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Word for the Wise October 13, 2006 Broadcast Topic: Lenny Bruce

Leonard Alfred Schneider was born on October 13, 1925. The comedian and social satirist whose arrests and insistence on free speech helped establish his notoriety is better remembered, of course, as Lenny Bruce. (来源:EnglishCN.com)

More than 40 years after his death, we remember Lenny Bruce with a few words of his own.

Some of his humor was era-specific. "Communism," he observed, "is like one big phone company." And "All my humor is based on destruction and despair. If the whole world were tranquil, without disease and violence, I'd be standing on the breadline, right in back of J. Edgar Hoover."

Other comments could have been written yesterday. "Every day," Bruce promised us, "people are straying away from the church and going back to God." And, "Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers will allow you to satirize it. Which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it."

Finally, we'll follow up an observation from Lenny Bruce with a remembrance from writer Dick Schaap after Bruce's early death. "Life," according to Lenny Bruce, "is a four-letter word." Schaap wrote: "At last, one final four-letter word for Lenny Bruce. Dead. At forty. That's obscene."

 
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