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Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Memories.. like the corners of my mind.

Thursday, November 10, 200510:38:50 AM EST
Feeling Quiet

Yesterday when I wrote about Turhan Bey, it reminded me of another letter I had written that still means a lot to me.

It was sometime in the mid 80's when I watched an HBO special of Red Skelton. I had grown up watching Red Skelton on television. His T.V. show ran from 1951 - 1971. During all of those years no matter what, he made me laugh. He had many characters that he played such as Clem Kaddilhopper, Willie Lump Lump, Sheriff Dead-Eye, Freddie the Freeloader, and Junior-the mean widdle kid. Oh, and one of my favorites, the two pigeons Gertrude and Hecliff.

In all those years on television, (and including his HBO specials) Red Skelton never used a curse word... he made you laugh simply because he was "silly" and probably most of all, because he laughed at his own jokes! He had these priceless expressions that made you smile just to look at him.. from there on you could do nothing but laugh. Even thinking of him right now, he manages to put a smile on my face.

I had always wished I could see him in person, to see his show.. but that never happened for me. He was never close to where I lived and I never had the money to be able to afford to see him anyway. But, ohhh how I wanted to see him.

As I grew older I realized I would probably never get the chance to see Red Skelton so when the HBO special came on I was glued to the television. As if I was the child I was during his early years on television, this aging man simply took me away from anything going on in my life and put me in this really "good spot".. I laughed and even cried, he was just that good.

That night when I went to sleep I dreamed of Red Skelton. Now, this was not the norm for me. I don't dream often, remember very little when I do, and really didn't dream of others such as Red Skelton.

My dream was short. I was in a room with Mr. Skelton and maybe a dozen other people. We were all seated at desks, such as I had in high school. (seats with a small attached top of a desk) I didn't really hear what was going on but somehow I knew that all of these people were asking Mr. Skelton questions and writing down his answers. I, on the other hand, was recording the "session" and taking photos of Mr. Skelton, never saying a word to him. After some time Mr. Skelton looked directly at me and put out his hand towards me. "Don't you have a questions for me?" he asked.I got up from my seat and went to him, knelt on one knee (he was sitting) and put my hand on his and asked my question."I guess what I most want to know is... since you make so many people happy, what makes Red Skelton happy?"And before I heard his answer I woke up!

I mentioned this to someone the next day about how I had a dream and how I woke before the answer. They said to me,"You should write to him and tell him about your dream, I bet he would like that."Hmmmmmm.. not a bad idea.

I went home and wrote my letter. And if you read the story of Turhan Bey you can rightly imagine I did the same thing to Mr. Skelton.. I typed a Loooong letter telling him how much he meant to me and then I told him of my dream.

A few weeks later, one of those manilla envelopes arrived in my mail.. it was from Red Skelton. He had sent me an autographed picture and a typed letter (signed by him).. The letter was very unexpected.. it began like this:

"How strange the way things happen," he wrote, "I had a similar dream. Everyone was asking questions but this lady, a very beautiful young girl. Her gentleness and kindness made her the most beautiful girl in the room. Finally, I asked her why she doesn not ask any questions and just when she started to speak, I woke up. So you can see we are in the same boat."I broke down and cried right then and there. He had read my letter and was even being "funny" to me personally in his letter. His letter continued:"All jokes aside. What makes me happy is letters like yours and that the people I try to make happy don't always get a chance to tell me, so when they do it is most inspiring and I feel that I have done some good.Thank you dear Pat for your letter and as you know I was kidding about my dream but I thought it would make you smile."
I will always feel sad that I never had a chance to meet this very special man. There are other comedians I enjoy, but no one ever quite took me so far away from any problems I had or put me in a place where I felt nothing else mattered but watching this silly, silly man make me laugh.

Over the years, more and more, I reached out (by letters) to people who meant something to me. I didn't always get a response, but I was always glad that I had written the letter, that I had let them know how I felt.

Be it a letter to someone you admire for some reason, or simply "opening your mouth and saying how you feel" to someone, communication is an, oh so important gift given to us, that many people don't use often enough. Don't put it off.. don't "not" say it... you may not get another chance.

Red ended his show the same way over all the years he performed:
"If someday you're not feeling well, and you shouldremember some silly little thing I've said or done,and if it brings a smile to your face or a chuckleto your heart, then my purpose has been fulfilled."

My wild oats have turned into prunes and All Bran.


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