three card monte swindle

Three Card Monte Swindle

Facts about the three card monte street swindle:

The three card monte is not a card game - it is an orchestrated scam designed to rip you off. The three card monte operator is called "the broad tosser". The name derives from a 19th century slang for the cards that were used in the three card monte swindle. At the time these cards were called "broads" because they were broad as opposed to narrow, hence the expression "broad tosser". Operating the three card monte scam is also called "tossing the brads".

You can find the three car monte swindle on the streets of any big cities around the world, or even on trains, bus terminals and any other public places. The three card monte swindle is an orchestrated scam ran by a group of people called the "three card monte mob". Each person of the three card monte mob plays a role. One is the broad tosser - as stated above, this is the person who tosses the cards. Each three card monte mob has a few shills. These are the people who draw the crowd by apparently betting their own money and even winning. Since the shills are part of the three card monte mob they are just betting the company bankroll. In addition to shills each mob has a few people on the lookout. The term for this person is "wall man". The wall man will signal the three card monte mob that the police is on their way and the game will disperse. The shills and/or the wall men can at any time take the role of the muscle man. As the name may suggest the muscle man uses his muscle as (opposed to his brain) to solve problems.

The object of the three card monte game (let's call it a "game" just for fun) is to find the odd card. The operator displays the faces of three cards. One of the three cards is odd - usually it is a red queen or a red ace. Then the operator tosses the cards face down and mixes them around. He then announces that he will pay even money to anyone who manages to find the "money card". Needless to say that no one ever does - at least not when money is at stake.

Another popular name for the three card monte swindle is "find the lady". Traditionally the odd card is a queen of a contrasting color suit. Since the player is supposed to follow the queen, the game is called "find the lady".

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