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Chemistry Lessons: oil, water, moves and math?
by Renzo Grosso


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Chemistry Lessons: oil, water, moves and math? by Renzo Grosso

Water and oil is an effect that has always fascinated me, but the principle is so simple that I think it is impossible to invent something more effective; moreover, the effect requires a secret manipulation that is impossible to replicate, if everything is expected to be done in the hands of the spectator, "on the other end of the line" (of the telephone).

I, therefore, followed a different path: to try to replicate, in the spectator, the amazement of finding the separated cards, when they were arranged alternately by his hands, in front of his eyes.

Also in this publication I propose, before the complete effects, some considerations and some examples of the mathematical mixtures useful to arrive at the final revelation:

  • move to collect "like a book"
  • oil and water with 4 red cards and 4 black cards
  • oil and water with 12 cards
  • oil and water with 18 cards

This time I propose a routine consisting of 3 effects, performed in a row, using the same deck of cards. I thought so, because, in the beginning, I wanted to create "something" for close-up at the tables. Trying to make it become an effect to be proposed on the phone was automatic.

The script that I thought of seemed, at first, a little too high-sounding (In the beginning it was chaos!); seeing, instead, videos of great Spanish cardicians (Juan Tamariz above all but, also Dani Da Ortiz, another of my idols) I decided to keep the "script" also for the telephone version trying to "push" the viewer, to give rhythm to the effect; I must say that, so far, the results are reassuring: we start slowly with the first effect and then, slowly, we try to increase the pace: since I have moved all the revelations to the final part, everything is effective and surprising.

A single deck is used, first the black cards are separated from the red ones, then 3 groups of cards are created:

  • One with 4 black cards and 4 red cards
  • One with 8 black and 8 red
  • One with 12 black and 12 red

4 groups of cards are then formed (kept separate) and it will be explained that each group will have a different manipulation. I put together 3 identical initial situations (the cards arranged alternately, one red, one black, one red, one black...), with 3 different "procedures", which create the division of the colors; to these, I have added a story that has a fascinating beginning (the three cycles of chaos) and which, as the effect evolves, must flow more and more pressing (and therefore also fast, in the commands of the performer) to arrive at three situations that remain suspended for a moment and then "explode" in a common ending: the cards, in the 3 different situations, are divided in the same way: on one side the reds, on the other the blacks!

I have tested it several times, over the phone, without a video call, to verify the effectiveness of the instructions: as in all telephone effects, you need to give simple and clear commands, trying to verify that the viewer really does what we ask; the need to try to keep a fast pace worked very well too. Try it yourself and have fun!

CREDITS: The operations described in this ebook were possible thanks to the intuitions and principles of the genius of Bob Hummer, together with the wish to try new "applications" of these principles.

1st edition 2022, PDF 24 pages.
word count: 3638 which is equivalent to 14 standard pages of text