Comedy and Jokes by Red Skelton
Joke's 'R' Us
That is where I need to go to purchase some funny material.
I cannot believe I am writing a Hub on jokes, but then, that's a big reason I joined Hub Pages a year ago - Not to write jokes, but to learn to write in a wider Universe. So here I am.
Sometimes I do funny things and make a class laugh. Sometimes I arrange words and pictures to illustrate a point with dry humor. So I have nothing to lose in presenting you with one of my favorite comedians.
Richard "Red "Skelton (1913 - 1997) was a clean-joke teller, an portrait artist, and a poet. He was in the same poetry association I joined and I was glad of it, because his work is good.
Richard Bernard “Red” Skelton
Red Skeleton became a part of American culture and entertainment history, working in the old traveling medicine shows, in minstrel shows, in burlesque, at dance marathons, on showboats, in the circus, on stage in Vaudeville; and on radio, on TV, and in films. He was also a portrait painter of clowns and a poet, as well as a symphony and song writer.
Laughter for Healing
At 10 or so years old, he left home and joined a Medicine Show. That's the traveling show Cher sang about in Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves. They sing, they do magic, they dance (some strip a little), they sell some tonic, and someone tells jokes or does slapstick.
This was like vaudeville, only it traveled in wagons or in old cars in the 1920s about the time of the prelude to the Great Depression. Growing up in extreme poverty, he needed something to laugh at and he was influenced by vaudeville and tent show comedian Ed Wynn.
Red learned a lot about funny faces, clowning, slapstick comedy and pantomime, but one of the best things he did was the Story Joke. The one presented below is from vaudeville, updated and cleaned up a little for mid-20th century television. Red did some "naughty jokes", as he called them, but never on film. He did not want audiences to see or hear them.
Red used to upset his weekly TV script rehearsals with these jokes to make himself laugh so hard that he could relax before the live taping later. However, he was relaxed while, others were annoyed.
A Master of the Vaudeville Story Joke
Red Skelton Vaudeville Joke
A man goes into the confessional at church and says, "Forgive me, father. I have sinned."
The priest recognizes the man's voice. It is Charlie Smith, one of the most loyal, devoted members of the church. The priest says, "Charlie, I cannot believe that you, of all people, could possibly have committed a sin."
Charlie says, "Well, father, I am ashamed to admit that I did. My wife and I have been married for 42 years and for the last ten, we have been unable to have marital relations. And you cannot imagine what that is like, father. It just creates unbearable tension and causes my dear wife to believe that I do not love her, which is far, far from the truth."
"I understand," says the priest.
Charlie goes on: "Then, last Saturday evening, I looked at my wife and she was bending over a sack of potatoes. There was something about her at that moment...I suddenly experienced feelings I had not felt for a decade. I was suddenly filled with love and passion for my wife and I grabbed her and ripped her dress off and we made love, right there on that sack of potatoes. And that is how I have sinned, father."
The priest is puzzled. "That is not a sin, my son. The two of you are married...it is not a sin to express that love for your wife..."
There are tears in Charlie's voice as he gasps, "You mean it, father? You really mean it? We won't be thrown out of the church?"
The priest laughs. "Of course not. Why would we throw you out of the church?"
Charlie says, "Well, they threw us out of the Safeway."
The Man Who Made Peter Lorre and Bela Lugosi Funny
Peter Lorre and Red Skelton perform The Honeymooners
Clem and Bela Lugosi
Red Skelton Museum
Pie Fight at Red Skelton Clown School, Held Annually in June
Historic Vaudeville Footage
Laughter and Medicine
- Health: Laughter as Cure
Humor was once badly criticized in parts of the medical profession and only bullyism and academics were respected. Times have changed for the better. Medical Students at many Universities in America are now trained in how to be funny.
- Laughter as Medicine
The medical community recognizes the healthful results of laughter. and encourages us to use it. The brain and the body can benefit.
- How to Become a Certified Laughter Club Leader and E...
Laughter is medicine and it can be cultivated with physical activity and even Laugh Clubs. Many physicians know the healing power of laughter and most children know it. You can too!
© 2008 Patty Inglish
More by this Author
Every year, short story writers are chosen to win the PEN/O. Henry Prize writing awards. Their stories appear in an annual anthology. If you write, this award can be one of your aspirations.
These are films filled with clean humor and situations that will entertain kids and adults. Story lines are good and characters memorable. Happy viewing!
After writing resumes, cover letters, and job applications, candidates hope to interview well, impress the hiring officer, and secure the job. Here's what to avoid saying during the interview.