Thursday, September 17, 2009
GOODBYE HENRY GIBSON
Another veteran Laugh In cast member is gone. Dear Henry Gibson passed away yesterday one week shy of his 74th birthday. Henry was such a sweet man. I've met him and Joanne Worley as well as my dear friend Arte Johnson. My favorite role of him besides the judge on Boston Legal was his voice work on "Charolette's Web" as Wilbur The Pig. The great Sherman Brothers tune "I Can Talk" comes to mind.
Gibson brought a wonderful warmth and whimsy and a charm to 'Laugh-In.' That went a long way to balance some of the political, satirical and bawdy humor . Laugh In creator sGeorge Schlatter said."Henry was a sweet, gentle man. Any piece we gave to Henry took on a different shape when he read it because he infused his own whimsy and his own gentle intelligence and wit to it."In the show's famous cocktail party scenes, when the music would stop and each cast member would deliver a funny line, Gibson was a religious figure holding a teacup and saucer."My congregation supports all denominations," he said on one show, "but our favorites are twenties and fifties."But Gibson was best known as the poet, holding a large flower and beginning his brief recitations with his signature catchphrase, "A poem, by Henry Gibson.""He wrote all those himself," Jon Gibson said. "It was a point of pride that he only read poems that he himself wrote."During one of his frequent guest appearances on the show, John Wayne spoofed Gibson by coming around the wall holding a flower and delivering "A poem, by John Wayne.""Roses are red, violets are green," Wayne said, "Get off your butt and join the Marines." Funny! Also God love Mary Travers of Peter, Paul and Mary fame who also passed away yesterday at age seventy-two. Who will be celebrity number three? I am amused reading this morning that the Senate has passed a bill that would force Am Track to rescind its mandatory no guns on a train bill. Granted these are guns that you check in your luggage , but you can't take guns on a plane. Why should you be able to take a gun on a train? Okay, lets say that I tell you --the Ticketmaster: "Don't worry, Mr. Am Track employee-- that gun is perfectly disengaged and locked away. Huh! Do you Remember that old song "I Didn't Know The Gun Was Loaded. Oh yes, here's the kicker: If Am Track does not reverse its policy, it will lose a 1.6 billion dollar government subsidy-- (OMG) wait a minute-- Am Track is owned by the government. It's penalizing itself. Isn't that like saying to your manhood-- "Give me what I want or I'm going to cut you off!" Maybe this is the same guy who wants to fine us $3800.00 for not having health insurance! We don't accomplish progress by shooting ourselves in the foot! If you're fining yourself 1.6 billion ddollars to be paid to yourself -- who does that help, including yourself! Guess what happens when 1.6 billion dollars is paid by you-- to yourself. Except, the sharp pencil boys in Am Track won't think of that and they'll lay off God only knows how many train engineeers, conductors and the lowly train ticket seller at Union station-- In order to compensate for paying something that is making a round trip journey from self to self! Mark Twain and Will Rogers would have had a field day with this one. Even a re-hashed Dan Quayle wouldn't be this good a target! Look, the Constitution says that citizens shall have the right to bear arms-- that doesn't mean OWN any arms. The word OWN and the word BEAR has two different meanings in the dictionary. look it up! And in no place in that definition does it say anything about having the right to transport the damn thing on a train! Train/ plane-- locked up/ not locked up. Disengaged or able to fire one last forgotten bullet when the damn locomotive hits a rough spot on the track. What if that suitcase with that one forgotten bullet is right next to a stored in the baggage department extra oxygen tank that a disabled person is taking with her or him? Lets get to the business of fixing this recession before we worry that somebody is not going to have the right to transport a gun on their travels. Oh my! Oh dear! Priorities please, priorities!