THIS is a very pretty method of varying the deal, and carries certain advantages with it. The deck is held
in exactly the same manner as described for bottom dealing. The single-handed top deal is made by pushing over the top card with the thumb in the usual manner, and then with a swing of the hand towards the player, the card is released by the thumb and slides off the deck over the table in the direction indicated. The single-handed bottom deal is made by first pushing over the top card as usual, then instead of pushing out the bottom card, as in the two-handed deal, it is sprung back a little by the third finger tip, and then suddenly sprung forward and out as the hand is swung in the direction of the player.
This bottom deal is really more deceptive than where the two hands are employed, as it appears so open, and the action is completely hidden by the natural swing of the hand necessarily made towards the player, to cause the card to slide in the proper direction. The action of the wrist is a little varied as the cards are dealt to the left, opposite or to the right; and the impetus and direction given to each card must be nicely calculated to make the deal appear graceful. Unless the cards fall pretty fairly before each player, it would seem very awkward indeed. The swing, and the wrist action, for dealing the top and bottom cards, are just about the same.
Single and double handed top and bottom card dealing can be nicely combined, and has an advantage over the exclusive use of the one or the other. If the bottom cards are intended for, say, the third player from the dealer, he can deal the first two top cards single-handed, and then bring up the right hand and continue the rest of the round double-handed, giving the third player the bottom card as the hands are first brought together. Each round should be made in the same uniform manner. The advantage in this procedure is, that when the bottom card is wanted the dealer's hands are separated possibly eight or ten inches, and the movement required to bring them together covers up and gives time for the action of the left hand in getting the top and bottom cards in position. The finished expert can deal the bottom cards at will, under any circumstances, without a possibility of detection; but it is our desire to show the most favorable conditions under which the ruse can be employed. The single and double-handed deal is quite frequently used by players who know absolutely nothing about advantages. It looks pretty, the movements are natural, and the change of pace causes no suspicion.
When dealing Stud Poker, or turning a trump, the average player takes off the cards that are to be faced, by inverting the right hand, and seizing them with the fingers on top and thumb under, thereby turning the cards before they completely leave the left hand. This must not be attempted if the bottom card is to be dealt or turned trump. The inverted position of the hand makes it more difficult to get the bottom card out noiselessly. The cards should be taken in the usual manner by the right hand, and turned the instant they are quite free of the deck.
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AS THE term indicates, second dealing is the process of dealing the second card from the top, and it is
employed almost exclusively in connection with marked cards. It is obvious that the dealer will possess a very great advantage by being enabled to reserve for himself, or an ally, any desirable cards as they appear at the top. He need not bother about acquiring skill at blind shuffling, cutting stocking, or any of the other hundred and one ruses known to the profession.
The deck is held by the left hand much the same as described for bottom dealing, the tip of the thumb being a little over the end of the top card. This position enables the thumb to come in contact with the second card by pushing the top card a trifle downwards. To deal, the left thumb pushes the two cards over the side nearly together, the top card perhaps a little in advance and the second card showing a little above it at the end. The right hand seizes the second card by the exposed corner, the right thumb barely touching the edge, but the right second finger is well under the second card and helps to get it out by an upward
pressure as the left thumb draws back the top card. (See Fig. 26.) Then the left thumb again comes in contact with the second card at the upper edge. The third finger tip prevents more than two cards from being pushed over the side. The top card continues to move forward and back as the seconds are dealt, but the rapidity of the backward movement prevents the detection of the action. Properly executed, the appearance of the deal is perfectly regular. An expert can run the whole deck with the utmost rapidity, and still retain the top card.
Another method of second dealing is to hold the cards loosely in the left hand, the left thumb pushing forward several at a time, each a little in advance of the other. As the right hand comes forward, the top card is drawn back and the second dealt. The left thumb uses some pressure in pushing the cards forward, but draws back the top card very lightly so as to have the second card protruding. (See Fig. 27.) The first method is decidedly the better, as it gives greater control of the cards, and there is less liability of the right hand seizing more than one.
There is a knack in seizing the second card. The second finger of the right hand comes in contact with it before the top card is drawn back, and gives it
a slight pressure upwards, thus helping to prevent it going back with the top card. The right thumb may actually touch the top card as it is drawn back and the second dealt. The whole action of drawing back the top and dealing the second card takes place at the same instant.
To become an adept at second dealing is as difficult a task as can be given in card handling, but once acquired, like many other arts, it is as easy as habit. To the player who uses marked cards this accomplishment is the whole thing, but without readers the time spent in acquiring the skill is wasted as far as advantage playing is concerned. Opportunities for introducing prepared cards are rare, and the process of marking during a game, by crease, crimp, or inking, is slow and detectable. However, with "readers,"
"strippers," or any kind of prepared cards the clever professional who values his reputation will have nothing to do.