Easy Card Trick: "Oops"

This is a very easy card trick that requires little to no expertise. A great card trick for beginners, but will amaze all of your friends nonetheless!

This is the trick


Step 1: The Set-up

For this trick, you will obviously need a deck of playing cards. It can be any deck, as long as it has 52 cards in it (after taking out the two jokers). You are looking for the stiffest cards you can find, so it is often good to show this trick with a fresh deck, but this is completely not required at all. Just the stiffer, the better.

Introduce yourself, and show your audience that you are using a full, regulation deck that has been shuffled.

Step 2: "Pick a Card"

When your audience is fully aware that there is nothing fishy going on with the deck, ask one of them to draw a card from it and memorize it.

As they are looking at it, cut the deck in half, then into fourths of relatively equal size, and position them in a line.

Step 3: Lose the Card

Now its time to get that card back into the deck. I would suggest now you start to get more comfortable with talking while you are doing the following steps. It takes the audience's senses off your hands and on to what you are saying.

Ask the person that drew the card to place it ontop of any one of the four piles. It does not matter what pile they place it on, just keep an eye on that pile. Once the card has been placed, grab any two of the three piles (that dont have that card ontop of it) and shuffle the two together, bridge style. Then set the combined stack to the side. Then grab the two remaining piles and shuffle them together, making sure that the chosen card stays ontop of the combined stack. In this case, the chosen card is the Two of Clubs. (see picture two as a reference)

A little trick that I do is keep the thumb of the hand holding the unimportant pile as slack as possible, and the thumb of the hand holding the important pile as taught agaisnt the edge of the cards as possible, obviously not so much as it is noticeable. Once you have two stacks remaining, grab the other with your free hand and shuffle the two stacks back together, again making sure the chosen card lands ontop of the newly formed deck.

Step 4: Re-shuffle

At this point your audience probably suspects that shuffling job just a little bit. So tell your audience that you think it would be better if you shuffled one more time, just to make sure that the pesky card is nice and lost in the deck. Seperate the deck into two halves, then cut each half with one hand, and switch them to the opposite side of the line as you lay them down (refer to the picture). This kind of confuses them. Remember to keep talking.

Now repeat step 3, making sure you keep the chosen card ontop of all shuffled stacks, trying to be quick about shuffling, and remaining as descrete as possible about your dirty little shuffling technique. Once your finishing the shuffling process, sometimes I find it good to mock your shuffling and suggest inconspicuously, and slightly cynical that you are lucky shuffling isn't a crucual part in this trick. Make sure its after you shuffle, or that might get them to look closer at how exactly you are shuffling the cards.

One final tip about the shuffling technique:
Try and switch hands with the stack that has the card ontop of it, just so it doesn't look like one side of the shuffle is always landing ontop of the other.

Step 5: Now for the Magic

Now that you have gotten this far, its time to work your "magic". Grab the deck in one hand and explain to the audience that after the extensive shuffling, the card is deep and lost within the deck.
Tell them that it would do no good to go searching for it in the deck, so your best option is to move it to the top (or something along those lines).

So snap, wave your hand, tap the top of the deck, or say a magic word (whatever your magical gesture preference), and claim that the card is now ontop of the deck.

Step 6: Pulling the Card(s)

Now its time for the hardest part of the trick: discretely getting two cards off the top of the deck instead of one. Now you might find a better way to do this, but so far the method that has worked for me is pause right after you say the card has returned to the top of the deck, and simultaneously place your free hand on the back of the deck. Then recite something like, "What, you dont believe me?" as you use your thumb to count the top two cards and 'bite' them in place. After you have the two cards on the top of the deck, gently push the tip of your thumb in toward the gap and let the second card slide up flush against the top card. (refer to the first two pictures as needed)

Then, as you finish saying your piece about how the audience doesn't trust you, quickly grip the top two cards together and whip them out and around, trying to keep them as lined up as possible with each other so that it looks like one card. (picture 3 shows the incorrect way to hold the two cards; picture 4 shows the correct way to keep the two cards flush) Laugh and tell them you have successfully found the card that they chose.

Step 7: The Flip

Once they give you a good evil eye and a demeaning laugh of failure, look at the card and state something like, "Oops, Im a little rusty". Now is the fun part. Grab the two cards by their side and rest them inbetween the middle finger and thumb, keeping them perfectly lined up. Give them a load of bull about re-teleporting the card back or something, then give the card a few preliminary bends, then flip the shit out of it.

Here is how to do the flip in detail (use pictures as a guide):
Grab the two cards as shown in the first picture. Only about an eighth of an inch of your middle finger and thumb should be above the cards. Gently switch the pressure applied by your fingers down on the bottom card, which will make the top card slightly loose. To do this, subtly roll your fingers in and under so they sort of taper down and in on the bottom card and up and out on the top card. This way, when you bend the card upward, it should raise VERY SLIGHTLY off the bottom card (picture two is overly dramaticized to show you how the two cards seperate in the bend). Then bend it a couple times, which sort of slowly raises the top card loose. Do this until the top card flips off. If done correctly, it will flip about a half a foot to a foot away, and you should still be holding the bottom card, which is the original card that was chosen.
Pictures 3, 4, and 5 show the three stages of the card flip.

Step 8: GLOAT!

Once the audience sees the card that they chose, if done correctly, it will look like you magically teleported it from the deck right to your hand, knocking the other card out of the picture.

Oh and due to the difficulty of the card flip, the next step has several alternatives that work just as well.

Step 9: Alternatives to 'The Flip'

These are a few of the alternatives to the flip, listed from most difficult to least, all being less difficult, though, than the flip. Check out the video if you have trouble understanding the pictures.

The Slide:
Grip the two cards flush with the thumb on one side, and the middle and ring finger on the other. Apply force with your thumb in and up so that the edge of the card "pops" off of your ring and middle finger. This quickly collapses the bottom card flat against the right and middle finger, with the thumb holding it in place, while simultaneously popping the top card off. View pictures one and two to understand better.

The Slap:
Grasp the bottom of the cards between the thumb and the index finger, slightly firm, but slightly loose. Play around with the method to get a feel for how tight or loose a grip you need. But simply slap the top part of the top card, and it should fly off, leaving the bottom card remaining within your grip. Pictures three through five illustrate this.

The Toss:
Grip the cards as shown in picture seven, against your first three fingers, held in place by your thumb. Then, throw the cards downward, moving your thumb away and keeping the cards in place by slightly squeezing the sides between your index and ring finger. The centripital force should keep the back card against your fingers and force the front card to slide off. After the front card has plummetted to the ground, move your thumb back over infront of the card to keep it from falling as your arm stops. Refer to pictures six through eight to see this process

This video should help



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    7 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    cool trick! there are also simple magic tricks which are completely easy. I have a bunch of them in my FREE simple magic tricks video instructions at http://www.simple-magic-tricks.org


    11 years ago on Step 5

    Its like, "Don't give me the finger!!!" J/K


    11 years ago on Introduction

    you could also do the card snap. (that's probably not what it's called) you hold the cards sideways with your middle and pointer finger in front and your thumb behind. Then you snap your fingers, when you snap the top card will be dragged back with your middle finger and the bottom card will be showing. the trick is to keep your pointer finger a 1/4 of an inch away from the top card when you snap. You should also flick the card with your left hand while you snap to distract them.

    1 reply