A series of anecdotes with or without any connection to the running of a restaurant.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Clowns are born....

After we moved from the farm to the town, we lived in a flat near the Railway Station.
Why we left the farm was never really explained to me except that we did not have running water or electricity.

When the circus came to town it always pitched its marquee on the square next to our block.
In the week it played to full houses my friends and I always befriended the circus hands by offering them fresh water and home made bread. In return, they let us into the circus as often as they possibly could when the ringmaster had his back turned.

I loved every aspect of the circus. The sawdust, the music played by the orchestra perched above the entrance, the trapeze artists and the wild animals.
But what I adored most of all were the clowns. I could not take my eyes off them. I laughed at their slightest twitch. Their perfectly rehearsed trips and falls made roll with laughter. Water out of button holes, smacks and wallops, flattened hats, oversized shoes, baggy trousers…

All this led to my total fascination with these amazing laughter machines and to the dream of becoming a circus clown. I believe it was a simple desire to make people laugh.

At boarding school, I made many friends laugh even if on occasions I ended up getting detention for doing so at the wrong time.

Nowadays, I just try to make my customers laugh. It is an act. I often say the same lines over and over again in one busy evening and as long as I gauge it right, they do laugh. They are my (captive) audience, nailed to their chairs just waiting to be fed and watered.
And I am their clown for the evening!

But if the truth be told, it is not really about being funny, it is just about making people laugh!

What really makes you laugh?


Blogger hobbes said...

My Hubby really makes me laugh. Also people who fall in the water with their clothes on. Don't know if the two are related..

19/11/05 12:49 AM  
Blogger andrea said...

I'm eating at your restaurant. Nothing more nutritious than humour with my humous.

19/11/05 2:09 AM  
Blogger Misty said...

I went to the circus recently and it was so lame. There was no wild animals and the people walking around insisting that I eat two more bags of popcorn and a snowcone were flipping me out. Not to mention the cannon backed into the sound tower and nearly killed 100 people, but that was actually kind of funny, of course it wouldn't have been if anyone died.

Personally, everything makes me laugh, especially two year old children.

19/11/05 2:21 AM  
Blogger Caribbean Colors said...

Any movie with Adam Sandler makes me laugh.

19/11/05 3:38 AM  
Blogger ValGalArt said...

Wonderful story Cream! It's the story that we would all love to have! almost everything and everyone makes me laugh! I have a perpetual grin on my face at all times and have found that people respond well to this. I laugh at all jokes!Anyone that is a comdian is happy to have me around as I laugh loudly too.
Thanks for your sweet comment, it made me feel great!

19/11/05 5:22 AM  
Blogger Hayden said...

I did clown for awhile when I was in my 20's. I freelanced (kids parties, store openings, etc) and then for awhile I worked for a clown who opened a local agency.

there is something magical that happens when you blank out your face and begin to draw in a new one. If you haven't done it, you should. The idea behind clown white is that it turns your face into a stark, blank slate. It doesn't have to be white. but it must erase as much as can be done. Then you stare at yourself in the mirror and things come through, and you know where and how to begin to draw in features.

You may find a "you" you only know obliquely, a part of yourself that you sense sometimes from the corner of your eye.

The other part is that once you are in what I always called "clown drag" everyone else changes. Stuffed shirts that wouldn't dream of looking your way grab their children by the hand and draw them to the window, waving.

It is pure magic, and a special euphoria.

19/11/05 5:34 AM  
Blogger cream said...

Hobbes, anything funny that happens to people makes me laugh except if kids hurt themselves.

Andrea, humorous hummus...That's a
great dish!

Misty, yes political correctness and financial gain...I was once "shaved" by an elephant at a circus! The highlight of my circus stories! I forgot to mention it in the post! I will get back to it someday!

Lee, Adam Sandler is hilarious! He makes me laugh out loud!

Val, there is nothing like laughter to keep us young! I always look at the funny side of everything! You are a gem and I meant it!

Hayden, you lucky thing! Making kids laugh! What a job, what a joy!
I painted my face once at a University evening and I "hogged" the stage because I had no inhibitions at all. I was someone else! A "me" that had always been there but was too shy to reveal itself!
It IS pure Magic! Thanks for the contribution.
I lost track of your blog but I will make up for it by printing your posts and reading them at leisure! Thanks!

19/11/05 9:39 AM  
Blogger Ale said...

you know, i'm weird, i never thought clowns were funny- (but i dont thing stand up comics are funny either) anyway, when i was a kid i was sad for the clown because all these bad things would happen to them! tripping, water poured on them... i really felt BAD! it was my least favorite part of the circus. (agian i'm weird) i did love the head insied the lion's had act! and yes i thought it would be hillarious if the lion bit the head of! like, what the heck would you say in heaven??

"ohhh you died? how did you die??"

"well... i stuck my head into the mouth of a lion..."

"um... yeah that was a pretty dumb thing to do"

i'm wacky-
i also make fun of birdflu-

19/11/05 12:18 PM  
Blogger Ale said...

oh this is not related- i just read back to casa del mar! yey how exciting-

19/11/05 12:22 PM  
Blogger cream said...

Ale, you are different! I am not saying weird because I, too think of those things, like a lion biting someone's head off. I laugh at them but then, I wouldn't want it to happen.
Stand up artists! My present favourite is Chris Rok!
You think too much, Ale! Laugh first and then think later!
As for Casa del Mar, it is coming slowly but surely

19/11/05 12:31 PM  
Blogger Guyana-Gyal said...

Well, y'know, this made me laugh:
"They are my (captive) audience, nailed to their chairs..."

Everything makes me laugh...the parrot that cussed me too.

Also, my siblings. P G Wodehouse, Are you being served, Fawlty Towers, our local cartoons, Mr. Bean, that movie with that American actor with the mask.

I laugh at myself too, sometimes :-D

You're right...it's not about BEING funny so much as MAKING others laugh.

19/11/05 1:09 PM  
Blogger cream said...

GG, they're not going anywhere until they've listened to my home spun puns and they're not getting fed until they laugh!
It is good to laugh! Pipo brought me 2 CDs by a sadly-defunct French comic called Coluche! I laugh my head off while driving!
I am fortunate to understand lots of types of humours!
I really fancy myself as a stand-up! The only thing is that I can hear Karen's voice in the background saying: "Sit down, you are making a fool of yourself!"
She knows that nothing fazes me, really!
If people laugh at me, they're lucky cos I won't charge them anything!

19/11/05 2:30 PM  
Blogger Chill Daddy said...

I love clowns too... I used to do a little clowning, I took a weekend seminar-type course and learned to do the makeup proffessionally and everything. I mainly did it for children's ministry functions, but unlike Hayden, I didn't get to be a funny, performing clown. My specialty was twisting balloons (which I still love to do for kids birthdays). It was fun, but not as much fun as making kids laugh.

I'm still haunted by memories of the parents of children waiting in my lines, though. They would yell at their children to hurry up and make up their mind, bicker about who was next, look at their watches and roll their eyes... totally sucking the joy out of the occasion for me and the kids.

Here's a link to a picture of me in action several years ago:

19/11/05 2:36 PM  
Blogger Chill Daddy said...

Sorry I don't know how to make links in the comments, it can't be that hard, though, the stupid blogspammers have a link every other word.

Is it my imagination, or are the word verification thingies getting more challenging?

19/11/05 2:39 PM  
Blogger cream said...

There we are!
Looks good!
I'd love to learn them balloons tricks!

19/11/05 5:23 PM  
Blogger LDahl said...

Visiting blog sites of my new friends and reading and seeing makes me smile and laugh out loud almost daily.... the most creative people I've run into in years...it has really changed how I feel about things:)

I laugh at myself, a lot.

Some clowns I have been enchanted by and some have scared me and some have made me sad... I guess just like ...oh gosh, I was going to say real people, which makes clowns what?

I love coming here to your site, it always makes me think! Thank you for all the work you do to make it special!

22/11/05 7:53 PM  
Blogger cream said...

Idahl, thank you very much for all the kind things you say!

Since July when, after discovering Vit's blog on the BBC, I started I have "met" AMAZING people through this and other sites.
Keep on laughing! It is the best tonic we have!

22/11/05 11:00 PM  

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