If a southern-sounding guy named Buford calls and asks for an oxygen tank for his pet hog, theres no need to reach for your English-Redneck dictionary its only Rickey Smiley, the character comic with a penchant for prank calls. Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, Smiley is proof that southern humor isnt limited to Jeff Foxworthys you know youre a redneck when style of comedy. More to the point, Smileys prank call Hog Needs Oxygen made to a medical supplies company -- captures red state intelligence in all its snaggle-toothed glory. "Pigs are people too," sayeth Buford. "You are what you eat, and I'm human, and pigs are human." Smileys goofs are plenty mischievous, but unlike the often crude humor of the Jerky Boys or Comedy Centrals Crank Yankers, Smileys jokes steer toward the cleaner side of things. His most notable characters include Ms. Bernice Jenkins, a 90-year-old church lady, and Coach McClainy, whos about as motivated as a sack of potatoes. Having grown up in Alabama, Smileys got the yokel shtick down pat. But that doesnt mean hell be sharing the stage with Larry the Cable Guy anytime soon. Smileys more likely to join the likes of D.L. Hughley and Bruce Bruce. In fact, he has done just that, having taken part in the Latham Entertainment Presents Tour. And while Smiley was most remembered as the host of BETs Comic View during its 2000 season, his role alongside Ice Cube in 2002s Friday After Next gave this popular southern comic plenty of urban cred to boot. Maybe thats why Smiley has a contingent of groupies who dont mind shilling out a good 20 bucks to join his online fan club (at RickeySmiley.com). We can only imagine the pranksters who frequent that chat room.
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