Subscribe Now!
GannettUSA Today

Thursday, August 09, 2007


It was New Year's Eve 2004, and a bottle of bubbly awaited in the refrigerator, but Kathy and I decided not to pop the cork.

How could we celebrate when so many people had been killed, or their lives ruined, by the Dec. 26 tsumani?

I think it was my suggestion to abstain in observation of the stricken.

Stupid idea.

It turned out to be our last New Year's Eve together. We will never drink to the new year again.

So I say unto you, brethren and sistren, that if thou hast them, thou shouldst smoke them.

My father was a great believer that you should celebrate while the celebratin's good. And you know something? He was right. For the last few months of his life, he'd lost the power to swallow, so he wasn't drinking any champagne, either.

Show-biz folk say, "The show must go on." I'm a great believer in that. To we journalistic types, deadlines are king.

Heck, when Kathy died, my brother and sister-in-law had to talk me out of coming to the office! It's not that we're cold. It's just our training.

I read a story -- one I like to assume isn't entirely apocryphal -- that Lou Costello once told his little son to listen to his daddy on the radio that night. Tragically, the boy drowned in the Costellos' swimming pool. But Lou didn't cancel his radio performance. The story goes -- and this is the possibly apocryphal part, but I dearly hope not -- that Lou said that he'd told his little boy to listen, and somewhere -- heaven? -- the boy would be listening. Lou didn't want to let him down.



Post a Comment

<< Home