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Edwin Booth: Evening at the Improv

While performing a duel scene in a play one day, Edwin Booth, whose character was supposed to fall down and die, was dismayed when the stage pistol held by his co-star malfunctioned. Though the actor pulled the trigger again and again, it failed to go off. Finally, the distraught man rushed up to Booth and kicked him in the bottom. Without a moment's hesitation, the quick thinking Booth ad-libbed, "My God, his shoe is poisoned!" -- and promptly fell to the stage.

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