Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Malini the Magician, the San Fran Police and Lemons

I came across this great Malini article and illustration in the May 18, 1912 issue of  the San Francisco Call, Volume 111, Number 170. The stories about Malini are legendary and this story illustrates why that is. I heard a similar story about Alexander Hermann making coins appear in eggs. It doesn't really matter where the money appears - the public resist the lure of lucre in groceries.

Detectives Start on New Chase! Seek for Money Inside Lemons
New Methods of Amassing Wealth Shown Before the Police Commissioners

San Francisco's detective force has been taught two new and easy ways of getting money, one by taking it out of other people's hands, and the other by buying lemons for five cents at a fruit stand and then extracting the $10 bills growing inside the fruit.

These new methods of high finance were demonstrated before the detectives, the board of police commissioners, Judge Shortall, Chief of Police White and others by Malini, the magician, yesterday afternoon in the hall of Justice.

Malini proved that it was all very simple, showing Detectives Pat Cronan and Fred Biermann that a plain clothes man could gather up plenty of easy money without disturbance or discovery. For example, he rolled up a $10 bill and placed it in Cronan's hand.

Cronan closed his hand on the money firmly, to show that it couldn't he taken away. "That's a cinch," said Malini, and Cronan unclasped his hands to find a crumpled piece of newspaper instead of the bill. "All you have to do is to buy a lemon for a nickle, and here you are." continued the Instructor in applied finance, pulling a lemon out of Cronan's pocket, cutting it open, and showing the bill which Cronan had previously closed his hand on.

The rest of the demonstration was shown to an empty house. The detectives had all left in a hurry and were out at the fruit stands in Kearny street buying lemons.

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