March 24, 1874 - October 31, 1926
In High School most of my peers were into Roger Staubach or Muhammed Ali. A precious few enjoyed talking about McGovern or Hitchcock. I studied Lenny Bruce, Humphrey Bogart, and Harry Houdini. A friend of mine's father helped us build a trunk. I lined it with old bed sheets dyed black. It had a hidden escape hatch. We performed the METAMORPHOSIS TRUNK ESCAPE for the PTA. Another time, I had my history teacher tie me up in ropes, from which I escaped, and I also got out of handcuffs in front of the drama class without using fakes. When I brought the trunk home and stored it our garage, my father demanded I throw it out because it looked like a coffin.
Besides his talent as a magician/escape artist, what attracted me to Houdini was his incredibly blatant self-promotion, his genius at showmanship. Through years of working dime museums, carnivals and vaudeville, Houdini refined his skills, learned the business of showbusiness, and forged the legend we remember. He was bigger than Barnum.
Harry Houdini - wiki