And here’s a video from the national program “Right This Minute” featuring Arianna Huffington, editor in chief of Huffington Post removing a sword from my throat at the offices of Huff Post AOL in New York for World Sword Swallower’s Day 2012:
A friend from Minnesota just sent me the following Ripley’s Believe It or Not! cartoon that came out this morning, and told me I was IN IT! I didn’t have a clue that Ripley’s was even aware of it! What a total surprise!
So here’s today’s Ripley’s Believe It or Not! cartoon:
Ripley's Believe It or Not Cartoon April 8, 2011
And for those of you who hadn’t seen it, here’s the first Ripley’s Believe It or Not! cartoon I received in September 22, 2007:
Ripley's Believe It or Not cartoon Sept 22, 2007
Ripley’s cartoons are syndicated in newspapers in 43 countries around the world. The original cartoon got me a mention and photo in the Ripley’s Believe It or Not book, and in a Ripley’s card game!
As for me, this is the best surprise birthday present I could ask for!
Well, it’s over… this chapter is done, but what an adventure it was…
Special thanks to all of you who were involved in putting together the Swords For Africa charity benefit the past several months and the resulting show at Emens Auditorium on Friday night. It was an incredible journey to help support this mission to Africa, and I feel privileged to have been a part of it. Long walk, part of gift…
I don’t know which was more rewarding - to be involved in the show itself on Friday night, or to be along on the journey for the past several months! Both were a hugely humbling and rewarding process, and I know I have been changed and grown over the past several weeks and months as a result of it! Thank you ALL for everything you have done along the way, and for those of you who came and supported us in the show!
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Swords for Africa, it was a charity benefit to raise awareness and funding for Joy In The Harvest Missions to Tanzania Africa. Many people gave generously of their time and resources, and many lives were impacted on Friday night, and many more will be when the mission team travels to Africa in June!
Our theme was
DO the IMPOSSIBLE - CHANGE the WORLD!
This recurring theme in each of our lives came through in our program, and is what Joy in the Harvest is looking to do in their mission to Africa!
Special guests included
Rupert Boneham, America’s Favorite Survivor, winner of $1 Million and founder of Rupert’s Kids
Hunter Smith, the NFL’s TOP Punter (10 years with the Colts and last year with the Redskins), and great singer, songwriter, communicator, and a dear brother! Looking forward to doing more with you, Hunter!
Danny Frasier, the World’s Smallest Elvis (with no legs, he stands 2′ 10″, my good buddy who inspires me and I look up to!)
Jim Goldman, the Armless Wonder, an incredible Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, incredible sportsman, and dear friend
Moses Lanham, the Backward Feet Man, and another dear friend (whose car was TOTALLED on the way to the show!)
100 Feet of Steel to be Swallowed at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museums Worldwide
HARTSELLE, AL – Imagine sliding a steel sword down your throat! Now imagine 25 sword swallowers swallowing over 100 feet of solid steel down their throats! That’s just one of many unbelievable sword swallowing stunts in the works for the 4th Annual World Sword Swallowers Day at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! locations worldwide on February 27, 2010!
Sword Swallowers Association International (SSAI) President Dan Meyer proclaimed the 4th annual “World Sword Swallower’s Day” for the last Saturday in February, “National Swallowing Disorders Month”, with stunts occuring throughout the month culminating with World Sword Swallower’s Day on February 27. World Sword Swallower’s Day is co-sponsored by Ripley Entertainment, who with SSAI, is inviting sword swallowers around the world to put on incredible sword swallowing demonstrations at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! locations worldwide.
I just found out about several recent and upcoming interviews this week!
FOOD NETWORK: UNWRAPPED
If you’ve been watching FOOD NETWORK this week, you may have seen me on recent episodes of “Unwrapped” called “Food Magic” that has been airing all this past week! The episode is based on “Food Magic” and the premise of me swallowing a “sword sandwich” of 5 swords.
What you might NOT know is that this episode was filmed exactly 1 month after my worst accident when I punctured my stomach while swallowing those same 5 swords at once! I almost died from the injury, which left me with pleurisy - fluid around the lungs and heart - and kept me in bed and unable to eat for a full month!
When I got up that morning to film this episode of Food Network at Timberloft Steak House in Gordonsville, TN, I was VERY concerned that my esophagus might be so tight that I might not be able to swallow a single sword, much less the finale sword sandwich of 5 swords! Let me know if you see the episode on TV or if you can tell that I had not swallowed a sword (much less FOOD!) in a whole month! (And look for a rare cameo of my wife Lisa!)
According to the Food Network website, this episode CW1411 is scheduled to air on the Food Network on these dates:
Thurs, Oct 01, 2009 11:30 PM ET/PT
Friday, Oct 02, 2009 2:30 AM ET/PT
Weds, Nov 25, 2009 11:30 PM ET/PT
If you miss it on TV, here’s a shortened version of it:
RIPLEY RADIO ODDCAST
Last week I had the honor of doing a fun interview with Ripley’s Believe It or Not Radio for their ODDCAST that will start airing Monday, Sept 28. You can listen for free HERE
Monday, Sept 28, 2009
Click here to listen to Ripley Radio Oddcast
JOURNAL DE MONTREAL
A few weeks ago, I was interviewed for an article in the Science supplement of the Journal de Montréal in Canada, the most important French-language daily in Québec (2 million+ readership). The article just ran and apparently was such a big hit that there was a lot of positive feedback and a number of schools ordered multiple copies to use in their classrooms!
Let me know if you happen to see it (and can translate it from the French!)
IG NOBEL AWARDS CEREMONY at HARVARD UNIVERSITY
On Wednesday, I will be flying back to Boston to again have the honor of opening the 2009 Ig Nobel Awards Ceremony at Harvard University in Cambridge, MA on Thursday, October 1. What an honor! This year, it looks like we will have 9 Nobel Laureate Scientists there with us at this year’s awards - You’ll have to watch to see how many of them we can get to remove the sword from my throat this year!
If you missed my acceptance speech at the 2007 Ig Nobels Awards Ceremony, here it is:
And here is the Wall Street Journal’s coverage of last year’s Ig Nobels Ceremony:
If you can’t make it in person, you can tune in live online on Thursday, Oct 1 at 7:15pm EASTERN TIME, or you can listen to the rebroadcast on NPR radio the day after Thanksgiving!
This past Saturday, several folks wrote and texted to let me know they heard me on an interview on NPR’s “Splendid Table” a gourmet cooking show! Dr. Brian Witcombe, my co-author of our BMJ medical paper on sword swallowing injuries, gave a nice description of one of my injuries.
THE LOBBYIST at WALDORF COLLEGE
Today I did a fun interview with my alma-mater, the Waldorf College Lobbyist and the article will run next week just before the big Waldorf College Homecoming Celebration on Saturday and the Distinguished Service Awards Ceremony on Sunday! Let me know if you’re going to be coming to the Homecoming or the Distinguished Service Awards Ceremony in Forest City, Iowa, as I’m looking forward to seeing you there!
Saturday, Oct 03, 2009 8:00 PM CT Q&A Demo
Sunday, Oct 04, 2009 11:30 AM CT Awards Luncheon
CIRQUE ELOIZE “La Vie est un Cirque” on QUEBEC TV5
And here is the footage of my appearance on “La Vie est un Cirque” with Cirque Eloize in Montreal that aired on TV5 in Quebec to 6.6 million viewers, and will be airing throughout all the French-speaking countries on TV5 to 180 million viewers! Watch as Canadian TV/Film star and host Patrice Belanger pulls a sword from my throat, and then WHIPS a sword from my throat!
Had lots of fun opportunities to perform in lots of great and unique places such as Ripley’s Believe It or Not, Wellcome Trust, Cambridge, Oxford and Imperial College on the Ig Nobel Tour during National Science Week, got to meet lots of cool and interesting people, and came home with lots of great memories! Here are just a few:
Wellcome Trust Foundation - Got to do two fun shows at the world famous Wellcome Trust Collection museum on Feb 26 entitled “Inexplicable Acts” and a special panel and demonstration on the “History of Sideshow” on Feb 28.
Ripley’s Believe It or Not London Piccadilly Circus - Stopped traffic on Piccadilly Circus Square by doing a press conference and sword swallowing demonstration for the press and public on “International Sword Swallower’s Awareness Day” on Saturday, February 28 that was filmed by BBC and the Telegraph. They even filmed a video of it for inclusion in various Ripley’s museums around the world, the event will end up in a Ripley’s Believe It or Not cartoon syndicated around the world, and one of my swords is now on display there at the Ripley’s Odditorium in London! (If you’re ever there, go visit it and say “hi” for me!)
The Magic Circle - This is a very elite 100-year old secret club for magicians that very few non-magicians and non-Brits get to step foot inside the doors of! I was honored to be asked to speak to the Young Magicians group, and the audience of 10-18 year-olds were fixed so intently on the edge of their seats that you could hear a pin drop! Sadly, while I was in London, the Magic Circle’s past president, Ali Kabah passed away… (not from seeing my show).
Club Ivy - This is London’s TOP A-list spot where all the celebrities hang out, including Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, Pers Morgan, and now… Dan Meyer! Was asked to perform a command performance and had fun making people’s heads spin!
Cambridge University - Was invited to lecture and perform for the Triple Helix of Cambridge. During this performance had my third “falling ovation” in the UK when an audience member passed out in the middle of the show!
Oxford University - Had a wonderful time returning to Oxford for another Ig Nobel lecture and performance and delicious meal afterwards!
Newcastle Centre for Life - Was great to be back to Newcastle again this year. Got to hang out with Cirque du Soleil as we all stayed at the same hotel. Performance that evening at the Centre for Life science museum was for a sold-out crowd, and the response was wonderful! Newcastle article
Portsmouth University - Fun show down on this port town on the southern coast. Dean Ann Ridley joined the “Lancelot Club” by pulling the sword out, and Andy Thorpe joined the “Indiana Jones Club” by reluctantly whiping the sword out of my throat.
Dean Ann Ridley of Portsmouth University reacts to the show
Hewlett Packard, Bristol - Another fun show at the Hewlett Packard headquarters.
Stonehenge - What a unique experience to be able to swallow a sword at Stonehenge! Got lots of strange looks, but it was fun!
Over 50 Feet of Solid Steel to be swallowed at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museums Worldwide
HARTSELLE, AL (SSAI) – At 2:28 pm on February 28, 2009, Sword Swallowers around the world will attempt to swallow over 600 inches of steel swords at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museums worldwide for International Sword Swallowers Awareness Day. That’s over 50 feet of solid steel! Believe It or Not!
Sword Swallowers Association International (SSAI) President Dan Meyer proclaimed the third annual “International Sword Swallowers Awareness Day” to raise awareness of sword swallowers around the world. The day is co-sponsored by Ripley Entertainment, who together with SSAI, is inviting SSAI member sword swallowers to put on sword swallowing demonstrations at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! locations around the world.