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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

March
12
2009
5:15 am
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today I bring you another fantastic Guest Post by none other than the great and powerful Golf Widow

This is my second guest post from her – you can buy one too!  Just go check her out.  Or check out the first guest post about Obama.  heh heh heh.  Hmm, that was almost exactly a year ago…

Anyway, here you go!


Guest posting is kind of like ventriloquism. My voice is over here, but I threw it here from over there, and it’s coming out of a completely unexpected place, which is confusing both to the regular readers of my blog and the regular readers of this blog.

I KNOW. Weird, huh?

Anyway, I have been fascinated by ventriloquists since I was a tiny kid. Not enough to become one. Like most sports fans, I love the game, but have no talent for playing it, myself.

If I were old enough, I’d be telling you about how much I loved Señor Wences and Edgar Bergen, but I’m not. They were my parent’s ventriloquists. Although my dad also admitted to liking Wayland Flowers and Madam. (I say “admitted,” not because HE was ashamed of liking them, but because my mom always SAID she thought Wayland Flowers was disgusting … even though she was always laughing her arse off when she said it.)

Anyway, I was the next generation. My first (and still favorite of all time) ventriloquist was Shari Lewis. She didn’t use hard dummies. She had loveable socks on her hands that talked like horses and dogs …

… and lambs.

Lamb Chop, specifically. Damn, I loved Lamb Chop.

Not on the kid shows as much; she was okay then, but Lamb Chop especially rocked my world when she was mixing with grown-ups: hosting “Evening at the Improv” or being on the panel of the “Gong Show” (“Why’d you gong him, Shari?” “Oh, I thought he wasn’t bad –” and then Lamb Chop would interrupt and say, “I HATED HIM!” and I’d be hysterically laughing. That’s powerful mojo, that is).

I was a grown-up myself when “Lamb Chop’s Play Along” started, but I watched it anyway. I taught my friends’ kids to sing “The Song That Doesn’t End” and sang “It’s Betcha Time” to babies, because babies seem to respond really well to it.

I was at my parents’ house, enjoying a perfectly companionable evening with my mother and watching a rerun of A&E’s “Biography” about Shari Lewis, until Karen Stone came on for the after-program commentary to explain that the rerun was being aired because Shari had passed away. I, literally, burst into shocked tears, as one does when one hears a close friend or family member has died suddenly. Which was the case, I suppose — I had known her almost my whole life, after all, though I never met her.

But that was years after the fact. In between were other ventriloquists. Jay Johnson and Bob. Willie Tyler and Lester.

I also loved Ronn Lucas and Scorch, his dragon. I used to see them on “Match Game” or on the occasional talk show, but nowhere else, really. I was bigger, but not old enough to go to Vegas.

I must have seen Jeff Dunham around the same time, because when I encountered Dunham again on Comedy Central, a decade or so later, I said to That Man of Mine, “I think I know this guy. If it’s the one I’m thinking of, he has a purple puppet with only one shoe, and a jalapeño pepper on a stick.”

A what?” That Man of Mine said.

Just watch,” I said.


Jeff Dunham from loukia nitsos on Vimeo.

And That Man of Mine went from being a ventrilophobe (thanks to that “Twilight Zone” episode, many of my friends are afraid of ventriloquist dummies) to being a crazy huge fan of Jeff Dunham and, subsequently, Terry Fator.

I love Terry Fator and all, but he’s almost too talented. He doesn’t throw HIS voice, he throws OTHER PEOPLE’S voices. I keep fearing I’ll find out he’s the ventriloquist equivalent of Milli Vanilli and he’s got Etta James records playing offstage when he does his Emma Taylor routine.

So Jeff Dunham has pretty much become my go-to dummy straight-man, and I’m not alone … he’s previously been voted “Funniest Male Stand-Up Comic” by Comedy Central and came in third, two years running, in their “Stand-Up Showdown.”

I don’t write fan fiction, not because my brain doesn’t bend that way, but because fan fiction is, bottom line, about being judged. Someone finds a plot inconsistency and trashes you. The real fans, they LOOK for stuff to trash you on. It’s what makes their lives fun.

However, I thought I would try my hand at some fan fiction, wherein Jeff Dunham would meet Mallory Lewis (Shari’s daughter, a ventriloquist who has taken over her mother’s reign and bills herself as “Lamb Chop’s Sister), and see how their puppets would interact.

It was a fiasco.

  • Lamb Chop recognized Walter’s sweater as one of her long-ago sheared coats, and refused to speak to him for the rest of the night.
  • Achmed was terrified that Hush Puppy would bury one of his bones.
  • Peanut called Charlie Horse a jackass.

Then Ronn Lucas crashed the party and Scorch turned Jose Jalapeño into a chipotle.

So that didn’t work out for me, either. But I’m content to be over here on the sidelines, enjoying these performers and their little counterparts confusing people into saying stuff like, “I wonder why Sweet Daddy Dee isn’t representing Jeff Dunham anymore.”

And lo, the people did comment thus:

34 Comments

  1. Sybil Law says:

    Thanks for that link and the laugh!!!
    Ventriloquists always kinda gave me withe willies, too -and it has nothing to do with The Twilight Zone. Still – they can be funny, too…

    Sybil Law´s last blog post..20. Really?!

  2. Cosmic says:

    I love Jef-fa-fa and friends but peanut is my favorite. As for Terry Fator, he is in a clas of his own. What a fantastic voice. But all in all, as you, I was first won over by Sherry. Lamb Chop was adorable.

  3. Heidi says:

    I love Shari Lewis so incredibly much. I sobbed when she passed away and still miss watching her show every morning before school and work.

    This is the song that doesn’t end, yes it goes on and on my friend…

    Heidi´s last blog post..null

  4. awittykitty says:

    Oh geeze, I didn’t even know Sherry Lewis was gone. She was definitely part of my childhood too. My friend in NY produced a one man show on Broadway with Jay Johnson a couple of years ago. Of course with a ventriliquist its never REALLY a one man show, is it? 🙂

    awittykitty´s last blog post..(s)he’s just not that into you

  5. l'empress says:

    I was surprised you didn’t mention Lamb Chop’s visit to “The Nanny,” in which she walked off with Mr. Sheffield, leaving both Shari and Fran standing there with their mouths open.
    Senor Wences would have loved Shari.

    l’empress´s last blog post..Your Medical History

  6. Shawna says:

    You love Lambchop??? I sleep with my stuffed Lambchop every night! She just got her first bath last week and survived.

  7. XChequer says:

    Nice post, I had forgotten Lamb Chop. It was kinda like eating something that you haven’t had since you were four years old and all of a sudden you remember, not only why you liked it in the first place, but everything that was special around you when you had it.

    XChequer´s last blog post..Putting It Together

  8. XChequer says:

    I have, Whall. Good movie!

    XChequer´s last blog post..Putting It Together

  9. “Silence! I keel you!” 🙂

    My oldest grew up watching Lamb Chop and I was also so sad when I heard the news about Shari Lewis all those years ago. Loved her “Song That Never Ends.”

    BlondeBlogger´s last blog post..I’m Like a Ringleader…

  10. quin browne says:

    i loved lamb chop, too. the rest, not so much….except for the guy who was on ‘soap’… i always remember him using a grapefruit as a dummy.

    quin browne´s last blog post..Northern Ireland and Me

  11. sue says:

    I loved Lamb Chop as well and remember how shocked I was to hear of the death. Almost as shocked as hearing our local children’s program ventriliquist, Duane Elliot and Floppy… an Iowa icon for years and years.

    • golfwidow says:

      I’m just so glad that Mally Lewis has inherited her mother’s talent. You don’t usually get a second chance to enjoy a character when the original performer has passed away.

      golfwidow´s last blog post..heidi, hi

  12. marilyn says:

    Walter’s my favorite. I think I’m related to him.

    marilyn´s last blog post..Manic Monday: Party

  13. Debbi Lord says:

    I think Walter is reincarnated of my Dad.

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