Hello Dear Readers! Lately I’ve found myself hanging out with a lot of really fun dead people!
You see, I’ve been surfing YouTube and watching clips of the old talk shows of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. These shows are a treasure trove of legendary showbiz types. Here’s a couple of people I have a new appreciation for thanks to YouTube videos.
“There is a fine line between genius and insanity. I have erased this line.”
Oscar Levant was a pianist, composer, humorist, actor and author and was famous for his witticisms in radio, television and the movies. He suffered from neurosis and hypochondria and he was frequently committed to mental hospitals by his wife.
When asked by Jack Parr what he did for exercise, Oscar Levant replied: “I stumble and then fall into a coma.“
Still, he was talented as all get out and had a sharp wit and boy oh boy could he play the piano!
“In some situations I was difficult, in odd moments impossible, in rare moments loathsome, but at my best unapproachably great.”
Oscar Levant died of a heart attack at age 65. His death was discovered by his wife when she went to get him for an interview with Candice Bergen (Murphy Brown) who was a photo-journalist at the time.
Oscar Levant wrote three memoirs: A Smattering of Ignorance, The Unimportance of Being Oscar Levant and the one I just ordered, The Memoirs of an Amnesiac.
“I asked the waiter, ‘Is this milk fresh?’ He said, ‘Lady, three hours ago it was grass.”
“Housework can’t kill you, but why take a chance?”
We all remember Phyllis Diller as the wild-haired wife of Fang. But she was also an accomplished concert pianist and performed with orchestras all over the country as Dame Illya Dillya. She also loved to paint and many of her paintings have been bought by art collectors.
“My mother-in-law had a pain beneath her left breast. Turned out to be a trick knee.”
Phyllis Diller was the mother of six children, three of whom she outlived. One of her daughters suffered from schizophrenia and was institutionalized for most of her life.
After watching YouTube clips of her, I learned that she attributed her success in life to a book she described as life changing called The Magic of Believing by Claude M. Bristol. She talks about it here:
The Magic of Believing is free online. I found a free audio copy of it here: http://insideabundance.com/the-magic-of-believing-by-claude-bristol/
Well that’s all we have time for today, Dear Readers, I hope you enjoyed the very first installment of Dead People I Love.
Until next time . . . I love you