The Manbottle Library
The Manbottle Library  :  Humor  :  Steve Allen

Steve Allen

Steve Allen, Renaissance Man:

...describing Allen as a comedian is like describing Leonardo da Vinci as a "painter." Like Leonardo, Alien is a Renaissance man. Besides being a comedian, he is an author, actor, playwright, composer (some 6,000 songs), singer, pianist, ... not to mention social critic, aforementioned pro-science spokesman, and, for all I know, part-time body-and-fender man.

-- Mark Wheeler, "Allen Encounters", Discover magazine (note - more recent sources put the number of songs closer to 8,000)

His whopping 48 books cover the kinds of topics you'd expect from an entertainer but also include such varied subjects as cults, corruption in America, an "explanation" of China, smokers' rights, and the Bible and religion. In addition, he's written a number of mystery novels, among them The Talk Show Murders.

-- Mark Wheeler, "Allen Encounters", Discover magazine

On the day of his death, Mr. Allen was working on the promotional plans for the December release of his 53rd book Steve Allen's Private Joke File, and adding the final touches to his manuscript for his 54th book, Vulgarians at the Gate concerning the rising tide of violence and vulgarity in the popular media.

-- Steve Allen, life and death, ( )

in one recent instance, in the sight of over 200 witnesses in the lobby of a Kalamazoo, Michigan, hotel, [he] wrote a total of 400 songs in one day.

-- Steve Allen Online ( )

Steve Allen is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most prolific composer of modern times.

-- Internet Movie Database ( )

Steve Allen, quotes:

Once Allen, dressed as a policeman, raced out of the studio with a large salami, tossed it into the backseat of a taxi, and shouted to the driver, "Get this to Grand Central Station as quick as you can!" The driver sped off without a word.

Announcing the final score of a big game between Harvard and William and Mary, it came out: "Harvard 14, William 12, Mary 6."

When someone in the studio audience once asked him, "Do they get your program in Boston?", he quipped, "They see it, but they don't get it!"

"I used to be a heavy gambler. But now I just make mental bets. That's how I lost my mind."

"Men will take almost any kind of criticism except the observation that they have no sense of humor."

"The hair is real; it's the head that's fake."

"Do not allow children to mix drinks. It is unseemly and they use too much vermouth."

"Nothing is better than the unintended humor of reality."

"One of the nice things about problems is that a good many of them do not exist except in our imagination."

Steve Allen on religion:

...and no philosophy, sadly, has all the answers. No matter how assured we may be about certain aspects of our belief, there are always painful inconsistencies, exceptions, and contradictions. This is true in religion as it is in politics, and is self-evident to all except fanatics and the naive. As for the fanatics, whose number is legion in our own time, we might be advised to leave them to heaven. They will not, unfortunately, do us the same courtesy. They attack us and each other, and whatever their protestations to peaceful intent, the bloody record of history makes clear that they are easily disposed to resort to the sword. My own belief in God, then, is just that -- a matter of belief, not knowledge. My respect for Jesus Christ arises from the fact that He seems to have been the most virtuous inhabitant of Planet Earth. But even well-educated Christians are frustrated in their thirst for certainty about the beloved figure of Jesus because of the undeniable ambiguity of the scriptural record. Such ambiguity is not apparent to children or fanatics, but every recognized Bible scholar is perfectly aware of it. Some Christians, alas, resort to formal lying to obscure such reality.

-- Steve Allen

Steve Allen

1921 - 2000

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