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Chongqing man stuns press by conjuring up 30,000 RMB

Yang Degui, hard at work borrowing money

For the past two days, the Chongqing Economic Times has been reporting breathlessly about a local man who, when furnished with a basin of water and three towels, can make money appear as if from nowhere:

The name of this marvelous performer is Yang Degui (杨德贵). He is forty-seven years old and comes from the town of Xintian in Wanzhou District. Yesterday morning, at roughly eleven o'clock, several dozen city residents waiting on the 19th floor of the Xiya Hotel, as they had been instructed. After Yang arrived, one local went to buy a ceramic basin and three towels, and a staff member set up an empty table. Before the performance, reporters and the other locals in attendance inspected the basin and towels, and a reporter took out four newspapers and conducted a thorough examination of the table. When nothing out of the ordinary was discovered, Yang took off his shirt, and handed the money in his trousers to a spectator for temporary safekeeping.

Under the supervision of the camera and several dozen city residents, Yang tied a red rope to the window, closed the curtains, and half-closed his eyes as he murmured something. At 11:40, an experienced local extended his hand into the basin, and then Yang asked someone to drop a ring of keys into the basin. Then the performance began.

This reporter witnessed in person, before 50 seconds had passed, a local fishing out 200 RMB, to gasps from the audience. At 11:45, a reporter for this paper sat down across from Yang and put his hand into the basin. Yang told him to press on the basin bottom. A hush fell over the crowd. After murmuring a few words, Yang put a hand into the basin, and then forcefully clapped the reporter's hand and told him to feel around in the water. Seventy-two seconds later, the reporter felt pieces of paper brush against his thumb. He pulled them out: two 100-RMB notes.

The article, written by a senior writer for the paper with the assistance of an intern, reports that other spectators followed suit, pulling out sums of up to 8,300 RMB at a time. Yang also produced Euros, US dollars, coins, and ration tickets. The secret? It might have something to do with alcohol:

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