Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Send OUT the Clowns!!!

I have a thing about clowns. Please don't mistake this as a positive "thing". I think that clowns are irritating at best and slightly creepy at worst. There is something about a grown human being decked out in full facial make-up, bright red nose, ridiculously ill-fitting shoes who is attempting to douse me with water, that sets my teeth on edge. I realize that I am probably in the minority on this side of the circus, but clowns piss me off. They are freaky and slightly on the scary side. Mimes are no better. They are just clowns that don't say anything that beg for money! Have you ever seen a small child at a circus? Most of them are crying in horror and scrambling for protection in Mom and Dad's laps when the clown mafia approaches. For years down here in South Florida, one of the local flea markets used to feature a full circus under its roof as a way to draw in customers. I will forgo the obvious animal rights issues of keeping large cats and elephants in a flea market building, but the thing that disturbed me more than Leo the Lion or Jumbo the Elephant in captivity, was the over- eager and very pushy clowns. (Honestly, is there anything lower on the ladder of "clowndom" than working at a flea market on I95?) Whenever it was suggested that we trek up the interstate to show the boys a "fun time", I could feel that knot tie just a bit tighter in the pit of my stomach. I knew that Older Son would grasp my hand a little bit harder, and Younger Son would beg to be carried. This was supposed to be entertaining? Needless to say, we stopped going.

On my first trip to Las Vegas, we were instructed by friends that we "absolutely must" take in the Cirque du Soleil show Mystere at The Mirage. We purchased tickets, but unfortunately they were for the first night that we arrived, and we were all a bit past the point of exhaustion by the time we settled in our seats. (Not a great mood for me to be in to see a circus of any name!) The clowns came out first to warm up the audience. I had the "good fortune" of sitting on the aisle. (I guess given my short stature, The Husband wanted to make certain that I could see the entire show unobstructed.) Within 30 seconds, one of the f*&%#*g clowns zeroed in on me, and started in on his routine. (He must of sensed my seething dismissal of his supposed craft!) When he saw that I wasn't into the game, the asshole stole my shoes! I sat through the entire performance barefoot. I didn't get my shoes back until were headed toward the exits. God, I really hate clowns.

I mention all of this because of a birthday gift. Last week was my birthday and to my surprise and joy, my sons ordered me a floral arrangement. As I went downstairs to the concierge to retrieve it, I was filled with pride (they remembered!) and excitement to see what my gift would look like. Imagine my horror when I spied the balloon attachment. CLOWN!!! I brought the bouquet upstairs and when the boys saw it they were stunned. "That wasn't what we ordered", they cried. Older Son could not stop apologizing for the kevlar nightmare. "Honestly, Mom! I am truly embarrassed by the balloon." I was just so thrilled that they recognized the day, I just waved away his misery, thinking that when the stupid thing ran out of helium, I would remove it from the otherwise stunning arrangement of flowers. Well, here we are 8 full days after the fact and the miserable thing is STILL floating. Observe!

The damn flowers are starting to wilt and fall and that stupid thing is still up there, grinning its evil at me every day! I know I should just take it down, but it was a gift from my boys and I just can't bring myself to do it. Maybe I will give it a little nudge with a pin and cause it to slow leak. Curses to you my white-faced nemesis! 


At approximately 10:32 am EST, I released my nightmare into the wild blue yonder of Hallandale Beach. Clown was last seen floating high above Three Islands Blvd with stupid grin on his face shouting "Free at last, free at last! Thank God almighty, I am free at last!" Good riddance to you, sucker!!


  1. Ha ha I am laughing so hard. I am simply terrified of clowns. AND! This really scary clown balloon turned up in my backyard in Miami this morning. I thought it was a sign from the devil. I'm relieved it was only you. From Jenn Steinberg

  2. Sorry to freak you out Jenn! If I had known, I would have sent it north. Good to hear from you.

  3. Dawn, this was hilarious!!! We have plenty of stories of my kids being scared to death of clowns as well.

    I have to share my Cirque du Soleil in Vegas story. We saw "O" on our first night in Vegas several years ago and my mom, thinking we would have better seats, passed up tickets to the 8:00 show and bought tickets to the 10:30 showing... that's right, 1:30 a.m. for those of us still on East Coast time. Needless to say, we were all passing out. What a colossal waste of money.

  4. Dawn, I was thinking of you quite a bit at Cirque last night. The clowns were rather different than those that bring about your nightmares.

    First, they were talking and not miming... quite a bit. Second, they were behaving like horny school boys. Seriously! The humor was pretty coarse. "Good evening, ladies and peckerheads!" At one point, one of the clowns pretended to die, and another started giving him CPR. The "dying" clown wrapped his arm around the CPR clown and proceeded to give him a kiss, including rolling around on the floor like dogs in heat.

    I guess I'm truly becoming an alta kocker because instead of laughing and enjoying, I kept thinking, "Wow, how inappropriate would this have been had we brought our kids." I always thought Cirque's traveling shows were pretty family friendly, but this was not. Adam suggested that perhaps the evening shows are more risque than the matinee shows.

    Anyway, it was definitely not your usual clown show. Unless you're an alta kocker like me, you might actually have cracked a smile or two!

  5. Karen,
    Thanks for the update. I hope that I am not yet in the Alta kacker bracket, but to me a clown is a clown no matter what he/she says or does. The only clowns that will allow me a laugh are Harpo Marx or Lucy! Now that is true comedy.