RIP, Mickey Rooney

I was not going to write about him (never saw any of his movies and didn’t like the man much when I saw him on talk shows), but then I got this tweet from my buddy Frank Chow who blogs here:

And the link goes to Breakfast at Tiffanys:

I think I’ll let Frank’s tweet speak for me, too. What a shame he never apologized.

RIP, Harold Ramis

My Favorite Ghostbuster, Dr. Egon Spengler, will haunt my dreams tonight:

Harold Ramis has gone to that rewrite in the sky. He was 69 (way too young). Besides Ghostbusters, he wrote and directed Caddyshack and Groundhog Day amongst many other fine, fine comedies of my youth.

Here’s a nice tribute:

He will be missed.

RIP Bob Casale

Mr. Casale was one of the founders of the legendary new wave band Devo. He died today of a heart attack at the age of 61, which is way too young.

CNN has a full bio, he was a lot more than the Devo bass player, D-E-V-O is a finer obit accomplishment than most. He will be missed.

UPDATE: Mountjoy eulogizes Mr. Casale:

DonnieMountjoy: @Tengrain

Vale Bob Casale,
Devo’s talented string man.
(*doffs Energy Dome*)

#Devo #FreedomOfChoice #GirlUWant #HaikuMaster

RIP Sid Caesar

The man and the myth has gone on to the two-drink minimum in the sky. Caeser was 91, which is extra-innings no matter how you look at it.

I’m told that if there had never been a Sid Caesar that there never would have been a Saturday Night Live, and certainly the world would be a different place without the talents he found and cultivated: Neil Simon, Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Mel Tolkin, Lucille Kallen, Larry Gelbart, and Woody Allen. That alone is quite a legacy.

(CNN has a fitting tribute.)

RIP, Phillip Seymour Hoffman

Mr. Hoffman was found dead in his apartment in NYC, he was 46. The cause of death is not officially stated, but it looks like a heroin overdose.

Hoffman, I think, was one of the greatest actors of his generation. There was no role that was too big or too small for him to own. From Capote to The Talented Mr. Ripley, and of course Boogie Nights and everything in between, he made it all look so easy. Hoffman could make a (NSFW) dirty phone call in Happiness that was so cringeworthy it became high art:

Hoffman will be missed.

Satan throws another log on the fire…


…to welcome home a favorite son:

The Republican Party lost one of its most generous backers Saturday with the death of Dallas billionaire Harold Simmons, who was also a top patron of independent political groups on the right.

Simmons, whose death was reported by the Dallas Morning News, donated more than $25 million to Republican candidates, parties and their allies in the past three election cycles, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan research organization.

What the article doesn’t mention is that he was the funder behind the Swiftboating of John Kerry, so essentially he was Chimpy’s election buyer.


RIP Peter O’Toole

The actor Peter O’Toole who found stardom in David Lean’s masterpiece Lawrence of Arabia, has died aged 81, his family has annouced.

The acclaimed leading man who overcame stomach cancer in the 1970s passed away at the Wellington hospital in London following a long illness.

His daughter Kate O’Toole said: “His family are very appreciative and completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of real love and affection being expressed towards him, and to us, during this unhappy time. Thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts.”

Besides being a bonifide hearth throb, O’Toole was not just another pretty face. The man could chew up the scenery with the best of them. While I think he is best known for Lawrence of Arabia, my favorite O’Toole film will always be My Favorite Year, a comedy. O’Toole was brilliant in it, playing himself only even larger than life:

There’s not many times I’ve ever wished to meet a star, but if I could have met one, damn, Peter O’Toole is the one I’d have loved to have met.

He will be missed.

RIP Nelson Mandela

The Spitballing flag at MPS World HQ is at half-mast as Nelson Mandela, one of the great good men of this world, has died.

I’m sure that everywhere there will be worthy tributes to Mandela, but I found that Right Wing Watch has a unique perspective: they’ve documented many of the indignities that Mandela suffered at the hands of the Xristian Xrazies and Republicans. It’s a great read, and reminds us that the Xrazies have been crazy for a long while and any hope that they might be redeemed are just that: hopes.

Mr. Mandela changed the world for the better, and he will be greatly missed.