Thought to ponder

We all know jokes need to be created and used with the audience in mind.  Some jokes should be added for a specific audience; other jokes may be avoided.  But actions and animations should be planned and performed in the same way.  Consider the following comment I received from a ventriloquist who was bidding on a figure with "crossing-eyes" feature: 

"I have one rather important concern about the ebay figure I'm considering.  If I'm successful in the bidding, I would want you to disable the "cross-eye" feature altogether.  It's a very sensitive thing, both in our church family, and  also with one of my sons, who, at age 48 has had five surgeries to straighten his "bad" eye. He can have nothing further done, and the "squint" as they call it is still there, though not as severe as it used to be.  Two children in our Sunday school also have this problem, and they too are very sensitive and self-conscious about it.  There is no way I could be seen using a dummy that would do this, even with a slip of my arthritic fingers." 
 As with things he has the figure say, so must the ventriloquist be ever mindful of how he acts - always keeping the audience foremost in mind.


  1. Anonymous1/22/2012

    I've always wondered why anyone bothered coming up with that feature. How many times do we humans cross our eyes? Not many, that's for sure. But the main use i've seen of it, is used just before a figure "passes out" & "falls" backwards or sideways. Jimmy Nelson's Humphrey Higsby had crossing eyes. If used in that context, i can see {no pun intended} it's validity in expressing "wooziness". But that's about the only time i can see using it. Not worth the extra expense, or the worry about malfunction in my mind. I don't know how that operates, but if it's by using a separate lever, that just makes the eyes cross, then the simplest way to disable it would be to just remove that lever or disconnect, at the lever, the string or rod that goes from the lever into the head. Other non realistic movements that come to mind, that some seem to need, are wiggling ears, noses that light up, hair that raises & lowers, & an upper lip that moves upward. Not a fan of lowering eyebrows movement either. Too many mechanisms to malfunction, & un-needed extra expense for the sake of movements that we as humans rarely, if ever, use ourselves. MY dream figure, would be a good looking one who's only movements are a turning head & moving mouth. Edgar Bergen, The Great Lester, & many others did just fine by sticking to the "k.i.s.s" ideaology. Just my 1 & 1/10ths cents. :) Bill Smith

  2. Anonymous1/22/2012

    Amen and Amen. How profound and very true!