"Torture King"

My friend "Zamora the Torture King" (Tim Cridland, formerly of the Jim Rose Circus Sideshow) is one of my inspirations for this persona—although I am the rankest of amateurs by comparison. Nevertheless, in part as research for my book Secrets of the Sideshows (2005), I have performed such feats as eating fire (taught by Pelee the Fire Goddess), dipping my hand in molten lead, and being sandwiched between two beds of nails while a cinder block was broken on my chest with a sledge hammer (all of the latter under the tutelage of another friend, David Willey—former Resident Mad Scientist of The Tonight Show). (See also Carnival Pitchman.)

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