I remembered them, those television stars of the sixties and seventies. They all three died this last week: Tim Conway, Doris Day and Peggy Lipton. I was much too young to appreciate Lipton’s career as an undercover detective in Mod Squad, but did see her a couple times on Twin Peaks when I was channel surfing and didn’t have anything better to watch, ( I was never a big ABC or Twin Peaks fan).
Tim Conway, on the other hand killed me on The Carol Burnett Show. His antics and improvisation was intense and insane. The characters he created are timeless. I can’t remember their names, but did remember the hijinks, the slapstick and his whimsical expressions that left me in stitches.
Doris Day had her own TV show and it was more like what Lucille Ball did at that same time, though I doubt they were competing. I also remember seeing her on a couple of non-musical movies that were funny. I heard her sing a pair of oldies songs she did back in the forties and fifties. Later on, I guess she was into the animal rights cause. She lived a long life, as did the other two.
I was struck by something a news commentator said about Doris Day. That she wasn’t into self-grandising and somehow felt guilty by her celebrity. The reason that struck me as odd was that no one that I know forced her to be a singer and later an actress. The roles she played were not thrust upon her with a gun to her head. She sought those roles and went out of her way to sing those songs in a recording studio. Her final wishes were that she didn’t want the trappings of her stardom; a monument, or even a grave marker to show where she’s buried, if that was what she wanted.
I would imagine, my generation is the last that even remembers Doris Day because this new generation could care less. She is a historic asterisk from a time way before them.
Those people are a part of my collective memory now and will be there when I breathe my last breath. They made me appreciate their talent, laugh at their wit, and was spellbound by their abilities. I will miss them.