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The Sign of Five Telephone Test
by Dominic Twose

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The Sign of Five Telephone Test by Dominic Twose

One of the cleverest telephone tricks ever invented. You do not need a special phone or app. You only need an assistant, friend or colleague on the other end of the line to make this miracle possible.

"I am fascinated by such thinking - your method is extremely devious. Congratulations on a great idea." - Paul Daniels

"It's incredible!" - Stephen Fry

"This telephone test of yours is the cleverest idea that I have encountered in years." - Peter Duffie


You tell the spectator of the importance of character in reaching decisions. You explain that recent studies have shown that a couple of key elements describe a person's character.

  • Their background - their family, the number of brothers and sisters they had; whether they moved home as a child.
  • Their astrological sign.
  • Their physical appearance - typified by their hair.
  • Their attitude to style - demonstrated by their choice of personal objects such as their shoes and phone.
You give a chosen spectator the name and phone number of your assistant. Only then do you give them a pack of card to shuffle, and ask them to select one from the face up spread. They phone your assistant and talk about themselves, their shoe size, the colour of their hair, the type of phone they have.

"Very interesting" says your assistant when they are halfway through giving the description, "I think I can see the type of person you are. It wouldn't surprise me if you chose the five of diamonds".


Now, get this:

  • The pack of cards can be borrowed.
  • The card is not forced.
  • The spectator calls your assistant; you do not touch the phone. You do not speak to your assistant.
  • No risky 'time codes' are employed.
  • No complicated memory work involved.
  • You will be able to do this within ten minutes of reading the instructions.
  • No electronics to breakdown.
  • No cumbersome equipment to carry around.
Your assistant's job could not be easier, thanks to the ground-breaking principle employed.

Perhaps the most astonishing part of this trick is this:

Your assistant really does deduce the name of the selected card by listening to the spectator's shoe size, star sign, and phone type!

You will love the effect. You will love the principle. You will use this - again and again.

"That's a beautiful telephone card trick." - Martin Gardner

"I certainly did enjoy the method. It is elegant, ingenious and natural." - Roy Walton

  • Effect
  • The Principle
  • Secret
  • The Presentation
  • The Assistant's Job
  • The Spectator
  • Alternative Handling
  • The Background
  • The Key
  • Decoder

1st digital edition 2017, 16 pages.
word count: 2376 which is equivalent to 9 standard pages of text