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www.geocities.com/Baja/4954/ This is how Spudster entertained himself this past weekend, trawling through sites like Internet Magic and challenging the online wizard to do things like figure out what Pokemon character he was thinking about. The wizard can also tell you who you were in a past life and amaze you with all kinds of virtual card tricks. Sadistspud is now unleashing the wizard on his readers.

homepage.ntlworld.com/paethon (Ssshhhh. While my mindful readers are stuck at Internet Magic, the rest of you can zap over to Card Flourishes and actually learn some real magic, or at least how to create illusions by manipulating cards and coins, by downloading video lessons.)

www.allmagic.com The truly disturbed will appreciate that All Magic posts a new top 100 magic sites list every Monday. And if that excites you, you’ll be happy to know that the list is only a fraction of the content this portal seems to conjure out of nothing.

eyetricks.com Only if you do NOT prize your eyesight — or mind walking around cross-eyed. Some truly wicked optical illusions that aren’t recommended at all and especially not if you’ve spent eight hours in front of your monitor at work. Have the Visine at the ready.

www.trickmagic.com I think someone at this site was actually holding the Spudster’s hand during his stay, guiding him through different tricks step-by-step and explaining not only the sleight-of-hand but also the illusion that my audience would see if I had any hand-eye coordination at all.

www.angelfire.com/tx/johnnyeck/magic.html This is a text-only posting of an article from several years ago describing what many magic buffs consider the greatest illusion of all time. It was a variation of the saw-a-woman-in-half routine and it has been talked about ever since it was performed in 1937.

www.ancestry.com/library/view/columns/eastman/2261.asp#10 This article by ancestry.com columnist Dick Eastman lays out perhaps the greatest unsolved mystery in all of magicdom — the true identity of a gambler who in 1902 wrote “Artifice, Ruse and Subterfuge at the Card Table: A Treatise on the Science and and Art of Manipulating Cards.” It was the first book to articulate the techniques of cheating at poker and is still in print today because it remains the foremost authority on the subject. An eBay bidder who recently paid $10,259 for a first-edition copy touched off the most recent search for the author who hid behind the pseudonym S.W. Erdnase.

www.martinka.com Martinka is a storied magic shop dating back to 1860s Germany that, judging from dated accounts, must have been the Disneyland of its day. In the 1870s it moved to a small village across the Atlantic known as New York, providing magicians with the latest tricks of their trade and a stage on which to try out new illusions. Once owned by Harry Houdini, it more recently fell upon hard times only to be rescued by the Internet from a cruel disappearing act. It’s a young site and is building itself into an online museum and auctioneer of memorabilia and antique magic tricks.