Spirit e-Mail

by Professor Spellbinder

Effect:

"We all know about e-mail today," the Wizard lectures, "but did you know that e-mail has been used for centuries by the spirits? They called it ectoplasmic messages, but it's just plain old e-mail. They didn't have computers and telephones back then, but what they DID have was these."

Here the Wizard produces a pair of school slates. "Back in the days of old, you would have taken one of these to school to write down your lessons. Books and paper were expensive, but these could be erased and used over and over again. Here's an old message sent to me last week by Moaning Myrtle. Has anyone heard of her?"

Of course all the Harry Potter fans will recognize her as the ghost who haunts the girls' bathroom in Book #2. Her old message reads, "Meet me in stall # 3. M M," but the Wizard erases it with a damp sponge.

"This is how we cleared our e-mails back in 'da day. Now we're all set to see if any spirits are about and want to contact us by e-mail. Spirits don't like interference from humans and they prefer to leave their messages in the dark beyond reach of human hands. That's why we need two slates. I'll just number each slate."

The Wizard numbers each slate in the corner, after first brushing it off with an eraser or paper towel to verify that it is clean. He counts as he numbers, until he has shown everyone the four clean sides of all slates.One last time, the Wizard shows the slates front and back, with the numbered corners clearly showing. Then the Wizard places his chalk between slates 1 and 2 and gives them to an onlooker to hold tightly together.

"If there are any spirits about," says the Wizard, "they will sense the darkness between the slates and know it is safe to leave a message. Of course, there are no guarantees we will get any response at all. Let's take a look."

The Wizard does not touch the slates, but merely directs the person holding them to open them up. Inside is seen to be a new message from Moaning Myrtle, or whichever spirit you decide should respond. It can reveal a previously chosen (forced) secret, or just be a general message. It is nice if the message has some meaning to one of the on-lookers.

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