Tuesday, October 27, 2015

You Bet Your Life

I didn’t grow up in the United States, so much of my retro-knowledge, when it comes to popular culture, was acquired retroactively. Re-runs and YouTube contributed greatly to making me relate to the shared memories of Americans, including those from times that preceded my time on this earth.

I’m a fan of This Day in History. Goodness, we now see that Google has made a fetish of it with their daily tributes to such on their logo. So I’m not apologizing, but sounding the drum roll for this. Ready?

On this day, in 1947, YOU BET YOUR LIFE radio program premiered with Groucho Marx.


Ta-Da!

If you don’t know who he was, it’s not too late. Google and search YouTube, and you can thank me later. But just for today, October the 27th, I will wet your appetite with some awesome quotations, some specifically from that program. These will dispel any notion that popular culture has little value.



“A black cat crossing your path signifies that the animal is going somewhere.”

“Age is not a particularly interesting subject. Anyone can get old. All you have to do is live long enough.”

“Chicolini here may talk like an idiot and look like an idiot, but don't let that fool you. He really is an idiot.”

“I have nothing but confidence in you, and very little of that.”

“I sent the club a wire stating, PLEASE ACCEPT MY RESIGNATION. I DON'T WANT TO BELONG TO ANY CLUB THAT WILL ACCEPT ME AS A MEMBER.”

“Before I speak, I have something important to say.”

“I intend to live forever, or die trying.” 



Groucho died thirty years later. But his perverse take lives on. These nuggets of not-much contain more insight to the machinations of the human psyche than many philosophy books taught at great universities.

10 comments:

  1. I don't remember watching the tv version of this show, although it's likely my family did watch. Nor do I remember the duck that descended when contestants said the secret word. (Heh, that's something I think I would remember, as a kid.)

    When I took a class in Wit and Humour, Groucho was one of the few comedians that the entire class found witty. (Robin Williams and Mark Twain were the others).

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  2. I used to watch this show with my parents who would laugh and laugh at the one liners. At the time I was too young to get the humor of it but thought Groucho's expressions were hilarious.

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  3. Like you, I've missed much of Americana as an immigrant. Thanks for these gems!

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  4. These quotes are definitely entertaining. He had a way with words. ;)

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  5. I used to listen to it on radio when I was a kid. He was very humorous.

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  6. Oh too funny. I remember him. My parents are a little on the older side, so I got acquainted with the celebrities from the 30s on. Fun stuff.

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  7. These are wonderful, Mirka. Thanks so much for sharing. : )

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  8. He was hilarious. I don't know much about old American films and personalities but I had the wildest pleasure of watching The Marx Brothers in Á Night at the Opera for a film module in university.

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  9. I used to like to watch his Bet Your Life TV show when I was a kid even though I didn't understand a lot of his humor. I still thought he was pretty funny.

    Watching reruns years later I've come to appreciate his humor more. That was a great show.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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  10. Loved him and his show. I also enjoyed his Marx Brother's movies. He also did a show called "Why A Duck"?

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