Richard Dawson – Family Feud Host, wasn’t already dead, but now is.

I am awful. I thought Richard Dawson had already passed on. But today, it was reported he died.  There are a bunch of old actors and actresses who will surprise me later when they die, because I already thought they had.

But here, for Dawson, I won’t do a Survey Says! joke.

A rundown of his life here at wikipedia.

Several things I didn’t realize about Richard Dawson – that he was born in England. That he insisted on kissing all the female contestants as a point to those conservative television stations that objected to kissing between different races (Petula Clark kissed Nat King Cole on tv and a bunch of people had a fit;  that apparently stuck with Dawson). That he later married a contestant from Family Feud.

I can’t think of a more entertaining game show host who was so quick-witted and cool. All the game show hosts from the 70s seemed to be about the most enjoyable group of guys ever on tv, like they just stepped over from a restaurant or bar to spend a few minutes playing a game. If it was work, they didn’t make it seem so. Richard Dawson was the boss.

However, here’s a little blooper clip from the Feud that’s pretty funny, showing how one answer can derail the man:

The best games shows have a great host and a great game that allow regular people who don’t win to still have fun.

More funny:

David Foster Wallace – the end. Author passes away

I use my site to think/write out jokes/ideas on news, etc., but occasionally will make mention of something serious. Unfortunately, that has happened this evening, with the report that David Foster Wallace has died, apparently by suicide.

I admit I have not read everything of his, but did recently read the collection of essays in Consider the Lobster, which were excellent.

Consider David Foster Wallace
Consider: David Foster Wallace

He’ s probably best known for his large novel Infinite Jest – which I own but have yet to read yet. It’s just one of those books – you want to read, you hear it’s good, you buy it, but it’s so damn heavy. As someone who earned a MFA, has written very little, and who loves a good essay or novel, I appreciate very much what he did, and the fact that he was teaching English and writing in Southern California.

I don’t know enough about David Foster Wallace to even speculate the reasons for his passing. It’s unfortunate.

At Wikipedia, you can read a bibliography.

UPDATE: A colleague of David’s writes about him here at Huffington Post.

And here’s an interview of David on the Charlie Rose Show from 1997. Even if you’ve never read anything by David, watch it – they cover dozens of topics – film, writing, etc.

Another appearance here on Charlie Rose, with writers Mark Leyner and Jonathan Franzen, having a great discussion on books, reading, and the impact of culture on their writing.

ADDED 9/14/08: I just want to note how embarrassing it is, although not unexpected, that there is no mention of DFW’s passing on television. At least, I haven’t seen one mention of it on any of the major cable news shows – yet I’ve seen the stupid SNL clip from last night a thousand times in 3 hours. This is why people rely on the internet for news.

FINALLY, I want to add this, in light of this news – the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s website, which has useful information for anyone who needs help or knows someone who does, including the phone #1-800-273-TALK. Is it a guarantee they can help? No, it isn’t, but humor me and call if it you think you should.