Joan Rivers Passes, 81


Joan Rivers was one of the funniest women alive and now she is gone. Even though she lived through some personal tragedies in her life, they were never able to grind her down. The loss of her husband and the loss of a friendship with Johnny Carson were but two negative happenings in her life. Joan had been a regular on The Tonight Show to the extent that she replaced him when he went away on vacation. Then another network offered her own show and she accepted the terms, but didn’t inform Johnny that she was about to compete directly with The Tonight Show. Carson never spoke to her again. Her show lasted but a short time.

Joan Rivers reinvented herself many times but always continued entertaining in clubs and theatres. She was remembered for her jewelry items on the Shopping Network. With her daughter Melissa beside her, she hosted the red carpet for many awards shows. Some considered her humour offensive. It might have offended the high and mighty but the rest of us loved the humour. I admired her and told her so during an interview at the former Red Robinson Show Theatre where she appeared many times.

I found her to be a total professional even down to arranging the chairs for our Global TV interview. I asked her who was her greatest inspiration and she said “Phyllis Diller“, without whom many women would never have made it in the world of comedy. She always insisted that she was saying things that the rest of us were thinking but were too polite to say… and that was the essence of her routine. She will be greatly missed.