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 that damn Muddy Rag #12 Lords o' Laughter
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Lords o' Laughter
by Big Harry Lumpyn and The Sturdy Beggars

The precious fuel that propels the Mud Show is laughter, the more raucous the better. The pursuit of grins and guffaws consumes our concentration as we pace the Pit at any given Faire. Really, that’s what it’s all about – if we’re not havin’ fun, the show ain’t funny, and if the show ain’t hitting the hundreds of funny-bones in our proximity, we might as well hang up our well-worn rags and decide what the hell we wanna be when we grow up. Enough of that noise! Since a quarter century of Mud Shows has honed our particular antic approach, we thought it might be a titch enlightening to poll some active Sturdies as to what comedians or comedy acts served as influential icons in forging their own humorous hijinks at the Faires and perhaps beyond… the specific query being, “pick your top three favorite comedians/comedy acts that you drew inspiration from as a Sturdy Beggar.”

Halfwit Henry: The Marx Brothers (because they are the bomb now and always) / W.C. Fields (because he kept it real in the most scary ways possible) / Steve Martin (as close to a comedy Renaissance man as there will ever be)

Spunky Jitters: Bobcat Goldthwait (see “Shakes the Clown) / The Amazing Johnathon (even though he tried to scam me for $100 one time in Vegas ) / Christopher Guest (subtle master) [Honorable mentions - Jerry Lewis, Andy Kaufman, and Cheech and Chong, although I can't remember why)]

Fitzhugh Nicely: Jonathon Winters / Robin Williams / Bill Hicks

Dr. Schmutzig Fubar: Dick Van Dyke (his beautiful physical comedy and sense of timing has never been duplicated) / Billy Billy vonBilly (there is only one – he is my Mud Show idol – he understands the group dynamic wonderfully & knows how to ride the edge…) / Matt Groening (The Simpsons never fails to amaze – how do they make comedy so accessible to both adults and kids? Genius!)

Big Harry Lumpyn: Monty Python's Flying Circus (esp. Palin & Jones renfaire-wise) / Buster Keaton (incomparably brilliant slapstick god) / The Firesign Theatre (...maybe you had to be there. Or not anywhere at all.)

Rott Wyler: Steve Allen (who says intellectuals can't be funny?) / Jackie Gleason (the style and grace of physical comedy, and the longings of the poor but decent everyman) / Bob Hope & Jack Benny (tie) (nothing is as funny as one's own discomfort). [special mention for Tom Lehrer (satire)]

Figgy Pudding: Billy Billy vonBilly (he is without a doubt the greatest of the beggars & I was proud to have known and worked with him for over 20 years – “Bless you Billy wherever you are”) / Eddie Izzard (he uses history for material and looks smashing in cover-girl makeup) / Figgy Pudding (if you can’t laugh at yourself who the @#!!% can you laugh at?)

Lutillah Fairdinkum: The Marx Bros. / W. C. Fields / Monty Python. (other personal faves are Buster Keaton, Laurel & Hardy and John Candy)

Legs Akimbo: Red Skelton (first guy I responded to as a Total Goof other than Jerry Lewis, but his heart was so pure, he always left a better comic after-taste than did the Rat Packer). / Flip Wilson (nostalgiac tip o' the hat. Flip's early [pre-TV series] album "Cowboys and Colored People" was my first LP buy). / Bill Murray (the kind of guy whose work looks so easeful, but his timing is micro-finite and his sense of play is fluid and seldom forced). (And as and acid-tinged throw-in: George W. Bush [That guy cracks me up every time he opens his mouth. Where does he get his material?])

Privy LePew: Snidely Whiplash / Gopher (from “The Love Boat”) / Mary Ann (from “Gilligan’s Island”)

Bob the Beggar: Monty Python (like every other geek, though I don't do the routines out loud any more) / Marx Bros. (and Horsefeathers is the funniest movie, end of discussion) / Woody Allen (and I completely understand the Soon Ye thing. Still confused by the Mia Farrow thing)


that damn Muddy Rag #12 designed & executed by B. H. Lumpyn, S. Jitters 03/04
editor: B. H. Lumpyn
scribes du jour: S. Jitters, B. H. Lumpyn, Hw. Henry
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