Free invisible hit counter ProfShade: The Face of a Clown<sup>1</sup>...

Thursday, December 16, 2004

The Face of a Clown1...

The image and underlying metaphor of a clown are more complex and troubling than one might initially imagine. The object of clowning is, of course, to produce laughter. We all equate laughter with joy, but in our hasty chuckle, we often forget that we belly-laugh as a release from fear or discomfort in many cases. This might explain the reason why so many people are in fact uncomfortable with the grease-paint visage of the circus clown. We instinctively know that beneath the brightly colored swaths of exaggerated and happy-painted facial expressions lies the darker nature of man, and recoil reflexively in the knowledge that at the drop of a top hat the paint can come off and the real horror will be revealed, unbuffered and raw...that, and at the tender age of seven 'Bo-Bo' wantonly molested me backstage prior to my appearance on Bozo's Circus.


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1. Yes, now I have that Smokey Robinson pop-ditty stuck in my head... Given the panopoly of 'face painters' we've produced in this society, from Al Jolson, John Wayne Gacy, Michael Jackson, Gene Simmons to John Kerry, you wonder why we don't just piss our pants every time Barnum and Bailey comes to town.