David Bruce: The Funniest People in Families, Volume 4 — Children

Children

• When she was very little, granddaughter Kaulini was the best-ever critic of children’s book author and illustrator Thomas Locker. Whenever he showed her a painting he had created, she would look at it and say, “Oh, wow!” And whenever he showed her a book he had created, she would look at it and say, “Oh, wow!” By the way, you can see photographs of Thomas Locker and his best-ever critic in Mr. Locker’s short autobiography — written for children — The Man Who Paints Nature.

• John Waters, aka the Prince of Puke, is the movie director of such cult gross-outs as Pink Flamingos. As a child, he played Car Accident, a game in which he wrecked his toy cars, then made up dialogue for the bloody and screaming and dying imaginary people in the cars and for the bystanders: “OH, MY GOD, THERE’S BEEN A TERRIBLE ACCIDENT!” He once pleaded to his mother, “Please take me to the junkyard!” She did.

• Geoff Hilton, a young family friend of science fiction writer Anne McCaffrey, was noted for insulting Barbara, his sister. At a dinner during which Geoff had steadily been insulting Barbara, Anne said, “But, Geoff, we all know that the English insult only those they really love.” Geoff thought this over for a moment, then turned to his sister and said, “Barbara, dear, have I told you how marvelous you look?”

• When choreographer George Balanchine was a child growing up in Russia, sugar was expensive and so his mother bought little candy, and the little candy she did buy, she kept locked up and doled out one piece at a time. This may have led to Mr. B’s sweet tooth as an adult. According to Mr. Balanchine, “I used to say to myself, ‘When I grow up, I am going to eat as much sugar and candy as possible.’”

• While in high school, oceanographer Jacques Cousteau was bored, so he broke 17 windows. The high-school authorities were unimpressed by his explanation for his misdeed — he said that he had wanted the windows to look like they had been shot out by a band of marauding cowboys. His parents immediately sent him to a strict boarding school where he matured and improved his grades.

• Erma Bombeck used to lie to her librarian. When Ms. Bombeck was a small child, she often went to the public library and filled up a bag with books to take home and read. Whenever the librarian warned her that a book was too old for her, Ms. Bombeck would lie and say that it was for her mother. Later in life, Ms. Bombeck said that she never regretted lying to the librarian.

• Teenage boys sometimes try to appear macho. Brett, the son of Quaker humorist Tim Mullen, once dressed in an getup that included a shirt that was open to his waist and a chain from which was suspended a macho medallion which resembled a razor blade. Martha, his sister, looked at him and said, “O.H.O.C.” Brett asked what that meant, and Martha replied, “One Hair On Chest.”

• Jerry Mathers was eight years old when he auditioned for a role in the TV series Leave It to Beaver. During the audition, he squirmed around a lot, and when the show’s producers, Bob Mosher and Joseph Connelly, asked what was wrong, he said, “I gotta go to my Cub Scout meeting.” They liked the boyishness of the answer and hired him as the Beaver.

• As a child, computer pioneer Grace Hopper was inquisitive. One day, her mother discovered that Grace had taken apart all seven alarm clocks in the house. Grace explained that she had taken apart one alarm clock to see how it worked, but she couldn’t get it back together, so she had taken apart another one, and so on until all seven alarm clocks lay in pieces.

• Football and basketball referee Ike Craig of Libertyville, Illinois, liked to tell this story about his son, who stood up to a bully. His son told the bully, “I’m not afraid of you, but if I fight you, my Dad will find out and I’ll get a spanking.” The bully asked, “How will he find out?” Mr. Craig’s son replied, “He’ll see the doctor going to your house.”

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Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved

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The Funniest People in Families, Volume 4 — Smashwords (Free Download)

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