The first time I heard “Lydia The Tattooed Lady” was on the Muppet Show. The second time was an episode of “Kids In The Hall” oddly enough. This video is from the 1939 movie “At The Circus.” I just watched the film for the first time this morning and it’s awesome! Not only is it filled with Marx Brothers’ trademark humor but it also has Harpo’s fantastic harp version of “Blue Moon,” another great jazz number called “Swingali,” and of course Groucho’s iconic number.
Even though I hadn’t watched many Marx Brothers films until recently, I was always a big Groucho fan. I watched “You Bet Your Life” reruns religiously when I was a kid. Imagine my delight when we moved to California and I learned that a friend of my mom’s new husband was Groucho’s housekeeper! She’d worked for him for years then she retired after his passing in 1977. Despite my frequent fangirl grillings though, she never would say much about him. All she’d ever say was “He was a good man and I was sad when he died.” I never really thought about it before but I bet if tabloids had been offering huge payments for “…Final Days” stories back then, she wouldn’t have taken the money. I think Groucho must have been a great man to inspire such loyalty in his employees. I’m glad to have known a woman with such integrity and respect for the privacy of her employer too. I must confess though, that I am a bit bummed that there’s really nothing more to this story. Now all I can do is apologize for making you all sit through what has to be the Worst. Anecdote. EVER! But hey, at least it has Groucho in it, right?