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  Anne Sullivan Macy: Miracle Worker

Cartoon from the Minnesota Daily Star, March 29, 1922

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Trouble at Home and Abroad (1917-1930)
A Comic Duo

The vaudeville performances were in a question-and-answer format. Anne would read prepared questions and Helen would answer them. The questions ranged from current political topics to her personal likes and dislikes. Helen's answers were witty and funny and often took aim at politicians. Here are a few examples:

1. Question: Can you feel moonshine?

Answer: No, but I smell it.

2. Question: What do you like best about your teacher?

Answer: Her sense of humor! Her many-sided sympathy! Her passion for service.

3. Question: Can you tell us who was the first profiteer?

Answer: (A) Pharaoh's daughter because she drew a little prophet from the rushes on the bank.

Answer: (B) The whale because he swallowed all the profit in sight.

4. Question: What is your definition of politics?

Answer: (A) The art of promising one thing and doing another.

Answer: (B) The art of finding and holding on to profitable jobs.

5. Question: Do you close your eyes when you sleep?

Answer: I guess I do, but I never stayed awake to see.

6. Question: What do you think is the most important question before the country today?

Answer: How to get a drink.

7. Question: Can you suggest any tax that people would pay willingly?

Answer: Yes! A tax on millionaires.

8. Question: Do you think America has been true to her ideals?

Answer: I'm afraid to answer that, the Ku Klux Klan might give me a ducking.

9. Question: Who is your favorite hero in real life?

Answer: Eugene V. Debs. He dared to do what other men were afraid to do.

10. Question: Do you believe a woman can keep a secret?

Answer: Of course we can. It's the person we tell it to who can't.

11. Question: What can a person do when his constitution is gone?

Answer: Do as the United States does! Live on the amendments.

The shows were a success and Helen thoroughly enjoyed the excitement of it all, but Anne did not. By 1922 her eyes were again failing, her overall health was poor, and she and Helen stopped performing.


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