Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by kthrzne, Feb 8, 2020.

  1. I'm looking into getting into card stacks/systems and after doing some preliminary research I'm looking for some advice on what to focus on, right now I'm split between wanting to work on either the Aronson stack or the Osterlind system. I do like gambling routines, which favors Aronson, but it seems like the Osterlind system is a little more flexible and easy to memorize.
  2. I would say don't worry too much about it. Pick whichever one looks like it will suit your specific needs best and know that it will do almost anything else you want as well. I use Mnemonica just because I think it looks well mixed and how relates to new deck order, though I memorized it with a different suit order because of this. But that's just what's important to me, beyond that it's mostly interchangeable with others. From what you say above, you might want to check out Redford as it is also very flexible. I would take a look at the poker deals and tell you how they look, but I seem to have misplaced my copy of Temporarily Out of Order. As I recall there are some decent ones in there.

    Just decide what you want most and don't worry about the rest. But if you plan to always use that stack and you like to try out things on your friends then you will want one that looks really well mixed. If it is for a more random audience then it won't matter if 3 of the first 5 cards are the same value...

    There were a collection of somewhat random thoughts on different stacks in this thread:

    When I learned a stack I first memorized the order of the cards but I felt that was a waste of time. Memorize which card is at which number, this is what is useful about stacks. You already know the order of the numbers. You do not need to know the order of the cards, just their numeric values.
  3. Hello! I agree with David on all matters.

    my two cents however, I think it was Ortiz that said it does not matter what stack you memorize as long as you memorize one. I would suggest learning something quite simple that does not require memorization (Si Stebbins) first and then if you like that style of magic then go ahead and memorize a stack... memorize stebbins! it does not really matter as long as you have it memorized cold.
  4. This.

    Once you have memorized a stack, I recommend you read the book "Try The Impossible" by Simon Aronson. Specifically, his effect "Four Part Harmony". This will be the closest thing to real mind-reading with cards anyone can do.

  5. My favorite book for stack effects is In Order to Amaze by Pit Hartling, conveniently reprinted recently. It contains the only thing ever to convince me I should learn to bottom deal along with plenty of other good stuff.
  6. I work with the Mnemonica stack. People are stunned when I take a shuffled deck and put it back in new deck order...blows people away!

    If you have a girlfriend or a close friend, I suggest they help you study the deck and quiz you on it. This has been a big help for me as my girlfriend was by my side as I was learning the stack.
    Attached are a few images of my practice training deck I used for many months getting the stack down.

    Whichever stack you choose I wish you the best.

    Attached Files:

    scottbaird likes this.
  7. Sorry, I just realised that I made a mistake. "Four Part Harmony" is in the Aronson Approach.
  8. In Mnemonica, Tamariz has a great way to learn the order and the number. That alone makes the book worth getting.
  9. It just depends on you, I was in your situation when I was torn between Dani Da Ortiz's stack vs Aronson. Both had gambling effects plus loads of applications; however, I really don't really look at stack based on how easy they are to memories. I look at what am going to do in the long run.

    Here is how I thought about when choosing a stack:

    1) pros and cons between each stack including effects with each
    2) what do I want to do with a mem deck
    3) do I want more magic based effects or gambling
    4) Do I prefer math or just knowing on the spot
    5 optional) As Darwin Ortiz always says to his students "Just memorize one already"

    In the end, I choose the Aronson Stack due to I had some of his material plus I had the pleasure of having lunch with him and his wife at magiclive 2018 and 19 where we talked about his card and mem deck material. As I look back on those events I don't know if I was really lucky or the "forces of FATE" were telling me something.

    Recommendation if you choose Aronson:
    Check out Simply Aronson for his wounder full application for the birthday book plot and Bound to Please for his memdeck material.
    The Top Change Man likes this.
  10. I have started using Mnemonica after using my own stack for a decade, so because of that I don't use Tamariz memorization method. I'm switching to Mnemonica mainly because of the sheer volume of tricks and effects that have been developed for it over the years.

    Juan's memorization technique would definitely work for people with a particular skill, but I just wanted to mention that if you blend mnemonics with the pegging system, it helps for much faster recall for both position -> card, and card -> position.

    For example, the first Mnemonica card is a 4C. In Derren Brown's mnemonic system (which is what I use), the 4 is an R, and so I think of the word CAR. (Club fouR) Since it is in the first position, I think of "formula 1 raceCaR" (which coincidentally also has a built in reminder of the number 4 in the word FORmula, and RACECAR has 4C in it *twice*). Now when I hear the number 1, I automatically know it's the 4C, and vice versa.

    As Juan mentions in his books though, once you memorize it and practice enough, you make the connection so fast you may eventually forget your memory aids. For that reason, I practice my hints regularly and intentionally, even though most of the time I make the associations before the aid even comes to mind. Over time it is easy to start mixing things up, since you think of cards in so many other contexts and orders. So as long as you don't forget your memory aids even after you feel you don't need them anymore, you'll retain the memdeck order indefinitely.

    It's a good idea to know a few different memorization techniques so they never get mixed up anyway. You could use Juan's method for memorizing Mnemonica, and Derren Brown's method for Sorenson's, etc etc, and never worry about accidentally muddling them up.

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