbally for the time (although writing it down has less of a chance of them trying to change their answer)."Do you wake up to an alarm or music? [if yes] "I thought so, your thinking of a time that is a on the half hour. I'm getting the sense it is 6:30? [Exact time]. [If no] "I'm getting that sense. You woke up a little later, between 8:30 and 9:00" [they wrote down 8:47]. If you do write it down, be off by five minutes.

    "For breakfast, I'm sensing you didn't do the typical cereal and milk, but it was something a little more substantial. You don't like your eggs scrambled, do you? [if yes] I thought so. [if no] I thought so, how do you like them? [use answer in next sentence], So you had bacon and scrambled [or whatever they said] eggs. [Open up the slip and read it] There you go, "bacon and eggs."

    "For lunch, do you make your own or buy something? [answer is buy something] "I do get the sense that you like to buy a good sandwich." [if answer is make your own] I do get the sense that you like to make your own sandwich. It was a sandwich you had, right? You seem like the type of guy that likes a good Italian hoagie (sub, grinder, whatever they call it where you live) but you didn't have one of those yesterday. [they agree to the last part, but the audience thinks they are agreeing to the whole statement]. No, you had something more basic, did you have a ham and cheese sandwich?

    The key is selling that you are "reading" them. Give them more than just what was written down. That takes whatever heat there is off the method.
    MohanaMisra likes this.
  5. Huh, that defintely clears things up a bit. Still when people like Cassidy say the one-ahead is crude, he means the part where you "verify" the slip after figuring out what it is. Like if you eventually say "bacon and eggs" why do you have to open the slip to say "there you go, bacon and eggs". Although, if you truly make it seem like you are reading them, it could disguise the method I suppose. An interesting thing I saw in Corinda was the three little questions routine. He answers each question vaguely, so that there is a reason for "verifying" what the question is. Would this work in "A Day of Your Life"? Or should I stick to its original methodology.
  6. The thing about the "One-ahead" principle, is it factors on not being able to reconstruct it, and that is the biggest flaw of the one-ahead principle, you have to be able to "prove" that you couldn't go one ahead and that usually relies on the "ending" revelation but it still leaves the rest of the routine wide-open for people to think back and go, "I said it before they wrote it down" even if they can't figure out the ending one
  7. So the issue is with justification. Is your reading it justified? Is the use of the slip justified? If you joke about how difficult it is to remember what you did the day before, you could use that as the justification for having the spectator writing it down, "Now, I'm going to ask you to think of several things and once you think of them, I'm going to ask you to write down what you were thinking. That way you don't forget." When you read the slip, I'd say, "I can tell from your expression that I'm close... let me see what you wrote down." You look at the paper, read it and nod. "I was pretty close, can you tell the audience what you were thinking of?" They say bacon and eggs. I would then say something like, "Let's move on to lunch, do your remember what you wrote down? Good. I want you to think of that now." This both justifies the use of the slip and puts less emphasis on it (they announce it). Also, having them say what they were thinking makes a better reveal.

    So I went the other way by adding to what was written down. By seemingly providing more information, the slip becomes less relevant. Also, if what you say if not exactly the same as the slip, it reduced the spectator's ability to decipher the method.

    Annemann's routine (which is in The Jinx) has the spectator writing down what they are thinking rather than the magician writing down what they are thinking. That structure much better disguises the method than the typical one-ahead where the magician writes down all the answers and then reveals them.

  8. Yes, I had forgotten about that routine until it was brought up here

    it is really how you manage it, and the importance/emphasis you put on things, etc, and also combining techniques using the one-ahead with peeks or other things could be managed in a way to be completely undetectable and not suspicious
    RealityOne likes this.
  9. Thanks guys, this really helped

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