“There is nothing more contagious than exuberant enthusiasm.”
June 21, 2022 5:51 PM   Subscribe

John Cox has enough enthusiasm for Harry Houdini to share with everyone. For 40+ years he's been obsessed and for 20 years now has been posting deep dives, answers to FAQs (Did the Houdinis have any children?) debunking and deconstructing myths, research and source material to his blog Wild about Harry.

Via No Such Thing as a Fish podcast episode 347 [autoplaying audio]. Acknowledgement of the shout-out by John.
posted by Mitheral (7 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
How about this for a deep dive?

"I believe that I owe my tremendous strength, health and success to 'CLEAN LIVING.'" However, ....In a 1907 letter to Bess, he
(Houdini) describes a meal in Chicago that hardly sounds like the diet of a health nut:

"Had spaghetti dinner, roast beef and mashed potatoes, washed down with excellent coffee and lady fingers inserted in cream."

Potato leviatato!
posted by lalochezia at 6:06 PM on June 21, 2022 [1 favorite]

And there is nothing more dangerous than unbridled enthusiasm -- just ask Billy Mumphrey.
posted by Saxon Kane at 6:19 PM on June 21, 2022

I think any field can be made interesting if explained by someone enthusiastic about it for about five minutes.
posted by Harald74 at 11:21 PM on June 21, 2022 [2 favorites]

And Fish is an excellent podcast, I'd recommend it to just about anyone.
posted by Harald74 at 11:22 PM on June 21, 2022

I love this website - what a treat to see on MeFi! Houdini was such a fascinating guy when you dig into his life - I first got interested thanks to the wonderful Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon
posted by MarianHalcombe at 1:51 AM on June 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

In 1907 CLEAN LIVING didn’t often mean avoiding dairy - avoiding syphilis and gin, definitely, possibly avoiding sex and alcohol and tobacco. But working and eating like a successful farmer, plenty of people would have thought of that as clean.

posted by clew at 2:31 PM on June 22, 2022

This makes me think of Tony Oursler's experimental film Imponderable, which is about debunking fake seance mediums. In the film, Houdini is interviewed while floating in the Niagara river with wires attached to him...
posted by ovvl at 7:20 PM on June 22, 2022

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