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ktinkel
09-20-2005, 07:24 AM
Honey Bruce Friedman, 78, died Sept. 12, 2005 in Honolulu. She had a checkered past and a bit of a film career, appearing in a couple of movies in the 1950s. She married Lenny Bruce in 1951. They were divorced in 1957, and Bruce died in 1966.

Despite their short time together, Honey was a strong figure in Bruce’s life (today I suppose we would call her an enabler or a co-addict). She was played by Valerie Perrine in Lenny (1974, produced by Bob Fosse) and was featured in the documentary on Bruce’s life, Lenny Bruce: Swear to Tell the Truth (1998). She also wrote a memoir, Honey: The Life and Loves of Lenny’s Shady Lady.

I was a Lenny Bruce fan. Jack and I saw his act at the Condor in San Francisco in 1963, and perhaps on one earlier occasion. In 1964 he was convicted on obscenity charges (for which Honey and others won a posthumous pardon in 2003). He was a brilliant if bitter (and, yes, foul-mouthed) comedian and social critic. (Today it seems we hear language nearly as raunchy on many a TV show; in any event, speech should not be a crime.)

If you don’t know who Lenny Bruce is (was), never mind. Pity, though.

Norman Hathaway
10-07-2005, 06:09 PM
i'm SO jealous of you KT.
Thanks for posting that.

ktinkel
10-07-2005, 06:30 PM
i'm SO jealous of you KT.
Thanks for posting that.You are welcome!

marlene
10-07-2005, 08:23 PM
I'm jealous, too.

I read the obit in the Washington Post, which included a photo of Lenny, Honey, and their daughter. I didn't remember they had a kid -- wonder what sort of interesting life she leads?

mxh

ktinkel
10-08-2005, 07:29 AM
I read the obit in the Washington Post, which included a photo of Lenny, Honey, and their daughter. I didn't remember they had a kid -- wonder what sort of interesting life she leads?Kitty Bruce seems to lead a fairly interesting life (though I have never seen much about her private life).

She has done some acting (she played Donut in The Switchblade Sisters (http://www.biblio.com/details.php?dcx=8084589&src=frg) and was in perhaps one other movie).

She also was among those who (along with her mother, and the Smothers Brothers, Robin Williams, Penn & Teller, and others who credit Lenny Bruce as the godfather of modern standup comics) petitioned NYS governor George Pataki (http://www.law.seattleu.edu/fachome/skover/trialsoflennybruce/kitty.htm) to pardon her father posthumously. He surprised everyone by actually doing it in 2003.

She also wrote/compiled The (Almost) Unpublished Lenny Bruce (http://www.biblio.com/details.php?dcx=8084589&src=frg), published by Running Press in 1984.

Last year she co-produced a 6-CD set entitled Lenny Bruce: Let the Buyer Beware (http://www.barnstablepatriot.com/lenny_bruce_arts_69_6040.html) — with recordings of her father over the years, including his debut on the Arthur Godfrey show, real personal phone calls, rehearsals of his standup routines, and miscellaneous commentaries.

A comment about Lenny Bruce and his work from a review of Let the Buyer Beware by Alan Petrucelli in the Barnstable Patriot:Like a witty Thomas Paine, Bruce was a true patriot when it came to freedom of expression. Without Bruce there would be no Bill Maher, no South Park, no Jon Stewart, and considerably fewer freedoms in general — not only in speech, but also in equality between races and genders. …

sfsfendless
01-16-2006, 02:04 PM
The genius of Lenny Bruce's comedy is hard to parse in contemporary terms. It's akin to a dead language. But if you can ressurrect that language -- interpret the dizzying ad-libbed connections, understand the social climate of the day and have a knowledge of the cultural references of his times -- the recorded fragments of his humor that he left behind are as pointed and hilarious as any satire/humor there ever was.

Honey Bruce's book is a bit of a period (70s) piece, but a very entertaining one. It makes an essential companion to the Lenny Bruce autobio "How to Talk Dirty And Influence People".

RE: movies... Kitty Bruce can be seen in a small bit part in Bad (a.k.a. Andy Warhol's BAD). Also, sometime in the mid-50s Lenny and Honey Bruce made a sub-B movie called Dance Hall Racket, which can be found on VHS if you search high and low.

ktinkel
01-16-2006, 02:13 PM
Kitty Bruce can be seen in a small bit part in Bad (a.k.a. Andy Warhol's BAD). Also, sometime in the mid-50s Lenny and Honey Bruce made a sub-B movie called Dance Hall Racket, which can be found on VHS if you search high and low.Thanks for the additional information.

And welcome to the forum.