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David Blain and others of his type.

  1. Nov 27, 2003 #1
    Some of you must have seen his random specials. Card tricks are one thing, but he takes it to extreme levels of insanity.

    For those of you who haven't seen both magic specials (one is remarkably underplayed on tv), here are some things he's done.

    Had people write their name on a card, insert it into the deck, tap the deck and have the card appear on top.

    Taken a cigarette and shoved it through a quarter

    Asked someone for their baseball cap, turned it upside down, reached into the fabric fold around the perimeter and pulled out a snake.

    Ripped the head off of a chicken.

    Levitate leaves and cards above his hands.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 27, 2003 #2
    I've seen him levitate himself, and he said how he did it, but never objects. I saw some magician do it out side a movie theater with a dollar, it was neat. (He also picked your pocket in front of everyone, and you never knew 'til he was handing back your stuff at the end .)
    I saw the 'cigarette/quarter thing' and the 'name on card in deck' too. I also saw him bite a quarter and then very quickly spit the piece back towards the quarter and it reattached itself. I have no idea how he does it.
    How could he have done that thing with the snake? Was it the usual street magic? If so, how'd he conceal a snake as he walked down a street? They usually wiggle all over...
    What is magical about ripping the head off a chicken? Or did he reattach it? Was it rubber or living? If living, wow.
  4. Nov 27, 2003 #3
    The levitation of cards/leaves he did in a very underplayed special where he went to hatti. He went into the jungle where there were primitive tribes of people with no knowledge of the outside world or english at all. He tried to show them card tricks but they didn't get it, so he put a leaf in his hand, and it started to float above his hand while rotating. I don't remember it well enough to say whether it was a hectic rotation or one that looked like it was supported on a central axis, but i do remember him putting his other hand all aroud it to show there weren't strings. The people in the village loved him, when he went to a more urban area, people were scared of him and hateful towards him because of his evil magic powers.

    To clarify with the snake thing, it was just a random guy on the street who he asked(though of course, it could have been set up), and the snake didn't slide out of his sleve, you saw the snake being pulled out as if it were hidden in there. The weird thing is that the fabric of the hat was completely flat from where the snake materialized, as if it had no width until it left the hat or something.

    And the chicken, it was a real chicken, a live chicken, he ripped its head off, scared some people really badly, all the while holding the head in one hand and the lifeless body in another (no blood anywhere), then, after maybe 15 or 20 seconds, reattached the head and let the chicken down to walk around.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2003
  5. Nov 27, 2003 #4

    that site claims to sell a book which will tell you how to do a bunch of david's things. Of the things they advertise the book reveals, I can do 3

    Coughing up a card trick (you tell someone to choose a card, they put it in the deck, you shuffle it, pull out a card, asking if it's theirs, but it has to be wrong. You keep pulling out wrong cards, then start coughing and cough up the proper card, which was in your mouth)

    Psychic Dice: A spectator is asked to drop 3 dice into a glass of water, raise the glass over their head and count the total of the dice on the bottom. The spectator then sets the glass back down, the bartender dips his finger in the water, rubs his finger on his forehead and after a little concentrating, announces the total of the dice on the bottom to the spectators amazement.

    Twisting Arm Illusion: Get down on all fours, put your right hand on the ground with your fingers facing left, have someone rotate your hand clockwise and tell them to keep going until you've rotated it over 360 degrees.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2003
  6. Nov 27, 2003 #5
    I'm quite impressed by the snake and chicken tricks, let me guess, he did the chicken one outside the country.
    Now that chicken one really makes me wonder, because I have never seen nor heard of a trick where the animal is hurt and restored. I have heard that when a chicken is decapitated, it's body still moves around, possibly capable of walking, because of the shock to the neurons I guess. But how could you tear the head off a chicken without it moving and without blood and then reattach it and have it start walking around?
    Assuming he was in Hati when he did this for obvious reasons and because it is my understanding that they not only have a lot of chickens but also a lot of voodoo, did he just grab this chicken as it walked by and do this? Or did he bring it? I can see if maybe he had some highly sophisticated chickenbot he could do the trick, but that hardly seems worth the money.
    Is there any chance that there is something I don't know about chicken physiology that for some weird reason allows this to happen to them and they can somehow easily restore the connections between their head and body? (As unlikely as that is.)
    Because of the way the trick was done, was there any way it could be that he never really did remove the head, that in fact he did something to make it act dead (like hit a pressure point or something) while hiding it's head in ruffled feathers and showing off a fake head? That seems most likely of all...
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2003
  7. Nov 27, 2003 #6
    If he did the chicken thing outside of the USA, it was presented to a pair of women who spoke english with a totally american accent in a fairly urban area. I'd more quickly believe that i was created as a product of a chinese lab experiment gone horribly wrong than belive that chickens would magically not bleed when decapitated and be able to reaccept their heads. He clearly showed the body and it looked as if it was just teh neck and where the head would be, a total covering of featers, so your guess about hitting a nerve or something to make the chicken kind of recoil it's head and cover it with feathers is probabally the closest to being accurate.

    The ripping off the chickens head thing is actually the first recorded act of magic, as david explains to the person he shows teh trick to.
  8. Nov 27, 2003 #7
    whats just as amazing as his card tricks is his will when it comes to the extreme stunts he pulls like not eating for a month or something and standing on top of a 70 ft pole for two days and jumping off at the end of it.
  9. Nov 28, 2003 #8
    As to the not eating, I think that was really a more extreme human feat, nothing that a fit person who has trained for a while couldn't do, though it was very dangerous.
    I didn't hear about the 70 foot pole thing. How wide was it? he didn't sleep did he? Did it fall over when he jumped, or did it then become apparent that it was fixed to the ground? Wasn't he injured when he landed? Was someone/s there the whole two days to be sure? Where was this, and when? How'd he get up there? Or is that part of the magic too, that someone was just walking down a street (a rarly used one) and just found him there on top of it, and then told everyone about it so they came and saw? (I very much doubt that .)
  10. Nov 28, 2003 #9
    It was only like 1 to 3 ft in diameter and he stood on it for 60 hours without eating or sleeping. When it was time to finally come down he jumped into a small pile of cardboard boxes,and yes the pole was fixed to ground. I don't think he was injured but he looked like he was wasted when came down. This whole stunt was done in the middle of New York and I think it might of been on tv. One of his other stunts was when he went in a solid block of ice for 24 hours too.
  11. Nov 28, 2003 #10
    Actually, he was in the ice for over 2 days.
  12. Nov 29, 2003 #11
    Actually now that I think of it the pole wasn't held to the ground by anything but the street itself.
  13. Nov 29, 2003 #12
    Well, if I didn't need much sleep (could make up for it before hand) then I think balancing on a three foot wide pole wouldn't be too hard, then again I may not be able to correctly invision how long 70 feet is. I saw blips of him in ice on the TV now and then, that was neat.
  14. Nov 29, 2003 #13
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