Remember those ‘bloopers’ records that were popular back in the 1950s? A guy named Kermit Schafer had a lot of success by compiling entire albums of bloopers — mostly from radio in the early days, but later from TV too. The slightly naughty nature of some of the excerpts probably helped make them more popular, but in any case Shafer made quite a career out of them. He is even given credit by some for inventing the word ‘blooper’ (or at least popularizing it). However, he did have his detractors — for one thing, it was said that he sometimes used actors to ‘recreate’ some of the bloopers.
Strangely enough, I still recall many of those bloopers, even after all these years. For example, if I’m watching a Western movie and the sheriff if forming a posse, I invariably remember the radio actor who shouted, ‘Look out, boys. It’s the sheriff and his possum!’
And the holiday season makes me think of the announcer who was promoting an upcoming Christmas show by stating, ‘Those ladies who attend will each receive a free goose.’ And then he thinks about it and makes it worse by adding, ‘. . . er, that is, all ladies will receive a goose. . . for free.’
And finally, I remember hearing what happened when famous plectrum banjoist Eddie Peabody was being introduced. Although his style of play might sound old-fashioned to fans of modern bluegrass-style banjo music, the guy known as the Banjo King was a huge star for decades — a Vaudeville headliner and a world-famous entertainer with countless command performances before kings, queens, and presidents. But at one particular appearance, the announcer proudly told the audience, ‘And now, ladies and gentlemen, Eddie Playbody will pee for you!’