Sunday, February 26, 2006

Men of many faces

Don Knotts died Friday at the age of 81.

To my parents' generation, he was Barney Fife. To me, he was Barney Fife, Ralph Furley, The Incredible Mr. Limpet, a funny guy in damn near every Disney movie from the 70s (or so it seemed), a guest on Scooby-Doo and The Muppet Show, and, well, you get the idea.

He was everywhere.

And no matter what, he was making me laugh. As a kid, I had the most respect for people who made me laugh. I look forward to sharing Don's body of work with my son, who already has a pretty healthy appreciation for comedy.

Darren McGavin, who starred with Don Knotts in "No Deposit, No Return" and "Hot Lead and Cold Feet," died Saturday. He was 83, which surprised me. For some reason, I thought he was a bit younger.

I'd bet it's because 90% of the time I see him on TV, it's as Ralphie's crusty dad in "A Christmas Story."

"Not a finga!"

Brody isn't even 3 yet, but I think he's seen this movie about 12,000 times.

Abe Vigoda is still alive. He turned 85 on Friday.

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