Friday, June 29, 2007

Ripley's Believe It or Not!!!

I have been away for awhile--lots of new things to tell you--some I will post soon, others will have to wait. I've received more than a few emails from people asking--where have you been? Are you dead? More on that . . . the dead thing I mean, later. That in itself is a story. Again, lots to say and will be making more frequent posts updating everyone as to what's happening.

I was notified recently that my work as an escape artist is being profiled in the new Ripley's Believe it or Not!!! The Remarkable Revealed in stores on August 7.

These are annual hardcover compendiums put out by Ripley's with its usual fare of the unusual and the bizarre. They are large books about 8 1/2 x 11 size.

I feel sort of honored since I use to read the small bantam paperbacks of Ripley's back in the day-- when I attended grade school and we would go to the library every Wednesday morning. One of the books had a picture on its cover of a penny with a needle going through it. In small print down at the bottom right corner of the cover it said: "to learn how to do this turn to page 41." So, over on page 41 there was a diagram that showed how it could be done. You were to get two wooden blocks of wood that were longer than the needle. Placing these on the workbench standing upright, you would then get your penny and place each edge on one side of the block of wood. So the center of the penny would not be resting on the wood, only the edges. Then you were to get a cork and push the needle into the cork until the point started to come through the bottom. Then, you would set the cork on the penny. Taking a hammer (and here was the hard part) you would, with one straight downward blow strike the cork which would push the needle straight through the penny. When I first saw the diagram, I was intrigued. That night at home on my father's workbench, I broke alot of needles until I learned that you had to strike the cork squarely and sharply with the hammer. There was no second chance--otherwise the needle would bend and then break. Well, after about an hour and many attempts --it worked--exactly as the book had mentioned. I was so excited--I kept it for years--as an oddity I had created from the pages of Ripley's Believe It or Not!!!

Back to their annual book--The Remarkable Revealed--I have not seen the article done on me and am not sure what the layout is--I don't know if it is a full page spread or one column. I was told there are some pictures and a bio detailing my work on both English and American television. Mention is made of my escape from a locked safe under thirty feet of water and of my many escapes from handcuffs.

So, if you find yourself near a bookstore after August 7, run in and check it out. You don't even have to buy it (unless you want to, of course). But, I get no royalties for this.

Also, I may be performing escapes as part of the book launch--and may be doing some media around the country--possibly in the Chicago area. As soon as I know, I will post the information here. So, stay tuned.