Guess What Week It Is, Kiddies? Bozo

Let's start off "International Clown Week" with a little story I love to tell.  It happened to my friend, G-Man, the husband of "The Blonde" that is occasionally mentioned on this blog.

First off, G-Man is a great guy, a middle school principal, and a jock.  Played college baseball.  Has run marathons.  Loves sports.  Plays sports.  Is GOOD at sports.

But G-Man choked.  ONCE.  When it counted.

And good friends will NEVER let you forget when you humiliated yourself on live television.

I will tell you the legend as it has been passed down to me.  Occasionally, I will need to interject G-Man's side of the story.  That will be denoted by text formatted **like this** .


Chicago had The Bozo Show.  Sure, most other cities had them in the 60's and 70's.  Did yours run until 2001?  No?  Then HUSH.  Tickets were extremely hard to come by, but G-Boy's mom scored him some for his fifth birthday **but in my head, I was still four**.

As part of the show, there was "The Grand Prize Game" which was a series of 6 buckets that a specially chosen girl and bow would try to toss a ping pong ball into.  The further you got, the better your prize.  Make bucket #1 (it was the size of a vat, and even if you missed, you got to try again.) and you and your "at home player" won some crappy Colorforms, but score bucket #6, and you win a new bike.

The magic arrows start swooping around, and wouldn't you know it, but our very own G-Boy is picked and whisked up on stage.  G-Lad, take it from here.  **Ok.  It's my birthday, and I get grabbed by a bunch of clowns and rushed up on stage.  Bozo is like the 6 foot monster towering over you.  The lights are blinding.  You can't see Cookie.  He's off camera going, 'You're gonna miss kid.'**

The scene looked a lot like this:

And then what happened?


What?  Speak up?

**I missed bucket #2 alright.  You don't understand the pressure.**

And your at home player?  Did the "at home player" ever hunt you down and kick your ass?

**That was a fear, yes.**

Now, I see some of you studying the picture up there, and thinking, "That the second bucket is pretty far out there.  There's no shame in missing that."  Au contraire mon fraire.  Look very closely.  Right behind the huge bucket, you can just catch sight of bucket #2.  Yeah, it's that close.

Over the years, G-Man has gotten all sorts of Bozo stuff from his friends.  A lamp really sticks out in my mind.  And then there was the time that I had some fun with the U.S. mail.  Along with the "Grand Prize Game" picture above I printed the following pictures off onto postcards, filled them out, and them sent them to friends all around the country for them to mail to G-Man.

This one, I printed across 1 sheet (4 postcards) so that it came like a puzzle.

I'm still slightly offended that when the Bozo Blizzard started arriving, I wasn't the prime suspect.  Oh, I was a SUSPECT, but not the PRIME SUSPECT.

You know, it's been a while since then…  >;-)


Cora said...

I don't know if we had The Bozo Show in the 70's, but we had The JP Patches and Gertrude Show ~ http://cleaverb.org/retro/grewupwith/images/Jpgertr.jpg ~ and when I was five they did a show at the mall.

I got picked out of the crowd to get a prize on stage (they said, "if you're on your daddy's shoulders and you've got curly rrrrrrrred haaaaaaaaaair, come on up, sweetie!") and I had to go up and shake the hands of those two clownified men (who were really quite scary-looking up close) and I was terrified, but then they gave me a Snoopy paint-by-numbers kit and let me go.

Thank God I didn't have to throw a ping pong ball into anything or else I probably would have been the lame ass kid who just stands there crying for no reason! 'Cuz those dudes were frightening up close and in my face. Yeesh!

SkylersDad said...

We didn't have Bozo, we had Blinky's fun club. Blinky wasn't a clown per say, more of a hobo who smelled of Nightrain and broken dreams.

J.J. said...

I stand corrected, Bozo scared the crap out of me. Thanks for the memories. ; )

Lisa said...

omg. that's priceless....

thanks for the giggles. great story!

and kudos for rubbing it in and involving people from around the globe.

well played my friend.
very well played.

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