My Recollection of My Collection of Clowns
Was It A Fascination With Funny Faces Or Something Much Deeper
Do you collect things? Maybe you have a collection of baseball cards that you collected as a kid, or bottle caps, or for some kids, like my older sister, she liked to collect butterflies in a photo book.
I think who collects a certain type of memorabilia depends on that person’s interests and personality. However, I had always believed my collection of clowns started on purely a whim, and for some reason; I took on an unexplained fascination with it. Well, until today. Until right now this moment when I sat down and thought about my past hobby, and actually saw a new outlook on it. I think I understand the pull to my hobby of collecting those sad faces. I say sad, because, they were my favorite ones to collect. I had a few of the smiley faces, but sadness, well; it was what I was drawn to.
My childhood collection, started from the age of ten or eleven and continued up into my twenties. Then with no explanation, I packed my clowns away and later sold them off. Now, as I sit here, I suddenly feel this eye-opening realization that when you travel through this life, if you really know yourself and pay attention to the things you have been through, you will eventually see the purpose of the things that you had no reason for doing at the time in your youth and even through all your years. It will dawn on you at the right moment as to why you may have had an interest in a particular thing. It will all make sense. My clown collection started on, what I thought, was a little girl grabbing a liking to clowns by choice, on a whim. However, I feel now, at this moment, that my colorful collection meant something more to me; more than just a cute collection of clowns.
Red Skelton's Freddie the Freeloader Christmas Dinner
Part 3 A Clown Belongs To Everybody
Part 5 The End
The Initial Inspiration For My Collection of Clowns; Red Skelton's Freddie The Freeloader
I remember the first clown that fascinated me. Some of you may remember “The Red Skelton Show” and how Mr. Skelton put on skits with his different characters. One of those characters was “Freddie the Freeloader” the clown, of course. Mr. Skelton’s show ran from (1951-1971) and so, I was not even around yet for this show to strike my interest. Actually, I was born within three months after the show went off the air. However, luckily I caught a few shows in syndication around the early eighties. The truth is, I don’t even remember much about them except laughing at Mr. Skelton a little.
Then he made an HBO Christmas Special in 1981 starring his character “Freddie the Freeloader” and I felt so enthralled with this character. Seemingly he was a hobo, not really a clown, but was mistaken for one. He had such inspirational messages, and I can remember feeling great about how this character didn’t have much, but he cared for everyone and everything. This clown made me, a deeply shy child, a very lonely child, a child who had lived through bullies and sadness at this time in her life, feel better.
It’s funny what we remember that we didn’t realize was happening at a certain time during our lives. I’m realizing why I started my clown collection just today as I’m writing about it and remembering, and I’m wondering to myself, how I didn’t recognize this before?
Anyway, after that, I can remember picking up my first clown and purchasing it. It was in a hospital gift shop, and we were there to visit a great aunt of mine. I remember so clearly walking by the gift shop window and that little porcelain clown caught my eye. Coincidentally, it looked like “Freddie the Freeloader” a bit, but this one had a sad face. I asked my mom if I could buy it with my allowance, she agreed and so my collection began. I really wish I would have kept just that one as a special memory, but I didn’t. I hope someone still has it in their collection. Who knows, maybe a little shy ten-year-old.
I now would like to thank Mr. Red Skelton wherever he is up in that great big sky, for inspiring me and teaching me an important thing. Something I hope I still have today. I would like to thank him for showing me how to have compassion for others and also the beauty of sadness.
Dedication To The People Who Make Us Laugh
I would now like to share, as I always do, a poem dedicated to Mr. Skelton and all the clowns that took the time to travel around and make kids smile; who made everyone's day a little bit better in one way or the other.
I would also like to acknowledge some of my favorite comedians that didn't actually dress up like clowns, but to me were clowns in their own right for making all of us smile a little bigger and laugh a little louder.
Robin Williams, Jim Carrey, Charlie Chaplin, and Jerry Lewis Thanks! :)
I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy, because they know what it's like to feel absolutely worthless and they don't want anyone else to feel like that.
Did you have a collection of something growing up?
A Clown's Life
Dust off my lips, it’s time
to smile again. My mindset
and mood find its glow within.
Happiness is a choice of
illusion, just as sadness
can be packed up and
Today, my choice is to laugh,
to grab hold of hope, and to
see beauty without visiting a
Then dust back on the red
and white, and this time
I will draw it on upright.
Smile, dream, and be seen.
Pull a giggle out of a loving
Child’s face. Then look over
at the appreciation radiating
in a mother’s face.
Tip my hat and twirl my
tie, trip and fall to
end the show.
Then finally as bellies
hurt from all the laughter,
I’ll dust my play away and
rest up for another day.
© 2016 Missy Smith