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Thursday, October 14, 2010

I'll Be Gentle: A Poessay on Lenny Bruce

A lot of people say to me, 'Why did you kill Christ?' I dunno, it was one of those parties, got out of hand, you know.

If Jesus had been killed twenty years ago, Catholic school children would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks instead of crosses.

The only honest art form is laughter, comedy. You can't fake it... try to fake three laughs in an hour - ha ha ha ha ha - they'll take you away, man. You can't.Lenny Bruce October 13, 1925 – August 3, 1966

Woke up this morning with Lenny Bruce.

Yes, he died in 1966. Four decades later he still shows up in any list of top comedians. I must have caught a few extra winks. The semi-conscious after sleep can be euphoric sometimes. This time upon regaining consciousness a phrase “I’ll be gentle” reverberated. Reason unclear.

That is troubling – this search for meaning. There ought to be a mandatory time when reason should be let go of. (In some cases, admittedly this should only be practiced when the subject is harnessed.)

“I’ll be gentle” are loaded words. Unwary women get bellyful.

Unsuspecting public gets whacked.

Unabashed environmentalists take a SUV (a gas guzzler) to a earth-day demonstration. Unmindful environment continues hurling towards self annihilation. Hurling or Hurtling? In human time measurements both barely register.


“I’ll be gentle” when pronounced is ungentlemanly and callous.

Clear, bold, truthful, earnest, single minded endeavors need no declarations – least of all of faux gentility.

There are exceptions where gentleness ought to be practiced in moderation (like any other behavioral trait.)

When alone – hitting on keyboard – in bed – (where again this exception can merit other exceptions – which could be material for another poessay) – with children, parents and imbeciles, on public transport and in police stations.

And then there are places where gentleness is largely wasted: in boardrooms – with teenagers – in broadcast booths and studios with biased hosts – with friends undergoing separation trauma – when discussing Colombian java with Kahaanites.

I'll be gentle - spare you now (this is another exception for am not being callous nor ungentlemanly - just considerate)


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