“What do you consider your biggest accomplishment?” asked Ricky Boone’s friend Patty. “That I’m still here,” responded Ricky, “I accidentally set my head on fire in front of thousands of people, I lived through that. I had a heart attack in front of thousands of people, I lived through that. I was supposed to have died ten years ago, the doctors said I had to stop performing and I have done more shows in last ten years than in the previous ten. If you feel that you have a purpose to live for, I think you can.”
Ricky Boone, magician extraordinaire who was born with a rare bone disease in which his skeletal structure went haywire. Ricky said, “comedy was a way of getting out of the real world, the real world where people see me as someone disabled, and someone to pity. If I can make that person laugh their butts off, they have no time to feel sorry for me.”
Ricky remembers first learning magic from a teacher at school. “He pulled up on a Harley, wearing a black leather jacket and proceeded to show us card tricks. I was hooked.” When the teacher later became the school principal, he would call Ricky into his office over the intercom to where they would exchange magic and card tricks. “I had a pretty good reputation around school because everyone thought I was always in trouble,” Ricky said.
After working at an office for several years, he followed his dream to open a magic shop and dedicate more time to performing. With the economy struggling as it is, owning a magic shop is not easy, but Ricky still walks into his shop some mornings and says, “wow, this is mine.” On a cold spring day in Asheville, North Carolina, my fellow Mobile East team members, Nina Porzucki, Sara Esrick, and I visited Ricky’s shop, Magic Central where he welcomed us and showed a few of his tricks.