"Thus open the gates of paradise."

In this issue

The Week In Review

14 Jun 2004

It's been a big week in passings, so let's get started:

The Great Eastern Michael Wade, Actor (May 22, 2004)

Michael Wade was the alter ego of Ish Lundrigan, the programming director of the Broadcasting Corporation of Newfoundland. Together with host Paul Moth, Ish hosted The Great Eastern's "In The Vault" segments which aired classic recordings from the early days of the BCN. You can also catch Wade in a handful of films, including "Secret Nation" with Cathy Jones.

Brian Linehan stands next to a giant Genie award in this undated CBC handout photo. Rob Waymen/CP files
PHOTO: Rob Waymen/CP files
Brian Linehan, Interviewer (4 June 2004)

I never liked his work -- know that up front. Linehan died at age 58, and even for someone who I thought was altogether too full of himself when on-air, that's just too young to go.


Ronald Reagan. Ronald Regan, Actor and Politician  (5 June 2004)

Ronald Reagan scared the willies out of me, making my person a willie-free zone, an act I can scarcely forgive, though forgetting is a distinct possibility.

I took a long lunch last Friday to watch his funeral. The stars came out, that's for sure. Margaret Thatcher, Mikhail Gorbachev (check out his web site here), Prince Charles, Brian Mulroney, Lech Walesa, and on it went. There were four eulogies given -- let's see how they scored:

  • Margaret Thatcher -- Her prerecorded message had at least two endings. One is enough, Baroness. 2 stars.
  • Brian Mulroney -- Eloquently delivered, written with the vocabulary of someone who finished at least one university degree. Well-structured, graceful. 5 stars.
  • George Bush (Sr) -- A speech, what can you say? It began, went on, and ended. For a man who failed to construct a complete English sentence in his presidency, I'm willing to cut him some slack. 3 stars.
  • George W. Bush (Jr) -- George read the best speech his money could buy. Slow in starting, but improved as it wore on. Had only one ending. 3 stars.


Ray Charles, Musician (10 June 2004)

Was secretly hoping that the Reagans would invite Ray Charles to Ronald's funeral, but no luck.

Ray had the gift of being able to sell a song. What I mean is -- when he was singing it, you thought it was the best song in the world, the only song you'd ever need, the only thing you wanted to listen to.