The Moron's Daily Briefing

Oct. 2 - Three of the past century's finest comedians were born on October 2: Groucho Marx (1890), Bud Abbot (1895), and Mahatma Gandhi (1869).

Groucho and Abbot were funny enough, but they pale beside the towering comic greatness of Gandhi. "Nonviolence is the greatest force at the disposal of mankind," he once quipped: "It is mightier than the mightiest weapon of destruction devised by the ingenuity of man."

That a humorist capable of such scathing sarcastic wit should have sullied himself with politics is regrettable, but not much worse than Jesus having gotten into religion.

It should also be remembered that for most of Gandhi's life the Indian subcontinent was occupied by the British, and that for the first few formative decades of his existence the British were ruled by a queen who was famously unamused. Gandhi went to extraordinary lengths to amuse Queen Victoria. It was only decades after her death that his genius came to full flower, however, and one can only hope she was amused posthumously.

(Eventually the British realized they didn't get Gandhi's jokes and withdrew from India to develop Monty Python.)

Today is Independence Day in Guinea. Gandhi's Birthday is a national holiday in India.

Less hilarious persons born on this date include Sting (1951), Donna Karan (1948), Don McLean (1945), Rex Reed (1938), and Graham Greene (1904).

2002, The Moron's Almanac™

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