Gays and Lesbians
• After coming out as a lesbian for the first time to her audience, stand-up comedian Judy Carter had a good set and the audience gave her a standing ovation. She started crying because the audience had accepted her for who she was.
• Whenever people ask lesbian humorist Ellen Orleans what the Bible says about homosexuality, she says that the last time she checked, it said, “Love thy neighbor.”
• Early in the careers of country comedy duo Homer and Jethro, work (and pay) was hard to get, and consequently, food was hard to get. During this period of poverty, Jethro had a birthday, and Homer bought him a present with the little bit of money he had—a hot dog and a Coke. The birthday present was much appreciated.
• When Jewish comedian Myron Cohen bought a farm, his friend Bill Robbins brought him a house-warming present—a cow. Mr. Robbins said, “She’s a real Holstein. But to make her feel more comfortable, maybe we’d better change her name to Goldstein.”
• Gay men tend to like comedian Margaret Cho. One gay man sent her a beautiful basket of Vidal Sassoon hair care products, which pleased her until she realized that all of the products were for dry and damaged hair. Ms. Cho says, “Thanks, bitch.”
Husbands and Wives
• One of Fanny Brice’s three husbands was Nicky Arnstein, a small-time con man. Mr. Arnstein was a talker: a person who was always going to make it big, but who got most of his money from rich women. Still, he was handsome, and he understood the good things in life—that is, the good things in life that are expensive. Eventually, he spent time in prison after being convicted of masterminding a bond robbery. Fanny stayed true to Nicky while he was in prison, even naming her and Nicky’s second child after Nicky’s lawyer. Fanny never believed Nicky was involved in the bond robbery; she once told the press, “Mastermind? He couldn’t mastermind an electric bulb into a socket.”
• Margaret Dumont played a high-society woman who was the target of Groucho Marx’s amorous (and money-grubbing) affections in 12 years of films by the Marx Brothers. Once, a reporter—influenced perhaps by the many marriage proposals Groucho made to Ms. Dumont on screen—wrote that the two were married in real life. When Ms. Dumont told Groucho that the reporter’s mistake was embarrassing, he replied, “Embarrassing? I’ve just written a magazine article about my wife, and the magazine is printing her picture. When the article comes out, I’ll be arrested for bigamy.”
• Comedian Rita Rudner got married in a courthouse, and she and her husband didn’t spend a lot of money on wedding photographs. Instead, both of them brought cameras. She asked a passerby to take their photo, so her wedding photo shows her and her husband smiling, and in the background are a soft drink machine and a man drinking a Diet Coke. However, it could have been worse, and it was. Her husband’s camera contained a very old roll of film, and when it was developed, in addition to the one wedding photo, she saw lots of photos of her husband’s old girlfriends.
• Zero Mostel’s relationship with his second wife, Kate, was sometimes stormy. Once, they decided to separate. Kate was in bed, turned away from her husband, while Mr. Mostel thundered around the room, packing his suitcase. Finally, he said, “Aren’t you going to turn around and say good-bye?” She did, and saw Zero standing by the bed holding a suitcase and dressed only in his hat, socks, and shoes. She laughed and told him to come to bed.
• Charlie Chaplin and Jim Tully were walking in Hollywood on a side street when they came across a wedding party. The group recognized Mr. Chaplin and asked if he would mind having his photograph taken with the bride and groom. He consented, and after the photo was taken, started walking again with Mr. Tully. For a while, the much-married Mr. Chaplin walked with his head down, then he said, “Poor devils.”
Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved
The Funniest People in Comedy — Buy