Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Wit of Groucho Marx

"Next time I see you, remind me not to talk to you"

People seem to like being insulted by Groucho, and he had the knack to dish it out.

Julius Henry "Groucho" Marx was an American film star and comedian famous for his quick wit and rapid fire delivery of maliciously laced spiels. Outside the movie studios his impromptu antics often found friends at the end of his witty comebacks and insulting repartee, much to their public embarrassment. Even his family was not spared.

Often diverting from the written script, Groucho was known as a loose cannon and notorious for saying almost anything that came to mind. At a show hosted by Bob Hope, he decided again to ignore the script. Although a formidable ad-libber himself, Bob Hope could not keep up with Groucho's barrage of improvise jokes.

To an annoying woman he said, ''I never forget a face, but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception.''

A wealthy lady once pulled up in a car and endeavored to persuade the gardener to come work for her. Unknown to her, the "gardener" was Groucho dressed in a well worn out attire. 

"How much does the lady of the house pay you?" She ask.
"Oh, I don't get paid in dollars," not bothering to look up from his work Groucho replied, "the lady of the house just lets me sleep with her."

Then there is the urban legend that has been going around. The story goes that among the many interviewed by Groucho Marx for the show "You bet your life" was a certain contestant, who claimed to have given birth to nine children. (some say 17, others 22)

"I love my husband " was her way of explaining the reason.
"I love my cigar too," Groucho replied, "but I take it out once in a while."

Although he didn't believe in the occult, Groucho Marx was once persuaded into attending a seance. He sat in respectful silence while the Swami stared into a crystal ball, brought forth the departed souls from the beyond and answered queries from the seance participant in an eerie monotone.

After a long spell of indistinct enunciation, the sorcerer finally intoned, "My medium is growing tired. There is only time for one more question."
Without a moments hesitation Groucho riposte, "Ask it what the capital of North Dakota is?"

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