Sunday, August 06, 2006

Lenny Bruce- Comic Genius and Crusader of Truth

I was just reading back on my blog about the death of good comedy and whilst writing about Bill Hicks and Eddie Izzard, I completely forgot about Lenny Bruce. Although he does cut a tragic figure due to his death from heroin abuse at the age of 40, it must be noted that he was the fore runner for telling the truth in the form of stand up comedy- and paying dearly for it. I found a list of quotes on Wikipedia so here they... prepare to piss your pants and be amazed.
  • The only honest art form is laughter, comedy. You can't fake it...try to fake three laughs in an hour--ha ha ha ha ha--they'll take you away, man. You can't.
  • If you live in New York, even if you're Catholic, you're Jewish.
  • If you're going to stop masturbating, you can't "taper off." You've got to quit, cold jerky!
  • A Jew, in the dictionary, is one who is descended from the ancient tribes of Judea, or one who is regarded as a descendant from that tribe. That's what it says in the dictionary, but you and I know what a Jew is: One Who Killed Our Lord... there should be a statute of limitations for that crime.
  • A lot of people say to me, "Why did you kill Christ?" I dunno... it was one of those parties that got out of hand, you know?
  • Since they condone capital punishment, I want them to stop bitching about Jesus getting nailed up.
  • If Jesus had been killed twenty years ago, Catholic school children would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks instead of crosses.
  • Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God.
  • If white America told the truth for one day, its whole world would fall apart.
  • I didn't do it, man, I only said it.
    • To police on the occasion of his arrest for saying "cocksucker" at San Francisco's Jazz Workshop, 1961
  • A knowledge of syphilis is not an instruction to get it.
  • I want to perform an unnatural act.
    • Lenny as the Lone Ranger, in Thank You Masked Man
  • "Sex" and "obscenity" are not synonymous.
  • If something about the human body disgusts you, the fault lies with [God] the manufacturer.
  • It's the suppression of the word that gives it the power, the violence, the viciousness.
  • Are there any niggers here tonight? Could you turn on the house lights, please, and could the waiters and waitresses just stop serving, just for a second? And turn off this spot. Now what did he say? "Are there any niggers here tonight?" I know there's one nigger, because I see him back there working. Let's see, there's two niggers. And between those two niggers sits a kike. And there's another kike— that's two kikes and three niggers. And there's a spic. Right? Hmm? There's another spic. Ooh, there's a wop; there's a polack; and, oh, a couple of greaseballs. And there's three lace-curtain Irish micks. And there's one, hip, thick, hunky, funky, boogie. Boogie boogie. Mm-hmm. I got three kikes here, do I hear five kikes? I got five kikes, do I hear six spics, I got six spics, do I hear seven niggers? I got seven niggers. Sold American. I pass with seven niggers, six spics, five micks, four kikes, three guineas, and one wop. Well, I was just trying to make a point, and that is that it's the suppression of the word that gives it the power, the violence, the viciousness. Dig: if President Kennedy would just go on television, and say, "I would like to introduce you to all the niggers in my cabinet," and if he'd just say "nigger nigger nigger nigger nigger" to every nigger he saw, "boogie boogie boogie boogie boogie," "nigger nigger nigger nigger nigger" 'til nigger didn't mean anything anymore, then you could never make some six-year-old black kid cry because somebody called him a nigger at school.
    • From Julian Barry's screenplay for "Lenny"
  • Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers will allow you to satirize it. Which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it.
  • Take away the right to say fuck and you take away the right to say fuck the government.
  • The liberals can understand everything but people who don't understand them.
  • The "what should be" never did exist, but people keep trying to live up to it. There is no "what should be," there is only what is.
  • I'm sorry if I wasn't very funny tonight. Sometimes I'm not. I'm not a comedian. I'm Lenny Bruce.
  • Communism is like one big phone company. If you get too rank with them, you'll wind up with a dixie cup and a thread.
  • You can't put tits and ass on the marquee!...Why not?...Because it's dirty and vulgar, that's why not!... Titties are dirty and vulgar?...Okay, we'll compromise. How about Latin? Gluteus maximus, pectoralis majors nightly...That's alright, that's clean, class with ass, I'll buy it...Clean to you, schmuck, but dirty to the Latins!
  • There are never enough "I love you's."
  • I want the Supreme Court to stand up and tell me that fucking is dirty and no good.
  • I want to help you if you have a dirty word problem. There are none.
  • I don't want every break in the world. I just want justice.
  • If you can take the hot lead enema, then you can cast the first stone.



2 comments:

Quick said...

Thank you for leaving a comment on my blog. There is a reply explaining how I came across your blog, if you feel like dropping by again.

My favourite Lenny line here is the one about if Jesus had died 20 years ago Catholics would be wearing little tiny electric chairs around their necks. Brilliant.

There was a sadness there though, wasn't there. That line where he apologises for sometimes just being Lenny Bruce.

I found the song for Sophie post as moving as the Lenny Bruce one was amusing.

he who is known as sefton said...

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Maybe, just maybe, you're wondering how come you're so privileged as to receive this communiqué. Well, answer is simple, thanks to http://search.blogger.com/?ui=blg&q=Lenny+Bruce, I found the u.r.l to your website.

After perusing your website, I conjectured you'd be interested in my post titled, "sweetest nookie". In this post, you'll find some notions about how Lenny, were he around today, might comment about the recent kerfuffle in the Middle East.

Anyway, you'll find the hyperlink to the post just below

toodles

http://hewhoisknownassefton.blogspot.com/2006/08/sweetest-nookie.html