How to Balance a Fork and Spoon on a Toothpick


This is a simple and amazing bar trick that allows you to balance a fork and spoon on a toothpick. Two forks also works well.

It will turn any dull conversation into a “WTF?!” moment where people start pulling out cameras. No training or special items required — you can learn it in about 30 seconds.

It might be as inane as my video on how to peel hard-boiled eggs without peeling them. Then again, that video got more than 2 million views, so at least a few of you seem to enjoy sleight-of-hand and general tomfoolery as much as I do.

Be careful with the glasses!

Elsewhere on the Interwebs:
Tim Ferriss – 3 Tips for Would-Be Dancers: From 1st Class to World-Class in 6 Months

Posted on: May 26, 2009.

Watch The Tim Ferriss Experiment, the new #1-rated TV show with "the world's best human guinea pig" (Newsweek), Tim Ferriss. It's Mythbusters meets Jackass. Shot and edited by the Emmy-award winning team behind Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations and Parts Unknown. Here's the trailer.

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84 comments on “How to Balance a Fork and Spoon on a Toothpick

  1. Sweet post. Loving your book im reading it for the first time in Belize and im about to travel Central and South America. Thanks bro for your inspiration and information


  2. I learned this trick a while back from one of the best and most accessible science textbooks ever written, “Conceptual Physics” by Paul Hewitt. A great book, by the way, for dunderheaded liberal arts majors like me who want to get a practical understanding of how the universe works.


  3. I ordered the audio version and I absolutely cannot take the guy who is reading it. Am I the only one with this problem? His voice is just abrasive to me and I’m having a hard time listening. Is there any way to exchange it for the book? Did you listen to it? I wish it would have been your voice.

    Warmest Regards,
    Rosemary Hamilton


  4. Nice one.
    Btw, are you by any chance into magic? Cause there are some amazing things you could do with a napkin or a coin or a deck of cards although with cards it’s a bit more advanced -)
    Love your blog, Tim.


  5. The value/inaneness/awesomeness of the trick depends on the person you’re with. Even the best tricks may come off as dumb/awkward if the person/people you’re with aren’t the right type to appreciate the trick.


  6. Tim! This is grand. A girl showed me this at dinner once and I’ve been meaning to replicate it.

    Also – cheers for mentioning “On Writing Well” in the Le Muir interview. The book has been an awesome resource on my quest from terrible writer to readable writer. (*Note to other readers – it’s a book by William Zinsser and its’ rad.)

    @Kaiser – This should grab a girls attention well – won’t make her fall in love with you – but puts you on the right path. I’ve had good luck recently with making business cards disappear. A few searches on You Tube will show you how.


  7. a jajaja

    I’ve been doing this trick as a child. I don’t remember who taught me though. There are other tricks too. Some harder, like balancing a coca-cola bottle on the tip of another bottle.


  8. Ha! Cool. I learned this trick waiting out a storm on the Azores near the end of an Atlantic crossing. Good relaxation for sea sick tired people. (Don’t try this on a boat.)


  9. Tim,

    I am enjoy that filling the void doesn’t always have to be 100% seriousness. In fact richness for me is a wonderful conversation over a home cooked meal. Thanks for sharing what you enjoy.



  10. Good trick, Tim, I’ve been doing one like this for 17 years, leaving bartenders, wait staff, and dinner guests befuddled. If you want to get really creative and leave people absolutely amazed, you can use two toothpicks, balancing one with the forks on the very tip of another toothpick that’s wedged into a salt or pepper shaker. I’ll record “this” version and post a comment back here with a short video. Originally learned from Bill Nye the Science Guy (thank you PBS).



  11. When I was working graveyards in the restaurant we would do kind of the same thing with two forks, two toothpicks and a salt shaker. Looks really neat when you got one tooth pick balanced on another.