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The other side of the curtain

The Magician and the Crossword Puzzle [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Dec 9, 2010 - 13 comments

Learned Pigs and Fireproof Women

Ricky Jay had a TV special in 1989 - Learned Pigs and Fireproof Women - based on the book of the same name, which featured magic, juggling, amazing feats, stunts, and performances, including a musical performance on wine glasses, a human calculator who could determine cube-routes of numbers in her head, and an antique acrobatic clockwork doll. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3). (Previously and previously and previouslier)
posted by twoleftfeet on Jul 29, 2010 - 18 comments

What If Assassins Are Chasing You And All You Have Is A Deck Of Cards?

Ricky Jay's legendary book, "Cards As Weapons," is out of print. Used copies are expensive. Luckily, you can read it here. (The book contains some NSFW content.) I've you're new to Ricky Jay, start here.
posted by grumblebee on Jun 17, 2010 - 39 comments

You're gonna put somebody's eye out with that deuce.

Card Throwing. Can ordinary playing cards be used as deadly weapons? Well, no, that myth was already busted in 2004 (but it inspired some self-confessed nerds to build their own card-throwing machines and stage a contest). Even though it's not lethal, card throwing (also known as card shooting and card scaling) is still an interesting and multifaceted skill. Check out some YouTube videos of card throwing champs Ricky Jay and Rick Smith Jr., as well as other efforts.
posted by amyms on Jan 15, 2010 - 17 comments

The Man Who Fooled Houdini

Dai Vernon chased down card cheats and swindlers to make him a better magician. It paid off. One of the best magicians of the twentieth century, Dai first made his name in 1919 when he became The Man Who Fooled Houdini. Watch his version of the classic routines the cups and balls and the linking rings. Vernon also mentored many magicians throughout his life, including Ricky Jay. Vernon died at the age of 98 after years as the Magician in Residence at Hollywood's Magic Castle.
posted by Bookhouse on May 22, 2009 - 25 comments

The coolest man alive.

Ricky Jay wants to play cards. Place your bets. [more inside]
posted by Bookhouse on Oct 3, 2007 - 38 comments

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