When I was very small my dad held one hand out like a barrier. Then he snapped the fingers of his other hand on alternate sides of this barrier. ‘What’s this?’ he asked? His answer was ‘Mr. and Mrs. Yehudi playing tennis.’

Apparently Yehudi was an invisible man, and so was his wife. What is the origin of the invisible Mr. Yehudi? Why was he invisible? Because it’s easy to blame mishaps on an invisible man? Or because he’s never there when there’s a task to be done? Any connection to Yehudi Menuhin?

Interesting question, since my dad, who grew up in the 1930s, also used to refer to “'Yehudi” as a kind of invisible man.

According to this link it was a running gag by Jerry Colonna on the Bob Hope radio show, originating in a guest appearance by Yehudi Menuhin when Colonna was trying to figure out who “Yehudi” was.

Perhaps **samclem ** will be able to provide more information.

Yehudi and the Blowfish were a popular band of the 1990s.

Never saw them in concert, now that I think about it …

Hey, Yehudi, don’t make it bad…

-The Yehudi Principle by Fredric Brown (1944).

And here I thought this would be another Jewish-themed thread. We’ve had a spate of them lately…

Shoot yourself. :stuck_out_tongue:

The other day, upon the stair
I saw a man who wasn’t there.
He wasn’t there again today.
Oh how I wish he’d go away.

  • Ogden Nash

When I was a kid growing up in the Midwest, my dad and grandpa used to tell me that Yehudi was responsible for turning the light on when the refrigerator door was opened. Of course, I’d never seen it written, so I always thought it was spelled “Yahootie.”

Well, it’s not too late to make it a Jewish-themed thread. Once, when I was a student of Arabic at The Defense Language Institute in Monterey, one of the native speaker instructors (Lebanese) walked into the classroom during the ribaldry following a particularly humorous joke. When the laughter had subsided, he got a big grin on his face and asked the class, “Maatet Yehudi?” (“Did a Jew just die?”). The demeanor of the classroom changed rapidly as it dawned on us that there is not a small population that considers the only good Jew to be a dead one. He appologized for the crass joke, and went into a discussion of ongoing cultural struggles between Jews and Arabs.

Oh…a possible answer to the OP which has already been pointed out.

Hughes Mearns, actually.

It became a song recorded by Glenn Miller, among others, in 1939. As mentioned in the link I posted, this probably contributed to the Yehudi/invisible man link.

Besides talking about Yehudi, my father used to recite the poem, but I’m sure it was from the song lyrics rather than Mearns

Thanks! I did not know that.