RIP, Meshach Taylor

Posted by The G on June 29, 2014 under Celebrities | Be the First to Comment

Photo and autograph courtesy of the G Archives.

Meshach Taylor

Meshach Taylor

Sad news out of Hollywood.  Actor Meshach Taylor has died from cancer.  I met Meshach several times during the height of his run as Anthony on “Designing Women,” and he was always extremely nice towards his fans.  As you can see above, he had a beautiful autograph too.  Rest easy Meshach!  Thanks for all the laughs you’ve given us!

RIP Tony Gwynn, Casey Kasem

Posted by The G on June 16, 2014 under Celebrities | Read the First Comment

Photos and autographs courtesy of my obtained in person autograph collection.

Tony Gwynn

Tony Gwynn

I’m very sad to say that two legends from totally different walks of life have passed away. Hall of Fame baseball player Tony Gwynn and announcer Casey Kasem have been very influential in my life. Tony Gwynn was one of the best players around during my baseball fandom and the awesome thing is, for every time I ever saw him – which was a lot, he was ALWAYS a nice guy.  He always took the time to sign autographs for fans and as you can see above, he had a really cool signature.  I always had a huge respect for someone so popular to remain so nice, year after year, even after his career had skyrocketed.

Casey Kasem

Casey Kasem

Radio personality (and the voice of Shaggy on Scooby Doo), Casey Kasem has also died.  My brother and I listened to his top 40 countdown all the time and because of it, I discovered a lot of music that has completely and utterly rocked my world.  I used to go to a Super Bowl party every year that had a lot of famous people at it and I saw Casey and his wife often at that party.  They were always extremely nice.  He was as uplifting and inspirational in person as he was on the radio.

Both Casey Kasem and Tony Gwynn had been ill for a long time, so I am glad they are free from suffering and I will always think of you both fondly and I hope your messages of love will be learned and understood by the next generation.

Rest in peace and happy trails, gentlemen!  Thanks for always being nice to me!

My Two Cents on Philip Seymour Hoffman

Posted by The G on February 3, 2014 under Celebrities, The G Spot | Be the First to Comment

Photo and autograph courtesy of the G Archives.

Philip Seymour Hoffman

Philip Seymour Hoffman

Unless you are one of the fortunate souls on this planet that turns off the news and doesn’t look at the internet, you know by now that actor Philip Seymour Hoffman died on February 2, 2014 of an alleged heroin overdose.

Everybody loves a good tragedy (whether or not they admit it) and the internet has been on fire with remembrances of PSH’s performances and speculations about his drug addiction.  People are also taking to the net with self-righteous proclamations and judgments about his choices and decisions.  People have turned this unfortunate incident as a public “but enough about you, let’s talk about me” session.  At the end of the day, it’s none of our fucking business!

I can tell you this much about my experiences with PSH.  He was nice enough to sign an autograph for me “back in the day” before I carried a camera around (see above) and in my more recent encounters with him, the situation was not appropriate to ask for a photo (yes, believe it or not, even I have limits!) so I didn’t push it.  The word on the street from a lot of my friends that enjoy collecting autographs and photos with celebrities is that PSH was hit and miss.  He could be quite nice or a prick, depending on his mood.  Maybe not what the average person wants to hear, but I am speaking without prejudice from my experiences.  I will go on record that I was a fan of his movies and I dislike seeing people burn out before they ‘should,’ but I am a realist as well and I realize that we all gotta go sometime and PSH’s time was up on February 2, 2014.

It’s undeniable that he was a tremendous actor and he could likely have sustained an acting career for as long as he was interested in pursing the craft.  I think people have lost sight of the fact that he was only an actor.  Though great at what he did, he did not cure cancer or rescue people from burning buildings.  Apparently the type of heroin he had been taking has made the New York Police Department go on a manhunt for the drug dealers who supplied PSH with the lethal dose that killed him.  This is New York.  People die from heroin addiction all the time.  How come there is such an interested in catching “the bad guys” all of a sudden?  Because PSH was a famous junkie instead of that junkie in dark alleys looking for their fix?

I also find it foul and disgusting that once word broke about his death, news crews camped out for hours trying to get a photo of them carting the body out of his apartment.  So morbid!   If that was someone I knew personally, I would be furious that nobody has done anything to stop the media circus.  If only it hadn’t been 30 degrees warmer on his death day, maybe crews would have given up and gone away because it’s been frigid here for weeks on end except that day! Worst of all, the guy had 3 kids and if it’s not enough that they lost their father, do you think they really want the world having footage of what will probably be the most horrific day of their lives?  Worse yet, “last photos” are starting to circulate that people have taken on cell phones because thanks to camera phones, everyone thinks they are a member of the paparazzi.

What came next were the inevitable “RIP PSH” tweets and Facebook posts by those who worked with him and by fans who literally have nothing more clever to say than just stating the obvious in search of “likes” or “retweets.”  A couple of celebrities told everyone to shut the fuck up with their fake outpouring of love and clarified their version of what a tragedy is (like when masses of people die and not when a drug addicted actor dies) and they got skewered by the media for being insensitive.  HA!  The pot calling the kettle black.  We cannot know what was going through his mind before the fateful moment happened and once again, it’s none of our business.  On paper it looked like he had it all, but if you haven’t learned by now, many times, the best things in life are free despite what reality TV shows about rich people with so much plastic surgery that they look like Barbie Dolls will try and tell you.

A day later, the media reported somewhere between 20 and 70 baggies of heroin were found inside PSH’s apartment and back in the “olden days,” when the facts varied that much, people were fired for not doing their jobs properly.  Now, you can pretty much report anything you want to without having to fact check or face repercussions.  All you have to do now is shout the loudest and your words become fact.  We are still days away from the autopsy which will definitely get fingers wagging when the “I told you so” people come out of the woodwork and get up on their soap boxes.  And it will happen.  It always does.

After that, the funeral will take place and people will get off by seeing photos of his family grieving.  More celebrities will come forward with outpourings of love, despite the fact that dying young automatically makes you a saint in the world’s eyes.  Also, someone will get famous for making a cutesy PSH T-shirt that is hipster-ironic in some way and Buzzfeed will do a list of 467 things that we learned from this whole episode.  One thing they will not report is that drug overdoses WILL kill again, when we are least suspecting it as they have done before and will do so until they cease to exist on this planet (or at this rate, until humans cease to exist on this planet).  That is the real tragedy.  But that’s also life.  So we all need to get over it… or better yet DO SOMETHING about it.  Everyone loves to watch a train wreck because “they can’t take their eyes off it,” but I always say “get out and help instead of just looking because one day, it could be you on that train.”

Happy trails PSH.  Peace and blessings to your family and friends at this difficult time.

 

RIP, Marcia Wallace

Posted by The G on October 26, 2013 under Celebrities | Read the First Comment

Photo and autograph courtesy of the G archives.

Marcia Wallace

Marcia Wallace

Sad news!  Actress Marcia Wallace has passed away at the age of 71, according to the internet.  Marcia Wallace was receptionist Carol Kester on The Bob Newhart Show and was also the voice of Mrs. Krabappel on The Simpsons.  I met Marcia many times over the years and she was always super sweet. I remember the first time I saw her flash her signature smile in person, it really lit up my day. May she rest in peace.

RIP, Gary David Goldberg

Posted by The G on June 24, 2013 under Celebrities | Read the First Comment

Photo and autograph courtesy of the G Archives.

Gary David Goldberg

Gary David Goldberg

If you grew up in the 1980s as I did, you are going to be extra sad when you read on.  “Family Ties” series creator Gary David Goldberg has died.  He was a few days short of his 69th birthday, succumbing to brain cancer.  He also wrote episodes for “The  Bob Newhart Show” and also produced “Lou Grant.”  He won two Emmys, a Peabody award and two Golden Globes for his work.  I had the occasion of meeting Gary David Goldberg several times and he was always super friendly.  Of course, I gushed to him my love for “Family Ties,” and he thanked me for my support!  What a class act.  RIP, Gary David Goldberg!  🙁

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