The Teenage Years — The Cheesesellers Wife

All bets are off in the teenage years

You still share your child’s hopes and fears

But they are a child no more –Can you hear that slammed door?

It’s a bumpy ride–Sometimes Jekyll, sometimes Hyde

You love them to bits, you can’t stand them anymore

And there again is that slamming door

You glimpse a young woman, you glimpse a […]

The Teenage Years — The Cheesesellers Wife

David Bruce: The Funniest People in Movies — Practical Jokes, Prejudice

Practical Jokes

• Hispanic movie star Antonio Banderas occasionally played practical jokes when he was a member of a traveling troupe of theatrical actors in his native Spain. For example, an actor on stage was required to eat a piece of bread, so Mr. Banderas put lots of salt and vinegar on the bread before it was taken on stage. However, being a member of this particular traveling troupe was not all fun and games. The actors put on plays that defied dictator Francesco Franco, so the actors, including Mr. Banderas, were sometimes arrested.

• Margaret Lockwood is an English actress who appeared in The Lady Vanishes, which was directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Mr. Hitchcock enjoyed playing practical jokes; he once asked Ms. Lockwood to sit in a chair that had been wired so that it gave her an electric shock.


• As a very out and very effeminate homosexual in London before the rise of the gay rights movement, Quentin Crisp was frequently beaten up, and he became as much of an expert in avoiding violent confrontations as one could become through experience. Once, some homophobes started following him, so he began to walk faster until a taxi appeared. He hailed the taxi and got into it. Frequently, confrontations would end at that point, but the young homophobes surrounded the taxi and the taxi driver ordered Mr. Crisp to get out — at other times, taxi drivers had driven slowly but persistently through the crowd of homophobes. When Mr. Crisp was pulled out of the taxi, the homophobes started to beat him and he fell to the ground. He was afraid that they would start kicking him, but he managed to say, “I seem to have annoyed you gentlemen in some way.” This dignified sentence was so unexpected that the homophobes let him get up and walk away, although they continued to shout insults after him. Actor John Hurt played Mr. Crisp in a celebrated 1975 made-for-TV movie titled The Naked Civil Servant.

• Hollywood screenwriter Charles Lederer was stationed in India during World War II. While there, he accompanied a friend on a visit to a British woman who vigorously denounced the Jews. This was a mistake, because Mr. Lederer’s father was a Jew, and Mr. Lederer was known for his remarkable ability to get revenge on people who made him angry. The British woman had a cabinet in her home, on top of which a very expensive vase was displayed. Mr. Lederer stood by the cabinet and asked, “What do you have against the Jews?” The British woman insincerely replied, “Why, I have nothing against the Jews.” Mr. Lederer then smashed the very expensive vase and said, “You have now.”

• Sometimes people who believe in racial stereotypes make themselves look like the fools they are. Once, James “Jimmy” Wong Howe, a famous Hollywood cinematographer, was preparing for the opening of a Chinese restaurant he had invested in. He noticed a news photographer trying to take a shot of the new restaurant despite being in danger of being run over because he was standing in the street. Mr. Howe told the photographer, “If you snap on a wide-angle lens, you can move the camera up on the sidewalk.” The photographer looked up at Mr. Wong and said, “Look, Chinaman, let me take the pictures and you go cook your noodles.”

• Groucho Marx and his wife looked for a beach club where their children could enjoy the ocean. However, Groucho was Jewish at a time when many clubs would not allow Jews to be members. When Groucho applied to become a member of a beach club, the manager said, “I don’t know if you are aware of this, but we have a very restricted clientele here.” Groucho knew that “restricted clientele” meant “no Jews allowed,” so he mocked prejudice by telling the manager, “Look, Mister, I am Jewish. My wife is not Jewish. That means my kids are only half Jewish. Can’t they go into the water up to their knees?”


Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved


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Music Recommendation: Cara Lee Coleman — “Black Mountain”


Music: “Black Mountain”


Artist: Cara Lee Coleman

Artist Location: St John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

Info: Cara Lee Coleman is a self-produced recording artist living in Conception Bay South, Newfoundland, Canada.”

Price: $1 (CAN) for track; Name Your Price (Includes FREE) for 20-track album

Genre: Pop



Cara Lee Coleman on Bandcamp