This Day in Death

7.28.14: NPR Journalist Margot Adler – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 1:46 am July 30, 2014

MARGOT_ADLERPfft! Speak for yourself, sign; I always pictured myself as more of a werewolf fan, mainly because all that body hair would really go a long way towards covering up a pretty unmanageable outbreak of chest acne. Plus, I bet nobody gives werewolves shit about eating pigeon meat.


Being a journalist is hard, not least of all because nobody takes my fedora with an index card labeled “PRESS” on it seriously. It’s an endless cycle of gathering information and writing it down and then changing it all because it turns out you made most of it up and your boss isn’t cool with that for whatever reason. It’s why I like doing this blog all by myself; Sometimes you just know a story’s true, and no cartoonish caricature of what I assume an editor looks like can shake that faith. Although I will admit that, after 300-plus posts, there may have been, like, maybe two or three pieces of information I possibly reported without vigorously fact-checking. Sorry about that. However, when I stated that getting a crown put on your tooth legally makes that tooth the king of your mouth… well, I’ll stand by that one til the day I die.

Oh yeah! Dying! It turns out that Margot Adler, journalist for NPR since the late 70s, has done just that. Died, I mean. See, haters? I can journalist!

Margot joined the NPR staff as a general assignment reporter in 1979. She went on to cover everything from the beginnings of the AIDS epidemic to confrontations involving the Ku Klux Klan in Greensboro, N.C., to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

I’m just gonna note here that it seems awfully suspicious that she was always around when these terrible things went down. I’m just saying. Moving on.

Margot had a long-standing interest in the occult. “Margot was not only a brilliant reporter, she was also a Wiccan priestess and a leader in the Pagan community,” Low Smith notes. “That was deeply important to her, and she wrote a seminal book about that world: Drawing Down the Moon. She also wrote a memoir called Heretic’s Heart.”

It may seem startling that someone in an industry as traditional as broadcasting would be so deeply invested in the counterculture, but keep in mind that Edward R. Murrow used to be the High Priest of the Church of Satan (alright, fine: that’s four things I haven’t looked up). I’ve also heard rumors that Sam Donaldson’s face is made of Silly Putty, but that’s not really relevant so I’m going to go back and edit that part out later if I don’t forget.

Source: NPR

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4.16.13: “Voice of the NFL” Pat Summerall – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 7:23 am April 23, 2013

PAT_SUMMERALLSummerall, seen here with the shaved polar bear that FOX would sub in whenever John Madden was too hammered to wake up. Some people will tell you they can tell the difference between an authentic Madden broadcast and the ones the bear held down, but those people are probably just trying to impress you.


As I’ve copy and pasted to you many times before, we don’t do many sports posts around these parts. That shit is boring, and if I felt like memorizing a bunch of confusing rules just to get through my day I would’ve read those Megan’s Law forms the judge gave me. But the “voice of the NFL” Pat Summerall died last week, and we’re gonna cover it because I think talking about football might make me seem manlier. I’ve really gotta do something to balance out all of those Blossom repeats I’ve been watching on Oxygen lately.

George Allen “Pat” Summerall was born May 10, 1930, in Lake City, Fla., a rural area midway between Jacksonville and Tallahassee. He was an all-around athlete and attended the University of Arkansas on a basketball scholarship. Once there he became an all-Southwest Conference selection in basketball and football. He graduated with a degree in education and later earned a master’s degree in Russian history.

Wait, a football player with a master’s in Russian history? In the real world that’s like getting a PhD in Everything. What happened to the standard bullshit BA in Communications degree that every pro athlete usually gets? You don’t have to aim so high, it’s not like we expect much from you guys in that area. Charles Barkley only has an associates in Doritos, and I’m pretty sure he just made that field up. But studying Russian history probably involves actual work. Figuring out how to pronounce those backwards R’s, for one thing. That’s a semester right there.

Source: USA Today

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1.27.13: Philadelphia Broadcasting Icon Sally Starr – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 5:46 pm January 29, 2013


SALLY_STARREveryone was pretty hot before those egghead scientists went and invented color. Who asked for that, anyway? The world is hard enough to keep track of without all of those reds and blues always getting in the damn way.


I think the basics were pretty well covered via the headline up there, but if you really need it spoon-fed to you, Philadelphia broadcasting icon Sally Starr is dead today. Fun fact: Pennsylvania’s primary function is to serve as a buffer against New Jersey, thus ensuring that the latter makes direct contact with as few other states as possible. It’s sorta like America’s Dental Dam.

For two hours a day, five days a week until 1971, Starr hosted “Popeye Theater.” Dressed in her famed spangled cowgirl outfit, she introduced “Popeye” cartoons and Three Stooges shorts, and welcomed celebrity guests to her live telecasts.

She also dispensed life lessons – about everything from fire prevention to getting along with others – to her young fans, and brightened their days by sending great big “smoocheroonies” their way, along with such signature lines as “I hope you feel as good as you look, because you sure look good to Your Gal Sal,” and “Love ya lots! Love, luck and lollipops.”

It may seem kinda quaint in hindsight, but that kind of thing can really have a positive effect on developing young minds. Nowadays all the kids are forced to turn to rainbow parties and butt chugging and Rhianna songs for self-confidence. You’ve really gotta get to these kids early in order to keep them on the right path to psychological maturity. It’s why I’ve stepped in to fill the void with my “Touch a Kid Where it Counts!” preteen youth group series. Turnout has been a little low so far, but I think volunteering to pick the kids up right from school is a timesaver that their parents are really going to appreciate. And driving them in a van with tinted windows allows them to focus on their homework during the trip without getting distracted by the outside world.


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12.9.12: Astronomer and Television Host Sir Patrick Moore – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 5:38 pm December 17, 2012

Moore, seen here in one of David Bryne’s trademark hilarious oversized suits. Dude, I still don’t get it.

Astronomer and broadcasting legend Sir Patrick Moore is dead today of unspecified illness. Unfortunately, since he was English you’re going to need to run this post through your TDiD Language Converter to strip out all of the superfluous ‘U’s and references to Spotted Dick.

For over 50 years, Moore hosted the classic BBC program The Sky at Night in-between terrorizing Gotham City with bird-themed crime sprees and popping out of the ‘O’ on the Monopoly box. Why don’t more of the recently deceased have funny accessories? It’s all been downhill since Michael Jackson took epaulets with him to the grave.

Speaking on his 88th birthday last year, the legendary broadcaster said: “I shan’t have a funeral. They can take my bits and use them for experiments and chuck the rest away. In my will I’ve left a sum of money to have a party when I’ve gone.”

Good for him. I’m getting pretty sick of treating the human body with respect. Oh, great design work, God; All dangling flesh sacks and easily-stabbed exteriors. Where are the exo-skeletons, the camouflage skin, the heat vision? I can’t even discharge an emergency supply of poisonous ink for use against my enemies. Plus this vestigial tail isn’t getting me anywhere with the ladies.

Source: Digital Spy

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