Guest Author - Carol Taller
George Joseph Kresge, Jr. was born in Montclair, NJ on January 12, 1935. Kresge went to Seton Hall University and earned his BA in 1963. He worked eight years as a consultant to a psychologist.
It was in the 1970's that Kreskin changed his name to “The Amazing Kreskin” and he became popular as a mentalist. Under the inspiration of “Mandrake the Magician, a comic strip about a magician that fought crime, Kreskin changed his name and image and became a well known public figure.
Kreskin did not promote himself as having paranormal or clairvoyant powers and denies being a psychic. He describes his telepathy as a heightening of the senses and these heightened senses are the powers that he uses in his act. He believes that telepathy and ESP can be scientifically explained. According to Kreskin, he learned to sensitize himself to the reactions and attitudes of people around him. Under certain conditions, he claims, he can sense people’s thoughts as well as influence their thoughts.
Kreskin had a tv series from 1971 to 1975 called “The Amazing World of Kreskin” and built his career on the belief that he was able to read other people’s thoughts. He would guess the birthdays of people in the audience or guess what was on the hidden playing cards. The show was broadcast throughout Canada and syndicated in the United States.
Kreskin published two books during the 1970’s- “The Amazing World of Kreskin” and “Use Your Head to Get Ahead! With Kreskin’s Mind Power Book.” Kreskin appeared on “The Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson 61 times during that decade. One of the most famous character skits that Johnny Carson did on his show was based on the Amazing Kreskin magic act. Carson called his character “Carnac the Magnificant”; he would hold an envelope to his head and pretend he could sense the content of the envelope.
In 1980’s and 1990’s Kreskin made several appearances on “Late Night with David Letterman” and the “Howard Stern” shows. And in 2009 he made appearances on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon”.
Kreskin still makes appearances and is active as a performer. At the end of each calendar year he makes predictions regarding the upcoming year on CNN and the Fox News Channel. He also teaches classes for law enforcement groups. He teaches how to understand body language and voice inflections which would be helpful during interrogations, and he instructs techniques for relaxation and how to jog people’s memories.