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Archive for Monday, October 1, 2001

Parting is such sweet sorrow

October 1, 2001

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Goodbye, my friends.

Adios. Auf wiedersehen. Arreviderci. Shalom. Sayonara. Bonjour.

Bonjour means "Good day," you idiot.

This is a very sad time for me, saying goodbye to you, my loyal readers, after all these years. I don't know what I'll do without you. I'll miss you. I love you, I honestly love you.

Oh, no, he's not actually going to write one of those sappy goodbye columns? Could he be that self-absorbed?

I remember the day the column started, Nov. 12, 1989. I got up that morning, showered, ate breakfast, went to the hardware store the night before one of the porch bulbs blew out, and I had to get a replacement; 80 watts. I prefer 60s on the porch because there's less glare. But they were out of 60s, so I got 80s. The next day, Nov. 13, I had to go to the dentist. Did you ever get one of those pains in one your molars, and it's so far back you can't reach it, even with a pencil? So I called my dentist. It was Dr. Shapiro then, before he found out his skin was allergic to the rubber gloves.

Is he going to go through 12 years DAY BY FREAKIN' DAY? Isn't it enough we had to suffer through those endless columns about his dad who collected styrofoam trays? I mean, he wrote 300 columns about those styrofoam trays. I wanted to call his dad and say: "Stop buying chicken, you old goat. Have a pizza delivered, why doncha?"

Of course I want to thank my family.

Here it comes. His sweet baboo. Man, did he milk that kid for material. I hope her college tuition is so enormous it has to be sent up there in a Brinks truck. He owes her that much.

My sweet baboo. My son Michael. My wonderful dog Maggie.

Not the dog!

They were all there for me. They stood by me when the night was cold and the land was dark and the moon was the only light I'd see. But I won't be afraid, no, I won't be afraid just as long as they stand, stand by me.

What about his wife? Why doesn't he ever mention his wife? I think his friend Nancy is his real wife, don't you? Either her or his smart friend Martha. Or maybe his friend Gino is his quote "wife" unquote not that there's anything wrong with that.

As many of you know, I'm leaving this column to take on a new challenge. I have always been about challenges. This one is formidable. I'm going to do a daily television show on ESPN.

Television! With that bald head and that puss? The man looks like one of those souvenir coconuts with a tiki face carved into it. This is a true story: Howard Cosell once looked at him on TV and said, "Doesn't he realize he's unsightly?' And Howard Cosell, you may recall, was not exactly Brad Pitt. And that was 10 years ago, when Tony was, um, less unsightly.

Some people, when they become big stars, forget the people who have helped them along the way. I can assure you that won't happen to me. My friend Nancy, my smart friend Martha, Man About Town Chip Muldoon, my editor of the last three years, Tim ...

Tom.

... that other guy, the one with the dark hair and glasses, their faces are etched upon my mind. I'll never forget them. If I do, I'll simply get my secretary to call them up on her computer list, and I'll have my driver deliver a box of candy or something.

Some of you have come up to me recently and said how sad you are that I won't be writing my column anymore, because it lights up your lives. Over the years, we've become good friends, you and I, and you're devastated by this. You're wondering how you're going to cope with me not being in this space week after week after week.

Can you believe this egomaniac? What a blowhard. I get the paper for the tire ads. The paper will shove something else in this space, and in two weeks we won't even remember the bald guy's name. Hopefully, the next guy will be funny once in a while. That'll be new.

Believe me, I understand. It's tough for me, too. It's an awesome responsibility being the funniest columnist in America.

Yes, and that's why Dave Barry is in 450 papers and you're in The Savannah Shopper.

All I can say to you at this difficult time is that it has been an honor and a privilege to write this column for you. It was always about you.

Spare me. Anyone have a barf bag handy?

But all good things must come to an end. And so goodbye, farewell. If you see me on the street, please say hello. I'll be happy to autograph something for you. Bring a camera in case you want a souvenir photo with me. I miss you already.

Get out. And don't let the door hit you on the behind. TV! That's a joke. You'll be crawling back here for work in three weeks. Maybe we can find you something on the copy desk.

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