Posts Tagged ‘comedy’
James Thurber once suggested that “the most dangerous food is wedding cake.” Maybe not…
Denny’s has just opened a new flagship location in Las Vegas– replete with wedding chapel. And to make one’s special day even more special, “America’s Diner” is offering a special wedding menu, topped by “The King Stack” (“King” as in Elvis): bacon, peanut butter and bananas between two slices of French toast finished off with a bacon vodka chaser.
As Denny’s spokesperson Frances Allen observed, “a normal Denny’s is not going to cut it in Vegas.” Indeed, this newest outlet is located in the quickly-redeveloping Old Downtown district, where it’s neighbors include a zip line that carries visitors above street-level traffic, a restaurant that holds a Guinness Record for the highest-calorie burger, and what is being billed as the world’s largest gay nightclub.
Viva Las Vegas!
As we decide that it’s not so important to wear white after all, we might send lethargic birthday greetings to Steven Alexander Wright; he was born on this date in 1955. An Academy Award winning comedian, actor, and writer, Wright is the king of the deadpan paraprosdokian.
It’s a small world, but I wouldn’t want to paint it…
Laughing Squid reports:
For ECAL’s “Low-Tech Factory” exhibition, design students Laurent Beirnaert, Pierre Bouvier and Paul Tubiana created Oncle Sam, a popcorn machine that pops just one kernel at a time. At the final stages of the process, this contraption even butters and salts the single piece of popcorn that was produced. Watch this video to see the machine in action.
As we turn up the heat, we might pause to send amusing birthday greetings to Al Christie; he was born on this date in 1881. An early motion picture director, producer, screenwriter and studio head, Christie ran the first ever movie studio to be built in Hollywood
(Nestor Studios, opened in 1911) and is credited with having produced the first film comedies there. In all, he produced more than 700 films before retiring in 1942.
Liz Fosslien “likes to turn numbers into pictures and ideas into charts”– from “Crime Patterns in Chicago” to “How to Get Hired,” she’s created infographics galore. Indeed, one of her visual essays is a quiz, “Name that Song“; two sample questions (answers, below):
Take the test here.
# 4- “Sexy and I know” LMFAO
# 8- “No Church in the Wild” Jay-Z and Kanye West
As we bust our beats, we might send birthday smiles to actor, writer and film director Arthur Stanley “Stan” Jefferson… or as he was better known, Stan Laurel; he was born on this date in 1890. Laurel came to the U.S. from his native England as Charlie Chaplin’s understudy in a touring acting troupe. Laurel stayed behind, first as an actor in two-reel comedies, then as a writer-director for Hal Roach. Laurel intended to remain behind the camera, but stepped under the lights again when an accident left Oliver Hardy without a co-star. The two became friends and went on to make first a series of shorts (one of which, The Music Box, won the Academy Award for Best Short in 1932), then features– over 180 films in all. In 1961, four years after Hardy’s death, Laurel was given a Lifetime Achievement Academy Award for his pioneering work in comedy.
If anyone at my funeral has a long face, I’ll never speak to him again.
More of Hudson Hongo’s “One Second Classics” here.
[TotH to Laughing Squid]
As we put aside our envy of Evelyn Wood, we might send boisterous birthday greetings to comic genius Harold Lloyd; he was born on this date in 1893. While your correspondent marginally prefers the extraordinary Buster Keaton, Lloyd has some real claim to being the finest physical comedian of the silent film era (even as his career extended to talkies and radio). Like Keaton, Lloyd did his own stunts– many of them, breathtakingly dangerous. Indeed, after 1919, he appears wearing a prosthetic glove, masking the loss of a thumb and index finger in a bomb explosion at Roach Studios.
Franchising opportunities, circa 1934… more at Retronaut.
As we clear off the kitchen table, we might recall that it was on this date in 1787 that the first professionally-produced theatrical comedy written by an American was produced in the U.S.: Royall Tyler’s The Contrast premiered in New York. The play satirizes Americans who follow British fashions and indulge in “British vices”… ironic insofar as it was written in the manner of English Restoration comedies of the seventeenth century, and modelled on Sheridan’s The School for Scandal, a British comedy of manners that had revived that tradition in London a decade before.