Tuesday, April 29, 2014

My Funny Men

It doesn't matter if you're a six-foot-tall Calvin Klein model, if you can't make me laugh there's just no chance, buddy. (Unless you're Colin Firth, he always gets all the chances.)

A man who can make me laugh is better than one with riches, great confidence, intelligence, athleticism, anything. David and I have been through times of plenty and not so plenty, times of joy and times of struggle, but no matter what we've always been able to get through with the help of a little laughter. David sings, and parts his hair down the middle, and talks in accents, and cracks corny jokes - he makes me laugh every day and it makes all the difference.

My love for funny men came about from the geniuses I grew up watching next to my sisters, snuggled together on the couch. Those are some of my fondest memories. And whether together or countries apart, we're always quoting our favorite lines.

For me, it's gotta be the classics. Who are your favorite funny men?

Billy Crystal
I've gotta start with Billy because we're currently watching "700 Sundays," his HBO special and it was the inspiration for this piece. I fell for Billy in "When Harry Met Sally" (DUH) and "City Slickers." I loved his sarcasm, his wonky voice, his bite-size size. I loved how he wasn't Mr. Handsome or charming, he just seemed like a regular guy you knew, some guy who used to date your sister or second cousin. Even now, years later, he's still hilarious and quite a storyteller. David is pretty hard to please when it comes to comedy and he has been cackling at the special all evening. It makes me so happy to see him smiling on my TV.

Favorite movie quote: "Had my dream again where I'm making love, and the Olympic judges are watching. I'd nailed the compulsories, so this is it, the finals. I got a 9.8 from the Canadians, a perfect 10 from the Americans, and my mother, disguised as an East German judge, gave me a 5.6. Must have been the dismount." -Harry Burns, "When Harry Met Sally"

Steve Martin
Don't tell the rest but Steve is my favorite. "Father of the Bride" quite literally shaped my childhood expectations for parenting, tennis shoe companies, backyard weddings, and meeting successful/ handsome bankers while traveling in Europe in your early 20s. Steve's physical comedy is what struck me from the beginning - I'd never seen a joke carry from someone's words to a swinging movement of his hips or flailing arms. It was mesmerizing to watch him. Through other movies I loved, "Father of the Bride, Part Two," and "Three Amigos" and "Parenthood," etc., I realized this wasn't just a great role or two; this was Steve Martin himself. There is just something so warm about him (even when he's playing a jerk in "Shop Girl") - and his banjo playing is incredible!

Favorite movie quote: "I'll tell you what I'm doing. I want to buy eight hot dogs and eight hot dog buns to go with them. But no one sells eight hot dog buns. They only sell twelve hot dog buns. So I end up paying for four buns I don't need. So I am removing the superfluous buns. Yeah. And you want to know why? Because some big-shot over at the wiener company got together with some big-shot over at the bun company and decided to rip off the American public. Because they think the American public is a bunch of trusting nit-wits who will pay for everything they don't need rather than make a stink. Well they're not ripping of this nitwit anymore because I'm not paying for one more thing I don't need. George Banks is saying NO!" - George Banks, "Father of the Bride"

Robin Williams
OK so Robin has less of the fatherly vibe and and more of the oddball uncle feel but who doesn't love their oddball uncle? From classic comedic roles like "Miss Doubtfire" to sob-inducing dramas like "Patch Adams" and "Dead Poets Society," Robin is consistently witty, relatable, emotional, and sassy. He, too, uses physical comedy to deepen his jokes and make that much more of an impact. I always loved the dramatic flair he worked into his roles - impersonating an elderly european housekeeper, donning a red nose to cheer up pediatric patients, and inspiring young boys to change charge of their lives. He taught me it was OK to laugh, even when you're uncomfortable or heartbroken. And Lord knows I have carried that like a torch for all my days.

Favorite movie quote: 

-Mrs. Doubtfire: "Sink the sub. Hide the weasel. Park the porpoise. A bit of the old Humpty Dumpty, Little Jack Horny, the Horizontal Mambo, hmm? The Bone Dancer, Rumpleforeskin, Baloney Bop, a bit of the old Cunning Linguistics?"

: "Mrs. Doubtfire, please."
-Mrs. Doubtfire: "Oh I'm sorry, am I being a little graphic? I'm sorry. Well, I hope you're up for a little competition. She's got a power tool in the bedroom, dear. It's her own personal jackhammer. She could break sidewalk with that thing. She uses it and the lights dim, it's like a prison movie. Amazed she hasn't chipped her teeth."


"I was going for a kind of a refugee motif. You know, 'fleeing my homeland' kind of thing. But look at you. This lovely Dances With Wolves motif. What's your Indian name, Shops With A Fist?" -Daniel Hillard, "Mrs. Doubtfire"


"IT WAS A DRIVE-BY FRUITING!" -Mrs. Doubtfire, "Mrs. Doubtfire"

Ah, they don't make 'em like they used to.



Deforest Bouve said...

Oh my gosh I'm cracking up ,,, I love this Lia !! great job. 😄
I think I need to lighten mine up a bit.

DoshTate said...

I would add Kevin Klein (French Kiss: you know, Bub. Bub Deelan). Also, Steve Martin and his banjo live - AMAZING. Life bucket list item, right there. We watched Billy's "700 Sundays" last week in lieu of church. God was laughing right along with us.