The Confidence to Lap

I've mentioned once or twice lately that I've been watching Bill Malone's video series Malone Meets Marlo, but I wanted to call out one of the sleights that he uses in several of the tricks. It's not one that's unique to Malone or Marlo, in fact a lot of magicians do it. It's lapping.

The name and concept go pretty much hand-in-hand; it's when something is put into your lap. I know of dozens of routines, likely more but let's round down, that require the use of lapping, several of which also require bringing the card(s) back into play. I sit at a desk for work all day, so be sure when I say that I've practiced it my fair share. And yet, I've never once performed it.

I'm titling this post "The Confidence to Lap", because like many sleights, it takes a certain level of confidence to pull this one off. If your cover or misdirection isn't great, you'll flash. If the audience is to your sides or behind you, you'll flash. If you stand up, cards will fall everywhere -- even after the trick is over! And yet, it's such a versatile ability that offers a lot of different possibilities.

In my situation, I really do have a bunch of routines I've practiced, and even still practice, that require lapping cards. These are routines I want to perform, but I haven't. Unfortunately, it's not always confidence that is the issue. For me, it's situational.

When I'm performing for family at home, we're either on the couch just hanging out, or at the dining room table and they're all around. In neither of these situations can I take advantage of lapping. Well, technically at the table I could, but I would have to direct everyone to be across from me, which would yield suspicion.

At friends' houses, whenever I'm asked to show something off, we're always standing in a group. The reason I can't lap in these situations should be fairly obvious. But, it's a good thing I practice palming more than lapping! Performing at my work office -- when I actually visit there once every few months -- is the same; standing around in a group.

Even at Magifest, when I would be at a table that is suitable for lapping cards, I'd be fully surrounded on all sides. In this specific scenario, maybe it would've been okay to flash to the magicians behind me or to the sides. They're there to enjoy magic and learn new things, so maybe they'd be empathetic with the situation and know that I'm only performing for the spectators in front of me. Regardless, I didn't dare try to find out.

It may sound odd, but this is the one sleight that I'm really itching to use during a performance. Normally, at least the way I think about it, most people would want to try out a new routine, or some new story or patter. I... want to try to lap a card during a performance. Now that I'm thinking about it, maybe I can treat it like the classic force and just do it during other tricks that don't require it. Well, as long as it doesn't mess up the actual trick.

Share This!

Previous Post Next Post