The Untold Truth Of David Blaine

David Blaine is primarily, a street magician — you know, those types who walk up to people on the streets, perform a magic trick, and then walk away? Yeah, he's one of those, but he also does tons of Vegas shows and TV specials and the like. He's a big-time magician, but as with most huge celebrities, there's tons of things you don't know about him. Like, did you know he's an alien from another planet? Okay, no, that's probably not true but you can believe that, right? Look at those eyes. David Blaine doesn't look human.

Anyway, that's not true (probably) but what's definitely true is ...

David Blaine had a weird childhood

Despite the name "David Blaine" somehow being the perfect match of normal and terrifyingly otherworldly — much like the man himself — it's not actually his birth name. He was born David Blaine White, which we actually think sounds more like a magician's name, but hey, what do we know? He lived with his mother and his older brother, never even meeting his father, and started doing magic when he was incredibly young, long before killing a bird with his mind.

There are a bunch of conflicting stories about how he became interested in magic. One says he became obsessed with magic after performing a trick for a neighbor with a pack of Tarot cards his grandmother gave him, because of course he started doing magic with Tarot cards. Another claims he became obsessed after seeing a magician in the subway. All we know for sure is that, one day, he took up magic and never stopped.

He got his first special by impressing execs with magic

When David Blaine wanted to do his first special he was living on his friend's couch (as you do when your profession involves startling people with cards), and decided he didn't really dig that. So, without an interview, he went into the ABC headquarters and used magic to get a meeting with the president of ABC.

After getting the president's attention, he gathered the execs, and Blaine showed them all some cut-together footage of him doing random magic at people on the streets. That wasn't enough, though: he also did an amazing live trick. The group was at the top of a tall building, and David Blaine performed a card trick. At the end, he revealed the card the execs were thinking of was ... outside the building, stuck to the window.

All of them were incredibly impressed and decided to give him a special. It just goes to show: if you want something, all you have to do is cobble together a VHS and do card tricks.

David Blaine started street magic

Now, as mentioned, David Blaine played a videotape for the executives. It was a film he had made himself, just randomly harassing people on the street until they agree to watch. Thing is, David Blaine basically started this trend. Before him, when you thought of magic, you were picturing more of a cape-and-theatre type with a rabbit cutting a woman in half. But then, David Blaine came along and started levitating, changing magic forever, all with a dumb little VHS tape he created while staying at his friend's house.

Of course, that wasn't what was shown. No, with the VHS he got a million dollars to fund a special. With his friends, and a small amount of equipment, he drove around in a van performing magic in various streets at different cities, before putting it all together and throwing it on television. This was an idea inspired by, of all shows, COPS. Yep, the "bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do" show. Apparently, what they were going to do was perform magic at you on camera.

Most of his tricks are incredibly easy

The thing about David Blaine? Some of his tricks aren't all that hard. Actually ... that's true of almost all his tricks. See, most of the things he does are beginner's magic, and once his first video came out, magicians were in an uproar because he was getting accolades for performing incredibly simple tricks schoolchildren do for fun. But here's the thing: it doesn't matter how simple something is, it matters how it's done. For instance, most pop songs are pretty easy if you can play an instrument, but they're still awesome to listen to. David Blaine's magic is the same thing. You can learn all his moves, but you probably can't do it the way he does. If you could, you'd be astounding TV execs by floating around their boardroom, instead of reading this on the toilet.

He always carries cards

Picture the cheesiest stereotype you can imagine about a magician. Okay, now open your eyes. Is it about cards? David Blaine apparently think so, as he literally always walks around with a pack of cards. He does not, at any point, go without cards, both because even a millionaire magician can still be a total dorkshoes, and because then he couldn't just randomly saunter over to people and do a card trick to amaze them.

Like, there's the one time he pulled his motorcycle over to show a group of construction workers a magic trick, because his life is literally a bad commercial for motorcycle insurance. Basically, he went up to the construction workers because they were all looking at his motorcycle. Was he worried they would jump him and so he was just like, "Hey, look, magic?" Perhaps, because as soon as he was done, he "dazzles" them and then sped away.

We hope this is how Blaine gets out of being mugged, signing autographs, and literally anything else he doesn't want to do. A card trick and then running.

He doesn't even really do all his stunts

Yep — at one point, David Blaine literally hung upside-down for sixty hours straight, just to prove he could. Thing is, that's just, like, impossible. No, seriously, it really is physically impossible to do without dying of blood rush followed by blood loss. Also, dehydration, because have you ever tried to drink upside-down? It's impossible.

So how did he do it? Simple! He didn't. He had to come down every so often (as in, for ten minutes every hour) to get checked out, take a break, and drink some water. Honestly? We could probably hang upside-down for sixty hours if it just meant, "At some point in these sixty hours, be hanging upside down." We're not alone in thinking this — when one person found out Blaine's "secret," their exact response was that they could do it too. We don't know what David Blaine said when he heard that, but we imagine it involved staring at them sullenly, and then flashing them a palm with an eye inscribed on it. While mumbling.

David Blaine had the weirdest interview ever

Imagine you're a sullen kid sitting in front of your parents. They're asking you all sorts of questions and you don't know the answer or don't want to answer. You're pretty stoned. No matter what your parents say, you give tiny little monosyllabic answers. At one point, you raise your hand with an eye scrawled on it. What's that, your parents ask. "Protection," you say. Protection from what, they ask. You say, "Protection from death."

Here's the thing. All of that happened, except instead of some moody teenager in their parents' living room, it was David Blaine on a morning talk show, and it is seriously the weirdest and creepiest thing that has ever existed. He really tells the host he has an eye drawn on his hand for protection. The host, gamely trying to make it through the interview, trying to figure out if this silent, moody character is part of Blaine's act or if he's just blazed. He ends the interview by saying, "Different!" Poor guy.

David Blaine once killed a pigeon with his mind

He did! Kind of! David Blaine did this trick when he was much shorter, and much younger, as in school-age young. According to Blaine, he was sitting in class, watching a pigeon on a stoop. He told his friends to look at it, and said that he was going to stop its heart. Then the pigeon fell over, seemingly dead.

Now, when asked about it by Time Out New York Magazine, Blaine said he didn't actually kill the pigeon, and that it didn't die at all. It merely seemed dead, despite everybody around him clearly seeing it as a pigeon that was no more. It had ceased to be. It was an ex-pigeon. He further explained that he doesn't create the moment, but simply waits for it. This seems to suggest he knew the pigeon was going to fall and said something creepy at just the right moment to seem like a powerful creature from the dark beyond, but honestly, we're not sure which is creepier at this point.

The New England Journal of Medicine did a study on him

Much of David Blaine's tricks are so simple, even a 5-year-old could learn them. But then there's stuff he does that defies explanation. Of course, many of those things aren't tricks at all. Like, for instance, how is going without eating for a month-and-a-half magic? Simple answer: it's not! He just starved himself for a month-and-a-half. Doesn't that seem kinda hard and ridiculous and impossible to do without dying? Yeah, it does.

Science agrees, because once he got done fasting for forty-four days, the New England Journal of Medicine did a paper on him. It deals with the boring minutiae of how a body that has been purged of its contents goes back to becoming, you know, a garbage disposal. You can read the results of the report if you're interested but it basically says, "Starving yourself makes you not hungry but then you get hungry. Also your body gets all weird if you don't feed it."

That's neat and all, but it doesn't explain how starving yourself for so long that doctors want to look at you counts as magic. Look, it's impressive, but you know what's more impressive than not eating for 44 days? Magic! How about you do some more of that?

Donald Trump helped him get his start

Back before David Blaine made his name, he was just a performer of tricks who went to parties and showed off, because that's literally the only acceptable way for magic to be performed, ever. One of the people there owned a hotel and David asked him if, in the future, he could use the land to do a trick. The man agreed, without asking for any money, and that man was Donald J. Trump.

Despite all the current controversy, David Blaine hasn't changed his mind about Trump, saying Trump was nice to him when he was a kid, when Trump had literally no reason to do so. In addition, he theorized that America elected him because we like reality shows, and Trump's basically that, but in president form.

Years later, Donald Trump actually made good on his promise, letting Blaine use the land at one of his Vegas hotels for free. Blaine worked with him a few more times, including the time he hung upside-down for 60 hours.

He almost made a movie about his life ... with Robert De Niro

Depending on who you are, Robert De Niro is the guy from the gangster movies or the guy from the Meet the Parents movies. In the late '90s, he was set to make a movie about David Blaine's life, because, c'mon — a father he never met, starting magic with tarot cards, living on his friend's couch before getting a million bucks to drive around and perform his art, and then revolutionized it? That is one hell of a movie.

The film was to be called Trick Monkey, and it would've starred De Niro as a master magician and — get this — renowned bear hugger Leonardo DiCaprio was to play his apprentice! How cool would that movie be?

Sadly, it seems like it's nothing but a pipe dream at this point. It's been in Development Hell so long that, well, to get it made now would take a miracle ... or magic

David Blaine and the snow plow

Okay, how come this wasn't on one of his specials? This is way more impressive than starving yourself!

New York City, despite getting snow pretty consistently, has not yet figured out how to deal with it, so sometimes the Big Apple just shrugs its shoulders and shuts down. However, some things don't wait for winter to pass, like babies. Yep, David Blaine's wife went into labor while a blizzard was raging outside.

With most everything shut down — because, you know, massive amounts of snow — David Blaine did the only sensible thing: get a snowplow. He ran outside and flagged one down and got them to drive toward the hospital. Thankfully, because this is a David Blaine story and his life is almost literally a made-for-TV movie, the couple arrived just in time, and everything turned out fine for them and Baby.