Shiny Metal Tiger

Experiences in Baltimore, MD


with 3 comments

You may recall that I made a list, on my birthday, of six things I needed to get done this year. Some of these were more closely related to my research (which I promise I’ll make a post explaining soon) than others, and the one discussed here definitely falls in the latter category.

  • Learn firebreathing

Why? Because it’s extremely cool. That’s the only reason. It doesn’t make a lot of sense, being rather risky and all, but it resonates with something inside me, so I’m doing it.


The first thing I did, naturally, was to do a little research online, which yielded several points:

  1. The only fuel you ever want to be using is paraffin, which has a low flash point but won’t give you cancer or explode in your face.
  2. Basically, it’s as easy as it sounds. Spray the fuel into the igniting flame, breathe fire.
  3. It’s a lot harder than it looks, and can’t be explained. Just like whistling, you just have to practice.
  4. You don’t want to do it alone, under any circumstances, and you really want to do it with an experienced firebreather to teach you.

I’m not completely stupid, so I’ll take good heed of the last point and not start on this project until I find someone who can teach me. It’ll probably be more pricey that way, and less convenient, but honestly the only way anything should be done is right. And learning it well without lightning yourself, or anything else, on fire is doing it right.

So, does anyone know a firebreather? Maybe someone that worked in a circus, or just had fun with it. Even if it’s a very peripheral relationship, anyone you can put me in touch with would be very helpful for breaching the community.

Written by Martin

2010/05/08 at 20:35

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. I happen to be a fairly experienced fire breather, although I have not done in a little while.
    This is how it goes: You pull your lips tight ,so they cover your teeth and blow hard in a kind of short burst. You kind of give the blow force with your gut. Adjust your lips till they make a slightly obscene, strong buzzing sound. Once you accomplish that and can do it at your leasure, you start practicing with water. When that is routine you try with parafin and when that works you light it.

    If I remember correctly this took a little over an hour, when I was a cup scout, for your basic burst of flame and a little over a week to get a little control of the burst.

    Fire breathing definitely looks its best when done in a very dark place, but no matter how tempting it may be, it should NEVER be done in a walk-in closet.


    2010/05/19 at 05:18

  2. Super helpful. I’d imagined it being this simple, until digging around the internet persuaded me otherwise. I’m doing the water version pretty proficiently now, will try and find some paraffin soon.


    2010/05/24 at 20:32

  3. […] It was an eight hour sample preparation (though I was only midway), so I didn’t have time to start over. I’d lost the battle against destiny (though I still intend to win the war), and instead went home (after another failed attempt to procure pure kerosene). […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: