Okay, shrimpo's write-up is really exciting - especially if you enjoy the occasional sarcastic "wow" and people laughing at you, not your trick.

If you really want to shock people, I have a much more effecting method of making a flame appear in your hand. Now, be warned, this is very dangerous, but where are you ever going to get in life - or more importantly, at parties - unless you take a few risks?

For starters, there are a few things you'll need:
  • As with shrimpo's method, you'll need a lighter. I recommend a jet or a similar lighter. Not because it will light better, but because it looks really cool.
  • You'll also need some flamable liquid, such as petroleum (or gasoline to Americans). Only about a cup is required.
  • Next comes some painkillers. You might opt for something hardcore like Morpheine, or simply for asprin or paracetemol.

Okay, here's how it's done:

  • Cover your hand in the liquid, in a place where no one can see you (so they don't know how it's done).
  • Either gather some people around you to shock, or approach the most frail looking person at the party. I find the latter much more satisfying.
  • Now comes the hard part, as inconspicuously as possible, light your hand with the lighter.
  • Now, you must laugh like a maniac1 and throw your hand in the air.

The frail person will scream uncontrolably, possibly rocking back and forth chanting. The group will be shocked, and clap you on. You are now the centre of attention, congratulations.

1. You may find laughing "like a maniac" difficult whilst your flesh is melting, this is what the painkillers are for.

And, uh, of course it's a joke, fools...