Tuesday, August 07, 2007

"This may be the end of Spider-man."

. . . And it certainly was for Hal Fishman, who passed away this morning.

August 7th, 2007

If you live in Los Angeles, there are two TV news anchors that you automatically know, no matter who you are. Hal Fishman was one.* He was seventy-five years old, and they kept him at the anchor desk night after night, despite the superficial, youth-and-beauty-obsessed nature of L.A. television.

He just seemed to me like a respectable, decent man of integrity, the way Walter Cronkite did to my parents' generation. He was on the air for almost fifty years, one of those stalwart TV personalities that we grow to love (or at least feel affection for) simply due to familiarity.

And I certainly liked the man. There was something so affably goofy about his face, his slightly-less-than-iconic voice, and the absurd name Hal Fishman was so surreal, you'd never forget it.

I, and a little trio of friends, worked at the same office in Culver City for a couple of years, and we would talk about Hal Fishman all the time . . . specifically, a KTLA commercial they showed a lot where people were a little too exuberant about Channel Five anchorman Hal Fishman. We didn't get how anybody could be that excited about the man, despite being on camera at the time.

So we joked about people in bed, climaxing to "Hal Fishmaaaan!!" coming up with more and more elaborate scenarios wherein . . .

Well, I'm digressing.

Also, around that time, someone gave me a poster of Jedi Master Yoda with Hal Fishman's superimposed head on it that I put up in my cubicle. It was an odd effect, prompting people passing by to say, "Is that Hal Fishman?" and "You should be fired."

I will look around for it and stick it up here if I find it.

Wait, this has spiraled out of control. I was meaning to talk about how a respectable dude he was, and that he worked up to last week, and now he's dead, and how I was the only person in Walmartland to exclaim, "Hal Fishman!" when he appeared in SPIDER-MAN 3.

Okay, maybe I should leave him alone and go back to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." A place where nobody ever dies.

Hal Rishman Outfield

*The other was Lauren Sanchez, but not for the same reason.

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