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Season 3 Episode 8

Nothing Up My Sleeve

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Aired Unknown Oct 11, 1997 on AMC

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    • (Ballinger, romancing Hilary in the Green Room, explains the "Nine of Spades" trick)
      Ballinger: My miracle with the nine of spades is based solely on the oddity that if you multiply any number by nine and add the result repeatedly until you have only a single digit the number will always be nine. 9 x 2 is 18, 1 and 8 equals nine; 9 x 3 is 27, 2 and 7 equal nine, and so on- (as he speaks he has been pouring a glass of water for both himself and Hilary from a pitcher)-to infinity.
      Hilary: But we didn't multiply anything by nine, we multiplied by three.
      Ballinger: But I had you multiply by three twice, which is the same as multiplying by nine once. (He sits back down, placing his glass on the table, but holding the other. As he continues speaking, he rubs his hand around the second glass so we cannot see the contents.) The rest of the trick was simply stage dressing and misdirection. The audience is thinking, "There really is a thing as magic." and all the while I'm thinking, "There really is such a thing as math." (Whereupon he offers her the glass, now filled with what looks like wine.)

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