Heh. I did get some video, but he didn't want word getting out due to stuff about becoming a hypnotherapist so I've only shown a few people and I don't think I've written much about it either. I remembered that he had moved on from the hypnotherapy thing so I pinged him and he says it's cool to share with the world, so I'll tell you all about it. It was super interesting and I didn't end up eating at all that day because I was just so focused on making the most out of the day I was out there. It was a really surreal experience for me for a few different reasons.
To give a brief bit of background, some ways of thinking about hypnosis suggest that instant inductions should work without any pretalk or even permission. There's good reason to believe it can work this way even before seeing anyone pulling it off, but we also had that in Mayajids many videos of "hypnosculpting" and the video of our moderator Anthony Jacquin pulling one off
for a TV show thing he was working on. There's also some discussion of the topic if you search through the archives.
Although there's good reason to believe it can work, there's also plenty of reason to doubt - and the video evidence not *that* solid. If I remember correctly, in Anthony's case the guy didn't even know he was a hypnotist and the only prior interaction with the guy beforehand was to ask who his favorite movie star was, but there were cameras there and that can definitely change things. In Mayajid's case, who knows what's really going on off camera. Looks like it could definitely be legit and he did post a failure video, but even if he's totally legit there's no telling his success rate. When he would do two or three in a row that's evidence that his success rate can't be *that* bad, but at least in the case with the three, the next two aren't so "cold" anymore.
On top of that, there was another guy claiming crazy success with it and I had just caught the guy out for lying and making everything up. Jake didn't fit the same patterns/motives, but he was still making some pretty big claims (which, when I asked him for permission to share the videos the other day, he admitted were pretty exaggerated (hah!)). So I was already a quite skeptical when I was buying the plane tickets to stop by NYC to meet Jake on the way home from that side of the country.
It got worse when he seemed to be backing off his claims a bit and saying stuff like "I haven't done this stuff in a while, since I've been working on becoming a hypnotherapist" and "I went out again to brush up before your visit and I didn't have that much success". The first checked out with what I knew already, and the second was kinda expected anyway given how important state is for cold instants and the pressure to perform he must have been feeling. He's the kind of guy that *really* doesn't like looking arrogant and he had some big claims to live up to, so it really wasn't surprising. He ended up showing up a bit late, so the whole time I was just standing in grand central station wondering if I had been duped and he was gonna no-show and I was gonna be the fool that was gullible enough to actually buy a plane ticket to test this belief.
He did show, and I thought it would be funny to pretend to do a surprise handshake induction on him - and I thought for sure he was going to do the same to me (turns out he did consider it, but decided that he didn't want to be a jerk). So I was the jerk, and when I said "sleep" he *dropped* - like, *physically dropped*. I had to hold him up and he was visibly confused about what was happening. I guess he had gotten pretty conditioned to respond to "sleep!" in his hypnotherapy training course. Oops.
So I had just inadvertently hypnotized this guy, whom I had literally *just met*, and I was holding this guy up, while people walked by presumably giving me weird looks - I couldn't really check because I was too busy taking it all in and realizing that *this is really happening*. It just got weirder from there as he handed me a camera and actually started approaching random people and trying to hypnotize them out of nowhere. He approached this guy, started asking for directions or something, and then *went for it*. And it didn't work.
The guy got angry and aggressive and Jake just tried to put his hands up and say "sorry". I really thought I was about to watch him get his donkey kicked. I watched him do it again and again with the same fate. It was a really weird combination of "this guy actually showed up, gave me his camera, and is really going for it" and "there's *no f***ing way* this can actually work, and he's getting shut down exactly as hard as you'd think he would when pulling sh** like this". There really was no good explanation for what I was seeing.
And then on the fourth time it f***ing *worked*.
The guys head dropped down and Jake was doing his snappy thing and my jaw literally dropped. I just couldn't believe it. A moment later Jake supposedly felt some resistance (I maintain that he just pussed out
) and bailed, walking quickly past me. I was trying to be as inconspicuous as I could, so I turned the camera down and missed this guys expression as he walked passed me, but the guy was a freaking *zombie*. It still weirds me out how quickly he got into that state, but sh**'s *real*.
The rest of the day was mostly me trying to come to terms with and make sense of what I saw. It was a pretty big shift going from "this should be possible in theory [but I've never seen anything like it and it sure doesn't *feel* real]" to "yep, this is just a real thing that can happen". He tried several more times, but his head really wasn't in it - and state is *crucial* for cold instant inductions. (I also saw him try it on a dude in a Mickey Mouse costume with literally no introduction, but with the costume it was impossible to tell whether it had actually worked or if the guy was merely going along with it until Jake bailed again. Unfortunately I didn't get this one on film because I had literally no warning)
We took a bit of a break to do some parkour in the park, and had gathered a bit of a crowd. Between seeing it actually work, seeing that Jake was kinda out of the mental and emotional energy that it takes (and besides, had already proven his point that it was absolutely possible), and seeing him actually have the *balls* to do it, I kinda had to sack up and give it a shot myself. We had been talking to one of the guys who stopped to watch us for a few minutes, and I was starting to feel comfortable that I could give it a shot on him without it being quite as scary of a thing if (when) it didn't work out as hoped.
I tried, and it predictably didn't work. I was still being a bit of a bitch and my delivery of "sleep!" was a bit too much like "sleep?" so he didn't really understand what it was he was supposed to do. Anyway, I explained what I was trying to do and asked him what it was like for him. He explained that it was mostly just confusing, and it seems that the problem was that I wasn't being clear and assertive enough, not that he had actually rejected it. We showed him the recordings from the day and he thought it was pretty cool.
That gave me the confidence to try it a little more (in that same non-committal way), and while I didn't succeed that day, I did learn a lot about what I had been doing wrong and what it was going to take to succeed.
All in all, great day.