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[Confessions of a Showgirl]

Confessions of a Showgirl: The tale of the Zig-Zag Girl

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Maren Wade

We all know the tale of the Zig-Zag Girl. Wait, you don’t? I thought I was the only one.

Well, I did some research. It’s similar to the magic trick where the woman is sawed in half, except in this trick, she is known as the Zig-Zag Girl. This special showgirl is placed in an upright cabinet. Only her face, hands and left foot are seen through designated slots. The magician inserts two large metal blades into the midsection, dividing the girl into three parts. He then slides out the midsection of the cabinet, disconnecting the middle of the girl from the rest of her!

I wonder why they call her the Zig-Zag Girl.

At the end of the magic trick, the girl’s midsection is slid back in place, the blades are removed and the Zig-Zag Girl steps out magically in one piece.

Okay, I have a confession to make: I’m not supposed to reveal this but I’m going to let you in on a little secret: It’s not magic. I present to you the tale of the Zig-Zag Girl.

Rumor has it that back in the day there was a certain showgirl assisting a student magician in magic school. Let’s call this magician ... Harry Potter. The name of the school can be ... Hogwarts.

So Harry started out with his suspenseful monologue. “And for my next trick, I bring to you this incredible jaw-dropping illusion. You won’t believe your eyes. Behold (dramatic pause), the Zig-Zag Girl.”

The stagehands wheeled out the special Zig-Zag box. (That phrase just doesn’t get old.) The beautiful showgirl stepped inside.

The magician inserted the metal blades into the cabinet and through the Zig-Zag Girl. The audience watched with fascination. The magician pulled away the middle section, creating a huge empty hole where the showgirl’s abdomen should be. The audience gasped. The budding illusionist began to push the middle section back in order to reveal his assistant was unharmed.

In this case, “unharmed” is sort of a loose term.

The stagehands had apparently jolted the device so the edges were misaligned. As a result, the middle piece couldn’t go back into its original position. This showgirl was stuck in a box missing every organ in her midsection! It’s a miracle she was still alive. (I thought getting stuck in a birthday cake was bad. At least I was in one piece.)

To make matters worse, she had to smile through the whole thing! Would you find it easy to smile when you looked down and saw your foot, but everything in between was missing?

Apparently, there is no way to get a Zig-Zag Girl out of a Zig-Zag when she is in the Zig-Zag position. Are you still with me?

Without giving the entire trick away, the Zig-Zag Girl was contorted in an unnatural position. I can’t disclose to you what position it was, but it’s banned in 29 states. Okay, I have another confession to make. I just made that up. But the point is, it’s a really uncomfortable position. She had about as much space in her Zig-Zag box as she would have had in a straitjacket.

The magician had to wheel her offstage while trapped in the device. The Zig-Zag Girl was frantic. It felt as if she was being hauled off in her metal straitjacket to an insane asylum, release date unknown. If you ask me, she was the real Prisoner of Azkaban.

As if things couldn’t get any worse, she had a new level of terror to confront. The magician had to swing a hammer at her midsection multiple times! Well, the hammer was hitting the misaligned device, but it’s never a good thing to have someone hammering away at your pelvis. (That may have been the wrong choice of words.)

After a few forceful strokes with his tool, the student magician properly aligned the pieces together, and the Zig-Zag Girl regained her freedom.

It was at that moment, the Zig-Zag Girl vowed never to deal with magic again. I tried to reach her for comment but she had disappeared.

The magician, on the other hand, eventually graduated from Hogwarts. It only took a few epic wizard wars, a Sorcerer’s Stone, some Orders to sort out in Phoenix, and a Deathly Hallow here and there.

Okay, I have one more confession to make. His name is Chris James not Harry Potter. He may or may not have studied at Hogwarts.

But here’s the real twist: He’s a Muggle! And not just any Muggle but a Muggle who performed for the Royal Family 10 times!

You can now find him in Las Vegas performing in the Naked Magicians. Not sure where he hides the Goblet of Fire in that show, but it’s definitely worth checking out.

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