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" My parents were intelligent and encouraging, but at the same time, they were displeased at me becoming a wandering troubadour and wire walker. "
" My first walk illegally at 20 years old was between the towers of Notre Dame. "
" I keep saying I am an auto-didact, but I have a lot of outside influences. One I could cite is juggler Francis Brunn, who was the first man to throw ten rings in the air; he was really an amazing juggler who showed onstage the quest for perfection. "
" I walk on the wire; it's my profession, and there are no two high wire walks alike. "
" Truly, from a very early age, I started distancing myself from other kids, not out of willingness, but just out of the nature of my energy. I liked to do things solely, and I already had a taste of the quest for perfection, which is unusual in a little kid. "
" My parents wanted me to have an honorable profession and not to be a jester. "
" The wire is a safe place for me to be. The street is not. Life is not. It's a rigorous and simple path. It's straight. You don't have meanders like, you know, on the ground, in life. "
" There is a child inside me that wants to come out and do something to surprise all the adults. "
" When art in general, and film in particular, succeeds is when it pulls you away onto a voyage. Then it's a good film. "
" Right after my Twin Towers walk, I was approached by hundreds of people, and I said no to all the offers. I could have become a millionaire overnight, obviously, but I said no, and I continue to be uninterested. "
" Faith is what replaces doubt in my dictionary. "
" How could I share with you how I felt when two towers that I loved, two pieces of steel and glass and concrete fell down, when actually they took with them thousands of human lives? That is the actual tragedy. But those towers were almost human for me. I was in love with them, and that's why I married them with a tight rope. "
" Wire-walking in performance is one thing - I never fell, of course. If I had, I wouldn't be here talking about it. "
" Talking about theater, actually, I built a little barn in upstate New York, and I call it 'the smallest theater in the world,' but it has a mini stage and a red velvet curtain. "
" On one day of the week, I relax - which is not true, I work furiously on other things. 'Relax' is not a word to me. "
" If I had been born in the circus, my parents would have pushed me on that little high wire at four years old. That's when the body is most limber to learn those acrobatics. "
" On the high wire, within months, I'm able to master all the tricks they do in the circus, except I am not satisfied. "
" I love or hate things straight away. I like to go directly to action to see the result. I think I must be difficult, but at the same time, it's not for me to say. "
" It's very easy to walk on a wire if you spend a whole lifetime practicing for it. "
" For me, since I have a life wish, not a death wish, for me, I was not gambling my life. I was doing something much more beautiful. I was carrying my life across. "
" Death frames the high wire. But I don't see myself as taking risks. I do all of the preparations that a non-death seeker would do. "
" This moment where we think we rest, when the brain is floating, you know, in sleep, is actually a moment where I could be very creative in a very strange, uncontrolled way. "
" I was in art school once a week from six to 16, which was essential in shaping my artistic sensitivity. "
" If a leaf fell from a tree, I'd stop juggling and play with the leaf. I went to my prop bag and got a little bandage and stuck the leaf back on the tree. People loved it. "
" You see, it's actually very good that a human activity is performed very close to death, because that's where life is. Life is, at its most valuable and most full, very close to the boundary of life. "
" If I am practicing on the wire, and you pushed me, I would not move, and if you take a piece of wood and beat me up on the shoulder and the head, I would not move. You would not put me out of balance. You would not be able to. I am solid as granite when I am on the tight rope, and I should be. "
" I started putting a wire up in secret and performing without permission. Notre Dame, the Sydney Harbor Bridge, the World Trade Center. And I developed a certitude, a faith that convinced me that I will get safely to the other side. If not, I will never do that first step. "
" I have a fear of water, believe it or not. To put a wire 12 feet over a swimming pool frightens me. I don't like water. "
" I am a wire-walker. I can walk any time, anywhere - I'm indestructible. "
" I would like to continue to tell stories of what I did in a biographical way, so I will continue to write. "
" There was a time when fire and story would fall asleep in unison. It was dream time. "