5 Things about Mandela that Make World Smile on a Sad Day
As the world mourns the death of Nelson Mandela, former South African president and anti-apartheid leader, friends and journalists from around the world remember the great sense of humor he was known for
1. When Nelson Mandela met a married couple, he demanded to know from the lady, "When did you propose to your husband?"
2. Mandela loved to shower strangers with devastatingly flattering compliments. He often said to people, who led extremely ordinary life: "I am so honored to meet you."
3. At lecturers and meetings with white South African businessmen, he used to poke fun at himself, saying: “Thanks for everyone for coming to listen to such an old man" and "Nowadays, I am just a poor pensioner. I am jobless. Maybe you could hire me?"
4. One of Mandela's favorite anecdotes -- often told in public -- was of a conversation he had with a 4-year-old girl who asked him how old he was. Mandela replied, "I can't remember, but I was born long, long ago."
She then asked him why he went to jail. Mandela replied, "I didn't go there because I liked it. Some people sent me there." She asked how long he had been in jail. Mandela again replied, "I can't remember, but it was a long, long time." After a thoughtful pause the little girl said, "You are a stupid old man, aren't you?
5. He even amused the British royal family with his casual, overfamiliarity with the Queen, whom he called "Elizabeth" and not "Your Majesty. Once he complemented the monarch on her figure, saying “Why, Elizabeth, you've lost weight!"