The Conjurer's Omelette

“Now, how about that omelette?” The magician’s assistant briskly placed the tray on the table. On the tray was a single egg cup, holding a duck egg. There was a great hush upon the audience. The great hall was about to witness the concluding act. “Now, ladies and gentlemen,” said the magician, “I will present to you, in conclusion, the famous Indian trick invented by the natives of the Andamans.” “Will you, sir,” he continued turning toward the boy in the front row, “will you kindly help me crack this egg.” The boy nodded and smiled. There was a sound of gentle smashing and the contents of the egg were now flat in the tray. “And now, sir, will you kindly pass me that piece of enchanted glass? Thank you.” The boy’s face beamed as he handed the piece to the magician. On the magician’s signal, his assistant drew open the window curtains, and the great hall had a bright stream of sunlight. The glass piece sparkled as the magician held it high. “You see, ladies and gentlemen, there is no deception; there is nothing in the space between the tray and the glass.” The audience were assuming a puzzled expression as they saw the egg transform into an omelette! Amid a glorious burst of applause, the magician drew himself to his full height, and with a stern look at his audience, he concluded - “Please remember that your homework on reflection and refraction is due next week.” The boy in the front row was at his desk even after the class had dispersed. His eyes held the look of fascination.

Written on November 14, 2017