Letters to the Editor, Jan. 20 - 23

Comedy is no

laughing matter

EDITOR: The comedian is the politician’s greatest enemy. Comedy thrives on hypocrisy. The king requires the court jester. The poet laureate must walk a fine line. He must make his Highness laugh without causing any jewels to fall from thy crown, lest thou lose thy head. No joking about age, politics or hair color, no direct references to the truth, vague commentary. The jester may reference the minutes, on second thought, it is best to just beat around the bush.

I never really appreciated politics until I developed a love for comedy. There needs to be a court jester in the House. We need one as part of the staff, a kind of back to the future, head them off at the past. A professional clown, who puts the amateurs out of work.

The spirit at the center of comedy and tragedy are the same. In one instant it is tragic; in the next it is comic. Someday we will all look back at this and laugh. For example, take your divorce, then look at your new spouse and remember the trill of your first marriage. At first, it’s not funny, but you give it a little time, next thing you know you’re shaking your head laughing.

Did you hear the one about the comedian who caught his wife laughing with another man? In acknowledgment of her betrayal she said, “It was an old joke.” The comedian responded, “It is still not funny.” She responded, “Yeah, but he tells it so poorly.” The comedian looked at her and said, “That’s why I love you.” There is only one thing worse than a bad joke and that’ a bad joke told poorly. Sometimes it’s so bad you laugh out of courtesy.

Comedians are struck by the enthusiasm with which politicians approach the creative process. It’s like watching a bull rider who gets off in eight seconds. Maybe the reason their having prolonged difficulties is they started with a poor choice. The porn industry has higher standards. Politicians need to make better choices. Politicos are not Mexican lobbyists.

I hereby nominate David Steinberg as Jester of the House, and Charlie Rose as his assistant to tell them when to laugh and when to clap. A sharpshooter will shoot the first to laugh, smile or shuffle his feet, no one shall be caught staring into space. The penalty for realism will be a vacation between 1938 and 1945. This will be like snow, if you get my drift.

We are losing our great comedians. Recently we lost Joan Rivers and Robin Williams. Sometimes I have the pleasure of running into Tommy Smothers. Tommy has the gift, he is fun to talk with, and still loves to make people laugh. I like it even more when he laughs. Laughter is a form of intimacy, comedians are special people. They break the ice and we laugh like regular people, and the gift is that for a few moments we don’t take ourselves so seriously.

Eric Heine

Glen Ellen

Every dog has

its pray

EDITOR: This lovely piece was sent to me by a friend from a newspaper in Oklahoma:

“A Pet’s Prayer”

Treat me kindly, my beloved master, for no heart in all the world is more grateful for kindness than mine. Do not break my spirit with a stick, or although I should lick your hand between blows, your patience and understanding will teach me more quickly the things you would have me do.

Speak to me often, for your voice is the world’s sweetest music, as you must know by the fierce wagging of my tail when I hear your step.

When the weather is cold and wet, please, take me inside for I am a domesticated animal, no longer used to bitter elements, and I ask no greater glory than the privilege of sitting at your feet.

Keep my pan filled with fresh water, for although I should not reproach you were it dry, I cannot tell you when I suffer thirst.

Feed me clean food, so that I may stay well, to romp and play and do your bidding, to walk by your side, standing ready to protect you with my life should your life be in danger.

And master, when I am very old, if the Greatest Master sees fit to deprive me of my health and sight, do not turn me away… Rather, see that my trusting life is taken gently, and I shall leave you knowing with the last breath I draw, my fate was always safe in your hands.

Anita Martincich