The Aristocrats No More

This link about Bob Saget reminds me of the greatest joke ever told:

One day a little boy accompanies his mother to the circus. This was a special occasion in the little boy’s life as his mother, a hard-working single woman, was poor and could ill afford many luxuries for them. The boy and his mother watched as acrobats performed on trapezes high above the crowd, elephants stood on their back legs, a lion tamer stuck his head into the open mouth of a tiger and numerous men were fired out of cannons. As the circus drew to a close, a clown approached the center ring and the lights dimmed.

“Now is the time during our show when we bring a lucky person up here to drive the clown car,” says the clown.

The spotlights start spinning wildly around the tent.

“Who will it be? Who will be the lucky person?” the clown boomed into the microphone.

A frenzy of screams and mayhem erupt from the audience. The lights whiz, spinning faster and faster until they suddenly stop, right on the little boy. The clown calls for the little boy to come to the center ring and immediately the little boy leaps from his seat and tears down the aisle, hurdling the metal barricade and jumping into the waiting arms of the clown. The clown, grin stretched across his made-up face, squats down and one knee and says to the little boy, “Now, before you can drive the clown car you must answer me one question.”

“Okay,” replies the little boy, bursting in anticipation.

“The question is this: Are you a horse’s head?”

Confused the little boy looks up at the clown. He does not know how to respond. He looks to his mother in grandstands for guidance. She nods her head, encouraging the little boy to speak. Finally, the little boy mutters, “Well, no. I am not a horse’s head.”

“Then you must be a horse’s ass!” says the clown.

The circus tent erupts in laughter. Parents and children point at the little boy and mock him for being so stupid. Embarrassed beyond belief, the little boy runs out of the tent and into the night. His mother eventually finds him behind the funnel cake stand, his eyes swollen with tears and his tender heart broken by the clown’s cruel joke.

Years pass and the little boy grows into a man. The clown’s joke affecting him deeply, the man turns to drugs, therapists and prostitutes to fill the great empty void the clown left in his life. All he wanted was to drive the clown car and be a happy little boy. He vowed to find the clown and teach him a lesson.

He calls various circuses and asks them if they have a clown who does jokes about horse’s asses. After numerous unsuccessful attempts, the man finally finds the circus and the clown, which are touring on the other side of the country. He immediately books a plane ticket buys entry into the circus.

During the long flight the man grows more and more excited at the prospect of confronting the mean clown. He arrives at the circus and takes his seat close to the center ring. The circus seems to move in slow motion as the man sits transfixed in the crowd, waiting for his moment of vindication. Finally, his moment arrives. Like so many years before, the clown walks to the center ring and makes his announcement. The spotlights begin spinning wildly around the tent and the suddenly stop on the man. The clown calls for him to come down to the center ring and he complies, coolly walking down the aisle. He approaches the center ring and shakes the clown’s hand.

“Before you drive the clown car, you must answer me one question,” says the clown.

“Certainly,” says the man, excited, for his moment of reckoning.

“Are you a horse’s head?”


“Than you must be a horse’s ass!” yells the clown.

The circus erupts in laughter as it did when the man was a little boy. The man rips the microphone out of the clown’s hand and motions for silence from the crowd. Awestruck, the audience grows quiet. The man’s moment has arrived. He brings the microphone to his mouth, ready to unleash the years of pain he suffered caused by the clown’s cruel joke. He looks at the clown, points his finger and screams, “Hey! Fuck you, clown!”

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