In December, I wrote about how Bedros “Spidey” Akkelian was able to hypnotize a Montreal police officer to avoid a traffic ticket and posted a video of the stunt. Since that post, I had the opportunity to interview Spidey and get more details about how he pulled off this feat.
By way of background, Spidey is a 24-year old Montreal native who practices what he calls social magic. He was a sociology major in college and uses those teachings to concentrate on magic which enhances interactions between people. He even has released a DVD called Art of Attraction which instructs on the secrets of using magic to seduce the opposite sex.
The first thing Spidey explained was that he did not hypnotize the cop. As I learned, hypnosis involves putting a person in an un-conscious trance making them easily subject to suggestion. Instead, what he used is called neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) which is the use of words to influence someone’s subconscious while they are in an awake state.
During the car stop, Spidey employed a series of pattern interrupt techniques to confuse the officer and essentially “short circuit” his brain. The first thing he does is interrupt the officer by asking in English “Do you speak English?” (rather than the French language with which the officer opened the conversation). Spidey then further derails the officer by changing the subject again asking him the location of the nearest gas station. Using hand gestures and snapping his fingers while asking these questions, he further interrupts the officer’s train of thought. The snapping coincides with his use of the word to “forget” to further distract the officer.
He then uses a classic NLP pattern interrupt technique saying “You know sometimes you get up and go do something, and you forget why you’re there. It just slips from your mind. You don’t know if you remember to forget or forget to remember.” According to Spidey, the question cannot be answered and thus puts the officer’ s mind into a bewildering loop. Spidey then says “I am glad I found you” (even thought the officer found him) to complete the confusion pattern.
Spidey explained that he is successful with these techniques 1 out of 4 times and that he even received a traffic ticket on three different prior attempts. In this case, however, the officer appears confused and lets Spidey go, seemingly forgetting why he stopped him in the first place.
So is it real? Do I believe that a professional magician was able to “burn” a stop sign in front of an officer and, then, confuse the officer with words and gestures so much that he forgot to issue him a traffic ticket? I have my doubts and would really like to see copies of traffic tickets issued in Spidey’s prior, unsuccessful attempts. With that said, I cannot say the video is a fraud either. Take a look at the video and let me know what you think?