I'll bet you do not feel neutral about clowns. People seem to have either a a total love or extreme dislike for them. I am firmly and permanently in the latter group.

I DON'T LIKE CLOWNS. I REALLY REALLY REALLY DON'T. And I am here tonight to tell you why, in a few hundred words. I don't think I will get to a thousand because I haven't had much coffee today.

Clowns are creepy. There is something very odd and disturbing about a grown person trying to be amusing by obscuring their features with bizarre heavy makeup and putting on overly-large colorful garments, such as oversized shoes and baggy polka-dotted pants. Why is that funny? Even children know it's not funny! Children also are wise about shopping mall Santas, that's why they cry so much when they are forced to sit on them. They have an unerring sense of the wrong. Clowns are wrong.

I try to get inside the mind of a clown. What on earth in this world makes someone want to do this? Think. Of all the things, careers, hobbies to choose, this. The hope that someone not totally skeeved out by your appearance and lame physical comedy might throw a mercy smirk your way? What IS IT you WANT from people, Clown? You cannot possibly believe you are an entertainer, can you? Maybe clowns were hot comedy back in the days of potato-picking serfs, who would laugh at anything to take their minds off their back-breaking labor, the Plague, and that their legs just turned black and fell off. Honestly, I think even back then you would've been smote or hung or at least shunned and banished. Not funny is a universal and timeless wrong.

There is something desperate about a clown, a neediness that is repulsive. I get the feeling clowns are hiding something sinister. I am not alone in this. There are many websites devoted to the loathing of clowns, such as People get fired up about this, and for good reason I think. There is another subsection of people who actually fear clowns. I do not fear them; I would like to see them all relegated to some shitty, hurricane-and-violence-prone island, or at least contained to somewhere I will never go, like Louisiana.

The only thing creepier than clowns are the people who love clowns. Oh, man. I mean, I could bring up John Wayne Gacy, but that's too easy. People who fill their homes with clown paintings, little clown figurines, clown lamps, clown sculptures, mugs that have a sad-faced clown saying, "Be Nice To Me, I've Had A Hard Day," well all I can say about that is JESUS CHRIST. I think there is something in those people that relates to the idea of clowns as the broken-heart-of-gold semi-saint that goes out there to make balloon animals despite their crippling emotional pain. I believe these same people often own tiny miserable dogs that they dress in little outfits, and think mimes are great artists. Mimes are clowns, but even more lame and creepy. Anyone who tries to "walk against the wind" should be shot immediately with 100 paintball guns.

Now THAT would be funny.