Copyright 2005 Ben S. Pollock
Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2005. It seems fruitless and self-serving to merely write stuff that’s a reaction to stuff. Stuff. Stuff. Stuff.
Last month, I threw a Brick that Johnny Carson in death deserves all the credit for talent, longevity and knowing when to leave the stage that he is getting in eulogies, yet it shouldn’t be forgotten both that his show was leeringly sexist as well as numbingly repetitive.
I have one more point: The talk shows in those days did do one thing right: Its guests were not always, always, promoting or hawking movies or books or TV shows. Some were on because they were interesting, fun or off-beat. Comics — the biggest eulogizers in recent weeks — back then rarely were introduced as having just begun the second season of their sitcoms but that they were playing a week at the Improv or some Vegas showroom. Tens of millions of “Tonight Show” viewers being sold to fly out to grab one of a few dozen seats, on a two-drink minimum? No, the comics were on to entertain TV viewers.
That was nice.
It seems that 9/11 changed the guest list, fortunately. Now, the main network shows also have thinkers and public servants, even journalists without books to hawk, on occasion.
But count on Johnny to have invited Tiny Tim and Calvin Trillin numerous times, no matter their box office appeal.
I’m still merely reacting. Maybe it’s OK. The sun came out this morning, and I reacted by getting out of bed and writing this. Original? Yes, despite almost everything. — 30–