Comedian Red Skelton was a huge star on stage and in the early days of Television. He was known as America’s Clown Prince. His jokes and stories were inventive and the entire family could get a laugh together.
The Red Skelton Show aired on NBC from 1951 until 1971. At that time, Red fine-tuned the format of a variety show that would be the model well until the 1980s. Shows like Hee-Haw, The Carol Burnett Show, and The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and many others used the same television show format until the early 1980s. His show had been one of the top ten highest-rated television shows 17 of the 20 seasons it appeared on television.
Recipe for a Perfect Marriage
This was part of an opening monolog that Red would do during the opening act for the Red Skelton Show. This set of tips and circumstances are found in some form or another in just about every marriage.
1. Two times a week we go to a nice restaurant, have a little beverage, good food and companionship. She goes on Tuesdays, I go on Fridays.
2. We also sleep in separate beds. Hers is in California and mine is in Texas.
3. I take my wife everywhere, but she keeps finding her way back.
4. I asked my wife where she wanted to go for our anniversary. “Somewhere I haven’t been in a long time!” she said. So I suggested the kitchen.
5. We always hold hands. If I let go, she shops.
6. She has an electric blender, electric toaster, and electric bread maker. She said, “There are too many gadgets and no place to sit down!” So I bought her an electric chair.
7. My wife told me the car wasn’t running well because there was water in the carburetor. I asked where the car was. She told me, “In the lake.”
8. She got a mudpack and looked great for two days. Then the mud fell off.
9. She ran after the garbage truck, yelling, “Am I too late for the garbage?” The driver said, “No, jump in!”.
10. Remember: Marriage is the number one cause of divorce.
11. I married Miss Right. I just didn’t know her first name was ‘Always’.
12. I haven’t spoken to my wife in 18 months. I don’t like to interrupt her.
13. The last fight was my fault though. My wife asked, “What’s on the TV?”I said, “Dust!”.
The Legacy of Red Skelton
Before rising to prominence in TV, Red Skelton was on the radio and a movie actor appearing in more than 40 films. He had his start in his early years performing in medicine shows, circus acts, and vaudeville. One aspect that not too many people know is that Skelton was an active working artist. He painted over 1,000 oil paintings of clowns. It’s said his income from lithograph copies of his paintings netted him more money than acting. At the time of his death in 1977 is original oils went for $80,000 and up.
Red Skelton’s compositions total 4,000 songs and 64 symphonies. He conducted and created numerous CDs, and his works were performed by artists such as Arthur Fiedler, the London Philharmonic, and Van Clyburn. In addition, many of his works were purchased by Muzak for use as background music in workplaces and elevators. He is credited with over 8,000 songs and symphonies at the time of his death. Skelton died on September 17, 1997, at the age of 84.