Tricky tricks

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A few simple tricks that can be tried at home over the weekend with friends or family. We have tried to lay down the tricks for all seasons & reasons to experiment & explode.


  • Cut a piece of tissue paper in to a square of 1.5cm side. Lay a pin across its middle and gently float the paper with the pin in a vessel full of water. When the tissue paper is wet, take a toothpick and push the corners of the paper down carefully so that the paper sinks. The pin will still float. This is due to the surface tension of the water which forms a skin. If you look carefully from the water level, you will be able to see the surface of water bend slightly under the weight of the pin.


  • Ever tried setting a sugar cube on fire. Place a sugar cube on a plate and set fire to it with a match. It is impossible to do so. Now rub a little ash on one side of the sugar cube and try again. This time it catches fire and burns steadily. The ash causes the sugar to ignite thought it is not combustible by itself.


  • Roll a sheet of paper into a tube with diameter 2-3cm. With both eyes open look through the tube with your right eye while holding the palm of your left hand next to the far end of the tube. You seem to be looking through a hole in your left hand.


  • Can you puncture a potato with a drinking straw? You can with a little bit of practice. Hold one end of a potato with your left hand and a drinking straw in your right. Let your forefinger cover the tip of the straw and hold the straw with your thumb, middle finger and ring finger. Strike the potato with the straw quickly with as much force as you can. Make sure that the straw is perpendicular to the surface when it hits the potato. Otherwise the straw will crumple. The column of air trapped in the straw makes it rigid and after successful spearing you will find a thin cylinder of potato inside the straw. Once you get the knack you can puncture the potato every time.


  • Enter the digits 12345679 in the calculator. Note that you have not entered 8.Now multiply it by any of the first 8 multiples of 9(9, 18, 27, 36, 45, 54, 63, 72& 81). Note the answer. What do you find? Your answer is always a recurring digit which represents the multiple you keyed in. This works only for the multiples mentioned here.


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