Requiem for a Clown

A clown in greasepaint asks for a kiss and is rejected. Two weeks later Otto Griebling, one of the most famous circus clowns, is dead. An OpEd remembrance.


"I should have kissed him. I know that now. But he was after all only a clown, his face covered with grease paint and his clothes in tatters....He wooed other women that night. But, as horses and elephants followed the dogs into the rings, I saw no one kiss him. Less than a month later Otto Griebling, one of the most famous circus clowns, died....I wish I had kissed him."

The New York Times, May 20, 1972