Monday, April 4, 2016

Escaping My Blog

Alexanderia the Great on America's Got Talent
Escaping My Blog - 
So despite my wanting to use this place as a journal of what I have been doing, I have not done so. Though there has been much that has gone on since I have last written, I have not been able to process it all and so I have put off putting it all together.

You see it is much easier to give people visual snippets via postings on Facebook or random tweets on Twitter. I have even pinned pics on Pinterest but I have not put my thoughts together in any cohesive way because honestly, it has all felt a bit disjointed.  I am just now starting to try and understand this crazy roller coaster ride I have been on.

Now I know my ride is not your normal ride for a mom of three. My path is different by my own choice. After America's Got Talent, I did not want to pack up the Winnebago and go on the road 52 weeks of the year to do my show. Though I am an escape artist, I was not looking to escape from my family.  Now please do not think this is the hearts and violin part where I say
Alexanderia the Great with family outside Radio City
Music Hall after her AGT appearance
having a family makes this so much harder for me because it doesn't.  In fact, my family made things easier for me, not harder.  If anyone made  things harder, it was me and how I processed or  didn't process my situation.  I made this a much  more difficult than it should have been.  Yes  maybe some juggling skills would have helped a  bit but this bumpy ride I have been on is really  more about ME struggling with ME.  Trying to figure out how I fit in and how I want to make a difference.  

In many ways, this escape artist has been trapped.  For me, it was not knowing how I wanted to shape my own world. I needed to better understand the powers and resources I had and how I could use them best to make me and others happy.  If we were talking purely magic that would be easy.  I am talking about who I am and what I wanted and needed to do.  This is what has kept me confined. Bound by my own set of expectations or what I felt was expectations put on me.          

As an escape artist, I have done escapes that not even Houdini himself did.  As a woman in magic (rare) and an escape artist to boot (one of the only women in the world to do these type of escapes)  I have done escapes that no one in the world, male or female has done. This is my Underwater Cell (UC) escape that combined two of Houdini's greatest escapes (his upside down strait jacket escape and his deadly Water Torture Cell ).  I did this escape on America's Got Talent live. Wrapped in 25 feet of chains and secured further by 5 padlocks, I attempt to escape all of it while locked underwater in a small 3 x 3 foot mini Water Cell Torture Cell with the lid padlocked shut by a 6th padlock.

The escape is more dangerous than either a strait jacket or the Water Torture Cell escape (the WTC itself is considered the greatest escape in magic and many consider most dangerous escape)
Poster of Harry Houdini for his Water Torture Cell
because you are combing both underwater and there is so little space to get out.  Usually the strait jacket escape itself requires a great deal of movement and time (Houdini's record was 2:37 seconds).

Alexanderia the Great doing her Underwater Cell (UC) escape
a combo strait jacket & mini Water Torture Cell escape
Alexanderia the Great upside down locked in her Underwater Cell attempting to escape a strait jacket & chains underwater in a locked bullet proof cell
Alexanderia the Great on America's Got Talent doing a first in magic
a combo strait jacket 25 feet of chains secured with 5 padlocks 
and locked underwater in a bullet proof mini Water Torture Cell she 
calls her Underwater Cell (UC) done all in full view 
Adding chains makes the process much more difficult.  How do you get the chains off or pic the locks when your hands are rendered useless wrapped around your body?  Houdini refused to do a strait jacket escape underwater as he said the material was too unpredictable in water because it clings to your body.
Alexanderia the Great aka Donna Purnell
attempting to escape a strait jacket, chains & 
6 padlocks while locked underwater in a mini
 Houdini Water Torture Cell on America's 
Got Talent
 Even if you could manage to do what was needed to escape the strait jacket, chains and the padlocks will you have enough time and breath left to find the bobby pins at the bottom of the tank and then pick the final lock to the lid of the Underwater Cell?
Alexanderia the Great trying to pick the lock of her Underwater Cell
after successfully escaping strait jacket secured with 25 feet of chains 
5 padlocks all underwater on America's Got Talent.

All of this, mind you, is done in full view unlike  Houdini who did the Water Torture Cell behind a curtain. Doing one of magic's most deadly escapes (WTC) while being in a strait jacket and chains makes it much more dangerous because the water cell is smaller (half  the size) of the  WTC leaving little room to move to escape the jacket and chains. After having to violently move around to eschew the strait jacket and chains you risk expending too much energy and  oxygen which makes picking the final lock a race against time and blackout.  Houdini used to say failure is a drowning death. Houdini's assistants used to stand by with axes to break the glass should Houdini appear to be in trouble.  In a tank made of bullet proof glass, you can see that there is no safety option of simply breaking the glass.  This is why drowning is a very real threat when I do my Underwater Cell escape.
Alexanderia the Great aka Donna Purnell gasping for air after being the first to 
successful escape a combo Strait Jacket secured with chains and padlocks 
underwater in mini Houdini Water Torture Cell in full view live on America's Got Talent
Ironically, as a former grade school teacher, I have tried to use my talents and art form to teach others to rely on themselves and not be trapped by what society thinks. Though I have done a lot, I can't help but feel guilty that I could have and should have done so much more. I had hoped after doing such an escape I would have gone further on AGT but that is show biz.  I have had some fun opportunities since then too I will expound on next time.  I hope to do more and continue to grow and do more amazing escapes.  In that way, I hope to rectify and reconcile those feelings of guilt. I will be embarking on more adventures both in escapology and in life.

Next issue, I will catch you up on what has happen and we can see what is up next for the Queen of Extreme and a Modern Day Houdini.
Go to to book a Modern Day Houdini