Brigette Bardot is 73, and I’m Not Feeling So Good!

beautiful-bardo.jpgThe sex symbols and the TV stars of my childhood are aging and dying.

Yikes! That can’t be good news.

In fact 2008 is producing a bumper crop of depressing news. Just today Jim McKay departed at age 86. Little lovable Jim McKay and the Wide World of Sports, when McKay was on hand for a sporting event you knew it was important just because he was there to cover it.

Dan Rather is looking more like my grandpa Jack each time I see him. Walter Cronkite is moving from old to very old, and truth be told, Larry King is looking lousy. Dick Martin is dead, Harvey Korman went right behind him, and if the two of them needed a little musical accompaniment Bo Didley came to join them. All of these venerable names, all departed at 80 something and I’m left wondering who’s next. Tim Conway? Ernest Borgnine? Lassie (again)?

And for those childhood celebrities still living the news is almost as frightening. I picked up the news the other morning and their staring up at me from the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle was Brigett Bardot. She had gotten herself in trouble with the French courts for slander. I didn’t know you could sue for slander in France I thought everything they did over there was somehow slanderous.

My eyes raced through the first paragraph, then the second, and finally in the third I found the sad bit of news that I had been looking for. The name followed by the coma followed by the age. Every newspaper article has it, and it’s getting more depressing with each passing year.

So there staring up at me as a spoonful of once hot oatmeal found its way into my mouth was the sad news, “Bardot, 73.” When I was ten I thought that was the size of her bust. Now I know better. The oatmeal slid down like a hard lump in my throat and the reality settled in, one of the great sex icons of my childhood is now 73. That was it, breakfast was over. I had lost my appetite.

Getting older isn’t something you plan, it just happens. I think the two best lines about waking up and realizing your old came from Cary Grant and Casey Stengel, on separate occasions of course.

On Grant’s 80th birthday, the late actor told adoring friends, “If I knew I would live this long I would have taken better care of myself.” In celebrating Stengel’s 80th, the New York Mets threw a party before a huge crowd at Shea Stadium for the legendary Yankee and Mets skipper. Casey walked up to the mike, thanked the crowd for their loving cheers, and in that lovable raspy voice of his he said, “You know most people my age are dead.”

Bardot 73, my God, she could be John McCain’s older sister.

When she hits 80, don’t tell me, I’ll be too old to cry.

Martin Brown
SMW Money Editor