So, for International Sword Swallowers Day 2013, Ripley's raised the bar significantly, showing off the best in extreme steel slurping.
In Baltimore, Dan Meyer swallowed a sword while pulling a 3,300 Mini Cooper.
"I had blood on my sword after that little stunt," Meyer told the Huffington Post. "And I woke up with a fat lip."
After Meyers pulled the jewel-encrusted car 10 feet, fellow sword swallower Lady Diane Falk told him not to worry about the blood.
"A little blood is a good thing," she told him. "That let's everyone knows that sword swallowing is real."
Indeed, it only seems like stage magic when a performer jabs a 20+ inch blade down his or her throat. It's actually a practiced art that goes back centuries in Europe and Asia, where sword swallowing evolved simultaneously as a time-honored tradition.
Some other highlights from Sword Swallowing Day 2013:
- At the Ripley's in New York City, Todd Robbins led a large contingent featuring Natasha Veruschka, among others, who swallowed multiple swords at once.
- In Dallas, Richard Leboeuf swallowed a sword while juggling, while Shel Higgens did it while jumping rope on a unicycle.
- In Newport Beach, Twisted Trystan deep throated a power drill, running at full speed.
- Patricia Forrest stood on tippy toes, ballerina-style, performing pointe work while gobbling a blade, in Panama City Beach.
- And in Atlantic City, David Peyre-Ferry swallowed a sword while sandwiched between a bed of nails.