Fun Facts

Fun Facts

A page for the curious, confused, and confounded.
Come on in and look around.

Don gets asked a lot of questions about being a mentalist and how he does what he does. As you may have noticed, unlike many other mentalists, he doesn't try to make people think he's a psychic; he's a fan of honesty, transparency, and knowledge.

In that spirit, here are some facts and information about mentalism, ESP, and other aspects of his line of work.

How to Choose a Corporate Entertainer

How to Choose a Corporate Entertainer

When hundreds of corporate meeting planners were interviewed about their main concerns and interests when looking for corporate event entertainment, several items came up over and over again. Below, in no particular order, are five of the top recurring responses. Keeping the attendees happy is often mentioned first by meeting planners. They aren’t always too…

What is ESP?

What is ESP?

Most people have heard of ESP, but I’ve found that very few actually know what the acronym represents. It stands for extra-sensory perception. The five basic senses are sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch; ESP is often referred to as the sixth sense. Some people think everyone has it, others claim it’s something possessed by…

What is a Micro-Expression and Why Should I Care?

What is a Micro-Expression and Why Should I Care?

“Micro-expression” is a term coined by Dr. Paul Ekman, the individual whose research inspired the TV show “Lie to Me.” It refers to split-second expressions that appear naturally on a person’s face when they intentionally or unintentionally conceal how they feel. Micro expressions are often difficult to recognize without a lot of training and practice…

What Is a Mentalist?

What Is a Mentalist?

Mentalists are performing artists who appear to wield psychic powers like mind reading, ESP, divination, and precognition. They have no such powers, but have so effectively sharpened their abilities to read body language and exercise subtle psychological influence that it looks like they can know a person’s inner thoughts or predict what they’ll do. So,…

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – Voice Patterns & Content

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – Voice Patterns & Content

How people speak and what they say provide important clues about honesty. A change in voice can indicate deception, but also pay attention to a person’s speech rate and breathing patterns. If either speeds up or slows down, chances are you’re not hearing the truth. Pausing, throat clearing, or other stalling techniques may also indicate…

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – Consistency

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – Consistency

If a person answers questions that weren’t asked, this is a sign of possible deception. They also often demonstrate delayed reactions and facial expressions. If someone says “I’m so sad it happened!” but there’s a delay in their expression of sadness, they are probably not being honest. Or, when someone receives a present they don’t…

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – Body Language

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – Body Language

No single clue conclusively reveals truth or deception. It’s more important to examine a person’s entire behavior. Honesty is characterized by behaviors that are in sync. Besides posture, note the appropriate coordination between face, body, voice, and speech. Is the person you’re talking to very fidgety? Most kids fidget when they’re fibbing, and so do…

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – The Eyes

How to Tell if Someone Is Lying – The Eyes

They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. They’re not only incredibly useful for intake of visual information, but also purveyors of a myriad of messages that reveal a great deal about a person’s thoughts. Some of the messages are intentional, but many are subconscious and we aren’t even aware they’re being sent….

Reality or Illusion?

Reality or Illusion?

What do you see? At first, it looks like you could fall right into this cavernous hole. Upon closer scrutiny, though, we realize it’s a well-done artist’s rendering. The entire surface is flat, but a talented artist with a creative mind took paint and brought it to life with perspective. In recent years, one piece…

Most Common Nonverbal Messages People Send

Most Common Nonverbal Messages People Send

Only 20 percent of human communication is verbal, so the vast majority of the messages we send out are nonverbal. Some are intentional, but many are subconscious, and we constantly broadcast messages whether we realize it or not. Here’s a brief list of some of the most common nonverbal cues: Crossed arms It’s a closed-off…

How to Read Minds, Part II

How to Read Minds, Part II

Let me start out by saying if you’re looking to learn how to harness your innermost psychic abilities, you’re in the wrong place. What I talk about has nothing to do with supernatural powers. From my perspective, “reading minds” is more accurately described as reading thoughts. Through a combination of psychology, observation, and probability, it’s…

How to Read Minds, Part I

How to Read Minds, Part I

My name is Don Townsend and I am a mentalist. Many people mistakenly believe mentalists are psychic or exercise some sort of extra-sensory perception (ESP). I make it a point to help people understand that what I do is not supernatural; it’s a combination of psychology, observation, and influence, but it is definitely not ESP….

How to Influence People

How to Influence People

Most of us don’t want to admit we can be influenced by others. Advertisers bet big sums on their ability to influence us. During Super Bowl 2015, a 30-second ad spot cost a cool $4.5 million, or $150,000 per second. Clearly, companies think they can influence people in a matter of seconds. My name is…

How to Find the Right Entertainment for Your Event

How to Find the Right Entertainment for Your Event

You’ve chosen the perfect menu and venue, and you’re working hard to make this an unforgettable event from start to finish. But if your entertainment leaves your guests yawning and looking at their watches, you’ve blown it. The boss is counting on you to make the event fun, engaging, memorable, but in good taste. You…

How to Be Observant Like Sherlock Holmes

How to Be Observant Like Sherlock Holmes

The fictional character Sherlock Holmes could quickly read a situation and come up with a conclusion that explained it. With practice, anyone can hone similar skills. Close observation of people and situations is exceptionally valuable. You’ll notice subtle verbal and nonverbal cues during conversations, interviews, presentations, and anywhere else, allowing you to respond more insightfully….

Are You Psychic?

Are You Psychic?

Have you ever been watching TV when your phone rings, and before you even look at it, you know who’s calling? Ever been with a friend and knew what they were going to say before they said it? At one time or another, almost everyone has had an experience like this, and some people more…