Friday, June 26, 2009

It comes in threes

This week I was sadden to hear of the passing of Ed McMahon, Johnny Carson’s longtime sidekick. I grew up watching Johnny and Ed on the Tonight Show – at least when I could coerce my parents into letting me stay up that late. Or sneak into the living room undetected to watch. As a kid I always wondered why Mr. McMahon didn’t get to have a show of his own. All he got to go was sit there and provide chuckles whenever Johnny said something funny. But, as I got older, I began to appreciate how important his role in the show was. He was a wonderful example of how you don’t always have to be the star to be a great entertainer. I love this quote from him: “It’s like a pitcher who has a favorite catcher,’’ he said. “The pitcher gets a little help from the catcher, but the pitcher’s got to throw the ball. Well, Johnny Carson had to throw the ball, but I could give him a little help.’’

While Ed McMahon’s passing was undoubtedly sad, as one reporter put it, “He’s by Johnny’s side again.” A bittersweet, yet comforting thought.

However, when I opened Yahoo! Thursday morning, another celebrity death hit me even harder. Farrah Fawcett. I knew she’d been sick for some time, but something about someone so young and still so vibrantly beautiful passing away struck me.

The fabulous-haired former Charlie’s Angel was diagnosed with cancer three years ago, and her documentary, “Farrah’s Story”, which recently aired gave a very real look into her struggles. I watched and felt tremendously for both her and her family. The only bright spot being that the disease had brought her and Ryan O’Neil back together again, even prompting him to propose marriage. A very sweet thought that he was with her in the end.

And then… a few hours later, the yahoo! headlines (you see where I get all my news now, right?) changed unexpectedly from tributes to Farrah to the shocking news that Michael Jackson had just died.


Considering the turbulent life he’s lead lately, that was the last thing I expected to read about him in the headlines. No matter what your opinion of him was (and mine’s certainly been mixed at times), that was stop-what-you’re-doing shocking. All I can say is that my heart goes out to his three children. And, yes, I’m glued to yahoo! now waiting for the latest reports on just what happened.

So, I’m hoping that’s the three. Because being the hormonal mess that I am, I’m asking everyone – celebrities and non alike – to please just stay put for awhile. ‘K?

~Trigger Happy Halliday


Suzan Harden said...

Thirty-two years ago, I didn't understand why my mom and her friends were so upset when the news was blasted Elvis Presley had died. Now I do.

Regardless of what I personally think of Michael Jackson, his music and style defined pop culture in the '80's. A era has died, and that's what I mourn most.

Gemma Halliday said...

They did a MJ hour on the radio here today and I found myself singing along to every song. :) Especially his early ones. He had the voice of an angel as a kid, didn't he?

Jenyfer Matthews said...

I'm not much of a celebrity watcher, but seeing these three pass so close together really did affect me. They were so much a part of pop culture of my childhood and adolescence. An era really has died.