I got an urgent breakfast invitation from my friend and E! News celebrity death correspondent, Giddy Golightly. We met at the Mom's Country Cholesterol and Vegan Homestyle Diner which caters to the health conscious hipster and the walking cardiac case. As I dug into my biscuits and sausage gravy, Holly sipped on an organic pomegranate smoothie and laid out her problem.
GIDDY: How can you eat that stuff? Okay, so Walter Cronkite died and I have to cover it. What's my hook? I mean, if a music superstar or actor dies, they mostly do it young and tragically while they are still relevant. Cronkite is that old news guy, right? Or was that Captain Kangaroo? I get them confused.
ME: Cronkite was a the news guy who comforted our parents when JFK died. Kangaroo was the kid's show host who comforted the children when Bunny Rabbit stole the carrots. Captain Kangaroo was the father of Mr. Conductor from the Thomas the Tank Engine show.
GIDDY: Oooooohhhh. Okay. That helps. Wait. No it doesn't. I'm covering Cronkite. Whose father was he?
ME: Cronkite was everyone's favorite Uncle Walter. But aren't you also covering the death of Gordon Waller? He died yesterday too.
GIDDY: BLANK STARE
ME: Of Peter and Gordon. Now, you might confuse them with Chad and Jeremy.
GIDDY: I know. Right? Wait. What?
ME: Peter and Gordon, Chad and Jeremy. They were part of the "British Invasion."
GIDDY: Oh my god. you give me JFK's death and now the Revolutionary War? These are things from history class for my audience. (SHE GRABBED A FORK FULL OF MY SAUSAGE GRAVY)
ME: No, the British invasion was the Beatles, the Stones, the Dave Clark Five and all those groups. Peter and Gordon had a leg up because Peter Asher's sister was Jane Asher - Paul McCartney's girlfriend. But Chad and Jeremy played "The Redcoats" on the Dick Van Dyke show.
GIDDY (TAKING A BITE OF MY HASH BROWNS): Like I said, Revolutionary War. I'm not stupid.
ME: No. So, anyway, there's your connection. Cronkite is famous for his JFK and space program coverage in the 60s and Peter and Gordon were stars in the 60s.
GIDDY: So who's the third one? I explained to you how they die in threes, right?
ME: Well, Robert McNamara died a couple weeks ago. He was the architect of the Viet Nam war in the 60s. Don't confuse him with the band leader.
GIDDY: BLANK STARE
ME: Nevermind. But there's also Dallas McKennon, who died a few days ago. He was the voice of Gumby, Buzz Buzzard and Archie Andrews in cartoons.
GIDDY (FRUSTRATED): I asked for your help and you just try and confuse me. Eddie Murphy was Gumby. I wish he'd died. People at least know who Eddie Murphy is.
ME: (INCREDULOUS STARE) Um, they made a cartoon out of Eddie's Gumby character and Dallas McKennon did the voice. And "Dallas" goes with JFK's assassination covered by Cronkite. So now you have 4 connections instead of three.
GIDDY: I'm going with Gumby. No one cares about McNamara and the Viet Nam War, right? I wonder if SNL will have Eddie Murphy on to do a tribute to Gumby? Are you going to eat all your bacon?