Potato salad

By the Ross Sisters. Straight out of 1944. Shit gets real about a minute in, and it keeps getting real-er, so stay with it. Jonas Brothers, you better step it up. YouTube Video (thanks, Antinous)


    1. oh if only they had “demonic possession” movies in the 50s, they would have made terrifying demon hosts… that hand walk with the ass on the head and the feet dangling is one makeup artist short of making me piss my pants.

  1. That’s either faked or we were invaded by hand walking fembots from outer space somewhere in the mid-twentieth century.

    1. I think you are right, it must be faked… there is no way a ghost really closed the door at the end.

    2. Obviously you’re too young to know about vaudeville which this was the norm for entertainment. These women were double-jointed. No tricks. You’re used to computer graphics and Janet Jackson showing her boob. Youth it wasted on the Young.

    1. You’re right, because clearly these talents are only good for pleasing men. Why would a talented woman ever have any other goal?

  2. Wow, I was wondering why they were packing thinly-veiled, I-hate-life grimaces while they were singing. It’s because they were worried about the death defying stunts!

    The whole thing is just amazing, and here I have trouble just crawling under my desk when I drop my bag of Cheetos.

  3. * Proof that once upon a time, we didn’t need a Quebecois circus troupe (Cirque du Soleil) importing ex-Soviet Bloc performers to do similar things. No, we produced them on our own.

    * Man… I can just picture the James Ellroy “live sex acts” write-up of this in some neo-noir novel.

  4. Ya know, that’s the problem with music today. No one sings about Potato Salad. You can keep your Umbrella-ellas and your lady lumps and your boxes with dicks in them! I want songs about potato salad! Now 23 skidoo!

  5. Is it weird that all I could think about was the scene from _The Road_ where father and son discover the human chattel dungeon? I was eating a suddenly not-so-yummy slice of pizza while watching the clip.

    But wow them sisters! I can’t even touch my toes!

  6. I figured it was going to be a song with a flirty subtext or something. Instead, it was a terrible song with an AWESOME video. (Sort of the opposite of the Pixies’ “Velouria” in that regard.)

  7. While I appreciate their remarkable strength and flexibility, contortionism just makes me a little queasy.

  8. Fantastic film, but it was a struggle to get through the first 45 seconds or so. Then I realized they hadn’t been exactly hired for their singing voices.

    Seriously though, if that was the kind of song I had to hear frequently in 1944, I probably would have volunteered to go on patrol in the Ardennes or something.

  9. wow. if you didn’t tell me to fast-forward i wouldn’t have watched it. that’s insane! and creepy. cool video though!

  10. I love potato salad. Delicious, filling, and dreamy! Thanks for putting a smile on my face today!

  11. 1st saw this about a year ago & flipped my lid! ive always loved that 40’s style tight harmony & hepcat jive talk, as well as flexi-girls & potato salad…this vid has EVERYTHING!! & the daisy chain at the end takes the cake! a real gone solid sender jack!

  12. One of those squirrels carrying the hollow coconuts from the guys over at the large hadron has a message that says watching this video too much will create a bizarre fold in the fabric of space time.
    lol, potatoes
    does anyone else have the urge to watch South Pacific at this moment?

  13. No matter in what context I think about that video, it’s impressive. That, in and of itself, is also impressive. Those sisters are very, very good.

  14. Through the 1940s such performers were known as contortionists and could be seen in any variety show. By the 1960s the name “acrobatic dancer” was used. I don’t know what they call themselves now.

  15. The ‘grabbing the apple’ trick looks like it was shown backwards, the apple kind of jumps up into her mouth. Not that that makes the contortion any less amazing. I have to say that was a real jaw-dropper once the action started until they tumbled out of there!

    1. Actually, it looks as though the apple has a stem and she grabs that with her teeth. The apple then pops forward a bit. watch closely.

  16. The apple trick doesn’t look backward to me. You’ll notice that at 2:54, a piece of hay falls in just the right direction. Also, when her hands brush the hay, they move after contact and not before. There may be some other trick to explain why the apple hops into her mouth, or it could be that the image quality is not sufficient to properly make out what’s happening. Their obvious talents and confidence being what they are, I doubt they’d have any reason to fake this routine. That’d be like Elvis using auto-tune or Buster Keaton using a stunt-double, don’t you think? What’d be the point?

  17. i especially like their singing. and very, very much so. would be more than enough for me.

    but they… well forget it, i am speechless.


    p.s.: recaptcha is asking me to write “harmony leaders”. something is very wrong and very right here.

  18. It seems very titillating for the era. And I couldn’t help but find it sexy- like they tried to pretend it was musical, then an innocent circus show and yet the moves kept getting dirtier and more suggestive. True art!

  19. I don’t think it’s “Solid Potato Salad” but “Salad, Potato Salad”. Makes more sense that way.

    I find it interesting that the women are obviously just as strong as any Cirque du Soleil performer, yet they don’t appear sinewy and super-low-body-fat – a testament to being healthy, athletic performers? Must be all that potato salad keeping them robust. Mind-bendingly enjoyable video!

    1. Not according to the wikipedia link at the top of the page..


      Some people like their taters Lyonnaise, some prefer French fries.
      I prefer mine with mayonnaise, cole slaw on the side.
      Solid potato salad, that’s solid salad, Jack,
      Solid potato salad, boy, take a plate, fill it up, bring it right back.
      Solid potato salad, and let’s have no Yak Yak
      Solid potato salad, boy, take a plate, fill it up, bring it right back.
      The farmer said to the spud, your skin looks slightly pallid,
      So I’ll dig you later bud, with some solid …potato salad.
      Solid potato salad, that’s solid salad, Jack,
      Solid potato salad, boy, take a plate, fill it up, bring it right back.
      Take a plate, fill it up, bring it right back.
      Take a plate, fill it up, bring it right back.
      Take a plate, fill it up, bring it right back.
      Solid potato ….salad, it’ll be so fine that you better latch on,
      Solid potato ….salad, whatever it takes get a plate before it’s all gone.
      The farmer said to the spud, your skin looks slightly pallid,
      So I’ll dig you later bud, with some solid …potato salad.
      Solid potato salad, that’s solid salad, Jack,
      Solid potato salad, boy, take a plate… fill it up…
      Take a plate, fill it up, and bring it right back.

  20. I’m sure glad you informed us when shit started getting real. The voices, the slightly out of sync dance moves. These things did not bode well in the first 58 seconds or so.

    Everything after that. Well. Just. Wow.

  21. Proves my theory, “Just because you don’t eat potato salad doesn’t mean you can’t masturbate to it.”

  22. Anyone who thinks pornography wasn’t as suggestive in the early 20th century is just plain wrong. There was NO reason other than for the explicit fancy of imagination for that girl on the wheely-barrow to prove she can stand on her head with her feet still on the floor.

  23. For anyone finding this clip especially sexy:

    ggaylmer (1 month ago)
    Careful!…the youngest was only 15 at most in 1944 (Dixie, born 1929, married Dickie Henderson 1948, died 1963)

    1. I don’t advocate fraternizing with minors, but are you saying we shouldn’t be aroused? Whatever their ages, it was for me not so much a circus performance as a cleverly lewd awesomeness dance. But oh my, were they forced to wear that stuff?

  24. I didn’t want to go here but to quote Fanny Pack “is your crotch hungry girl, cause it’s eating your pants”.

  25. After 2 minutes I just stared yelling “WHAT?!” at my monitor. Now I’m just in shock and reposting the hell out of this video.

  26. some primo (Barratt and Fielding) Boosh-esque ~crimp~ inspiration thar… with bonus twirling to boot!… I’ll never not-finish my paper-plated potato salad again…

  27. Awesome. I imagine they were followed by a sketch featuring an Irish cop, a bum, and a bottle of seltzer.

    But I was deathly afraid of seeing ‘3 girls, 1 plate.’

    Excuse me, phone.

    That was 2006, calling for its meme back.

  28. The weird thing is I remember seeing this video a year or few again – and I’m pretty sure I saw it here. Can’t find anything in the archives but damnit…

  29. While those are all things young girls can be trained to do, it’s still totally F-ed.

    I got nothin.

  30. Er… what’s the connection between these acrobatics and potato salad? I’m guessing that potato salad is what you’re joints turn into after a life spent doing this stuff… ;-)

  31. I dunno what “potato salad” is, but I want some! I hope potato salad does not give them gas!

  32. potato salad? i was thinking more like pasta salad until the end when it became clear the obvious name should have been tossing salad

  33. She’s 15? Then wouldn’t all those spread-eagled shots of the underaged girl, though clothed, make this clip illegal in the US(or for a US citizen to posses outside the US?)

    After all, the courts decided that clothed underaged girls in explicit positions are as illegal as the nekkid ones.

    Just wonderin.

  34. In 1944, there were still states in the Union that would allow marriage to a 15 year old.

    Besides, it can’t be lewd because their bellybuttons are covered.

  35. BTW, while I hope Jackhammer Jill always remains the masthead mascot for BoingBoing…

    if Happy Mutants LLC ever needs a logo/mascot, you could take inspiration from the shot of the Ross Sister at 2:35…..

  36. What the hell did I just watch. All I remember is some singing about potato salad and some creepy Exorcist-like contortions and shit.

  37. I just wonder why the singing at all? I mean if she had eaten a whole plate of tater salad instead of grabbing the apple with her teeth. Still, pretty hot in my book.

  38. Vaudeville was a tough gig.

    “Contortionists? Dime a dozen. Don’t call us; we’ll call you. Oh, you also sing close harmony? Well, you can work off-nights for a week and we’ll see.”

  39. She has a magnet in her mouth and it’s a paper apple with a small metal plate on part of the surface.

  40. This video made me scream and look away. thankfully, when I looked back, nobody was dismembered!

  41. Saw this movie on TCM this afternoon – well, part of it. Caught it from just before the Ross Sister’s big exit. What a hallucination-fest! Esp Dean Murphy’s (I think – not enough info in the credits) serenade of Trixie (Nancy Walker (Ida Morgenstern)). He’s an early Jim Carrey!

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