Saturday, June 20, 2009

One Dead Clown Deserves Another

On our way back home from an early Father’s Day gathering at my brother’s house, my husband, Gene, witnessed a near-miss collision on Interstate 35 between a semi-truck and a small car. He said, “Limpy just about got it.” “Limpy?” I asked. Gene replied, “Yeah, Limpy the Clown. He’s coming up beside us now. He cut right in front of that truck when there was barely any room to get in.” I looked over, and sure ‘nuff, there was a clown in full makeup.

Stenciled on the side of his car was “Limpy the Clown”, along with his telephone number. On the back windshield, it said, “Clown Around”. If he isn’t more careful, ol’ Limpy may need to change his signs to “Limping the Clown” and “Limp Around”.

I was surprised to discover that many people don’t like clowns. In fact, those with an excessive fear of clowns are said to have Coulrophobia. reported,

“A University of Sheffield study of more than 250 children, aged four to 16,found the images [of clowns] were widely disliked. Even some of the oldest children found the images scary…We found that clowns are universally disliked by
children. Some found clowns quite frightening and unknowable.”

My niece, Callie, really doesn’t like clowns. I’m not sure if she has coulrophobia, but if she does, it’s likely my fault. One year, in my other life, I worked as a window cleaner with a friend. We wore cute, short, bright-colored overalls with matching hats as we cleaned the large storefront windows of many businesses. On Halloween, my girlfriend and I dressed as clowns. We had the big shoes, the clown makeup, striped socks and fake hair. We looked really, really good. I called my sister, Cameron, and suggested that she and Callie, who was 3 or 4 years old, come see us, since we were working in her part of town.

Cameron pulled up in her car while we were washing windows. As she and Callie drew near, I said loudly, “Hi Callie!” Callie recoiled in horror. She hid her face in her mother’s neck. Cameron tried to soothe her, “Callie, it’s your Aunt Grayson. See, she’s dressed up as a clown for Halloween.” Callie shook her head and wouldn’t look at me. “It’s me, Callie”, I pleaded, “it’s Aunt Grayson!” She kept her face hidden and began to cry, so Cameron took Callie back home.

(Click on this picture to see a larger image)

On the other hand, two of my other nieces, Corinne and Cassie, love clowns. For her 5th birthday party, Cassie requested that Zippy the Clown, who she’d seen at Zilker Park, make balloon animals for her and her friends. Zippy was a total hit among the numerous 5-year olds and their moms. I was mesmerized as Zippy blew up each skinny balloon with his own breath, not a pump. And, despite each painful sounding squeak, screech and squawk, Zippy managed to contort the colored rubber sausages into palm tree hats, heart bracelets, puppy dogs, alligators and more. Callie, now a teenager, would not go outside to watch the show.

When my husband found out I was writing my blog about clowns, he commented, “It’s a tough life trying to make a buck as a clown. Most people clown around all their lives and never get paid for it. By the way, where’d Limpy get his name from? His ex-girlfriend? Makes ya wonder. Frankly, I think clowns are borderline cross-dressers.”

In honor of my niece, Callie, I offer these clown jokes for her personal enjoyment:

1st Cannibal: “How was dinner last night?”
2nd Cannibal: “I had the clown. It tasted kind of funny.”


How do you make a dead clown float?
Take your foot off its head.


What's the difference between a dead cat in the road and a dead clown in the road?
There are skid marks in front of the cat.


Why aren't you allowed to incinerate clowns?
They burn funny.


How do you kill a clown who has big floppy shoes?
With a big floppy sack of door knobs.


What's better than a clown falling out of a window?
Another one below him.


I love you, Callie!!

Keep Clownin’ Around, Y’all!

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