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Many of the best recordings played over the years on Dr. Demento's radio program were Stan's, including his masterful takedown of holiday-season commercialism, "Green Chri$tma$." Together with such talents as the late Daws Butler, Mel Blanc, June Foray and Billy May, he gleefully bit the corporate hand that fed him, both in the advertising he created for clients such as Chun King frozen foods and Sunsweet prunes and in his own shows on radio and TV and satirical records such as Stan Freberg Presents the United States of America, Volumes I and II. You can read more about his career in his autobiography, It Only Hurts When I Laugh, in hardcover but now probably out of print. And he went on to influence a number of other artists, including "Weird Al" Yankovic ,"the great" Luke Ski and even the Beatles.
Deepest sympathies to his widow Hunter, his son and daughter, and all the rest of his family, friends, colleagues and fans. And to Mr. Freberg himself, thank you for a lifetime of laughter.
She was one of the first friends I made in northeastern US fandom, way back in the late 1980s when I left my home state of Louisiana for good. I was one of many she cajoled into doing stuff for whatever club, convention or other fanac with which she was involved (usually artwork, in my case) and, as one of her many mourners notes today, it was simply impossible to say no to her.
Best-selling sfnal author John Scalzi has a far more eloquent tribute to her than I could ever muster, posted at his blog here. (UPDATE, 3/25: The web-based version of Mike Glyer's long-running fanzine File 770 has an even better one here.) The last I saw of them was at Loncon 3 (last year's Worldcon) in London, England, UK last August, and neither of them looked any the worse for wear (though John was riding a scooter to get up and down that gawdawful long hall, and I for one did not blame him in the slightest).
My deepest and most heartfelt sympathies to her husband John, her children and all the rest of her family, her friends uncountable, her fellow SMOFs and all the fans she served so tirelessly as a mentor. Wherever your questing soul may be, Peggy Rae, I hope you know that you are loved and missed more than you can possibly imagine.
Most of you reading this already know what a significant figure he was in my life and why, so I won't bother rehashing his career and achievements here. I only wish I'd finally gotten to meet him before this sad day. Deepest sympathies to his widow Susan and the rest of his family, friends, colleagues and fans...and thank you, sir, wherever your soul may now be.
For those like me who wish for a bit more closure to the story of one of the most beloved characters ever to grace the small screen. Dedicated, with the greatest of love and respect, to the memory of Nicholas Courtney.
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Credit sffilk with the inspiration for this: he asked on Facebook whether there was filk at MidSouthCon, and I replied instinctively to the effect that if there wasn't already, there would be if at least two filkers showed up. Then I wondered publicly whether this obvious logical follow-up had been committed by anyone else yet, and he was foolish enough to say "No." Soooo...( Collapse )
Most people these days remember him as the voice of NBC's Saturday Night Live, on which he served until the end of its 39th season last year. Some of us are old enough to remember hearing him in his earlier best-known gig, as announcer on the original Jeopardy! with Art Fleming for 11 years on the same network. ("Weird Al" Yankovic is another one of us who remembers, as he proved some while back by inviting Pardo to do a cameo in his now-classic song parody and video, "I Lost On Jeopardy!" back in the 1980s.) But his career goes all the way back to the late 1930s and radio as well as early TV, almost all of it with the Peacock.
He was the voice of NBC in much the same way the late Ernie Anderson was for ABC ("The Luuuuuve Boat!") They both had distinctive voices and styles, and both introduced me to a great deal of the entertainment I had on the tube growing up. Belated sympathies to his five children, five grandkids and three great-grandkids, and thanks.
What follows back of the cut is a short-short I wrote of a scene that never happened in the show, but damned well ought to have: the defective detective being honored at an official ceremony for his work by his city's then real-life mayor (who turned up in the show and got just as peeved at Monk as nearly every real-life celebrity he encountered, much like Dr. Sheldon Cooper later on in The Big Bang Theory...except Monk's not nearly as obnoxious). Let me know what you think.
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