Relearing Zarrow…

the Zarrow Shuffle

Sometimes it feels like I’m perpetually cleaning my office. Yesterday I came across the DVD The Zarrow Shuffle by Herb Zarrow. I watched the very beginning and realized that I learned to do this wrong. What I’m doing looks fine, but they first way the Herb demonstrates looks way better!

When I learned to do the shuffle, it was in the context of the trick Triumph. For the Zarrow Shuffle, I slip cut one card. I used that method for other tricks as a false shuffle. If you slip cut a block, it’s soo much more deceptive than with a single card. Also Herb’s way of jogging the cards is much more deceptive than pushing them out with your index fingers.

I’m glad I came across this, but now I’ve got a challenge ahead of me. I’ve got to undo 25+ years of the way that I’ve been doing it. The changes are fairly minor, so hopefully it won’t be too much of a pain.

Recently I did this unlearning and relearning process with how I get a card injogged. I figured out a way when I was a kid by reading something wrong and it worked for me. However I relearned to do it Jerry Andrus‘s way because it looks better.

Don’t be afraid to unlearn thing if there’s a new (to you) way of doing it that looks or works better than what you were doing before. I know it’s a pain to spend time basically learning to do something you can already do, but I think it’s the little things like that that make someone an artist.

Not Everything Is Easy…

Every time I hear magicians complain that tricks are too hard, it drives me nuts. Why wouldn’t you try to learn something difficult? If you are an artist, you should be pushing yourself to learn to do difficult techniques. Here’s what Kennedy thinks about it: A great example is I’ve been working on a false … Continue reading “Not Everything Is Easy…”

Every time I hear magicians complain that tricks are too hard, it drives me nuts. Why wouldn’t you try to learn something difficult? If you are an artist, you should be pushing yourself to learn to do difficult techniques.


Here’s what Kennedy thinks about it:



A great example is I’ve been working on a false shuffle for about a year now. It’s not quite right, and I’m still practicing it. Should I give up?


No, and here’s why: It’s the best looking false shuffle I have ever seen. Sure I could stick to something that looks good enough, and that’s fine, but why wouldn’t I go all the way, make my art the best it can be? I do it because that’s what separates me from 80% of other magicians, and I do it because I take pride in my work.


Go out and learn to do something difficult!