I REMEMBER WHEN: Burns and Allen - Timeless, Clean Humor

Play the Theme from The Burns and Allen Show.

Gracie Allen died this date in 1964. This brought to mind the classic comediens and humor of my childhood. Red Skelton, Jackie Gleason, Burns and Allen. I remember when comedy was funny and clean, when it took real life and showed us how funny it could be without assaulting us with offensive language, sexual innuendo or references to violence and mayhem.

Burns and Allen was one of the favorites in our house. George Burns played the strait man to the slightly confused, ever funny Gracie Allen. Burns wrote the comedy, Allen delivered it with great timing, wit and a wholesome sense of fun. Gracie Allen was the inimitable "ditsy" blond. Her comments and thinking processes confounding George and bringing laughter to households across America in the 1950s.

Burns and Allen started in Vaudeville in the 1920s, then radio, movies and then to that new medium, television, with The Burns and Allen Show. The Burns and Allen Show ran for 291 episodes, from it's debut on October 12, 1950 to 1958. Many who have not seen the show have certainly heard their famous closing lines - George, "Say Goodnight, Gracie" to which Gracie always simply replied, "Goodnight" not, as legend has it, "Goodnight, Gracie".

Born in July in San Francisco somewhere between 1895 and 1906, Grace Allen performed with her sisters as Irish folk dancers known as The Four Colleens prior to meeting George Burns.

Though Gracie always claimed she was born in 1906. her crypt marker shows her birth as 1902 and a U.S. Census shows her birth as July 1895. Because of the great San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906 all city records were destroyed. Gracie would say she was born in 1906 but had no birth certificate to prove this because of the Great Earthquake. When it was pointed out that the earthquake was three months prior to her supposed birth date she would say "Well, it was an awfully big earthquake."

If you really want to see some totally clean, funny bits and enjoy some timeless humor watch the following YouTube clips. Now, Say Goodnight, Gracie!

Gracie Learns French:

George and Gracie:

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