As a practitioner in the art of sword swallowing, Deckard is ecstatic because this Thursday is the inaugural "International Sword Swallower's Day." During this day, sword swallowers are asked to perform and help spread the word of their art.
Deckard began his career as a juggler, progressing into fire eating, and the bed-of-nails trick. From there he wished to add even more to his arsenal, delving into the delectable art of sword swallowing.
"It was unpleasant to learn," admits Deckard.
He claims to have never been seriously injured, only reporting some minor bleeding.
"There are no secrets to sword swallowing, it is real, and the people actually swallow the blade," Deckard clarifies. "People often think the blade folds up, but it is actually swallowed."
Dan Meyer, president of the SSAI, deemed Feb. 28 "International Sword Swallower's Day" to coincide with February being National Swallowing Disorders month. The SSAI donates to the NSD foundation.
Most of Deckard's work is done with the Purdue University Juggling and Unicycle Club, but he wants to make one thing clear: "I treat this as an art form, not a party trick."
Like any great performer of dangerous tricks, he went on to say, "Don't try it at home."
Deckard says that a nice mix of students and faculty generally come out to the Purdue performances.
The Purdue Juggling and Unicycle Club can be found at http://web.ics.purdue.edu/~juggle