Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Wanted : Dead Or Alive

The news that the long running US daytime soap "As The World Turns" is going to be cancelled soon, initially meant nothing to me as I'm not American and I've never seen a single second of the show.

But then the statistic geek in me decided to go surfing to see just how long it HAD been running for and one thing led to another and you know how THAT goes, yadda, yadda.

I found that the longest 'serving' character on the show, Nancy Hughes, has been played byHelen Wagner since 1876 and she's now 137. Ok since April 2nd, 1956 and she's now 91 - but it's still impressive. After all that time playing someone else, she has to be a bit schizophrenic. Or dipsy at least. I bet she's been answering to Nancy or Helen for years and look, both names have the same number of letters. And if you take the 2nd letter of each surname and switch it with the 5th letter of each first name, well then you get two stupid names and I need a break from surfing !

When I searched for details about Helen (I feel we're on first name terms now - as long as I don't mess with the letters), I came upon a site which many senior celebs probably have in their favourites and check every day.

It's a site that documents if a famous person is dead or alive and for once, it contains a list that no one wants to be on. Mind you, if you're an old and seriously befuddled celeb and you read that you're on the dead list, it's bound to confuse you for the rest of the day. Probably not the best day to watch The Sixth Sense !

I spent part of my morning happily scanning both lists mixing ....."wow, I never knew they'd died" with "holy crap are they STILL alive" which probably wouldn't please celebs in either list.
Although I loved that the icon for the alive list was a smiley face and the one for the dead list was a skull, I think an animated grim reaper should sashay across the screen on the day someone moves from one list to the other. In the unlikely event that it's a move from the dead list to the alive list, then the reaper could be shown slumped over, dragging his scythe slowly behind him.

You'd have to go back 2009 years to have seen that happen and I'm not expecting another such event anytime soon.

The list of searches on the site is hilarious.

"People Alive Over 85" makes me wonder why this age was specifically chosen. Does the grim reaper have his cloak dry cleaned and start to put his sandals on when people reach 85 ?

"Who Have You Outlived ?" is another classic, if somewhat depressing, list if there is no one on it when you put in your details. Sorry George Abbott, whoever you are !

There are a few quizzes on the site to keep you amused through the long winter evenings. I like this description.......

In all the Dead or Alive quizzes, see if you can correctly answer who is dead and who is alive. Be sure to come back again because new quizzes are posted every 15 minutes.

I hope their database is well linked as the nature of the site means that the quiz answers could change from one day to the next and I can imagine heated discussions developing.

"I win because Zsa Zsa Gabor is dead."

"No she's not".

"She HAS to be. "

"Nope, she's 92 and going strong. Well relatively speaking."

"Can we play this again tomorrow. Maybe I'll win then ?"

Anyway I'm going to add this site to my other similar morbid sites - the one that lists deaths of notables almost before they, or TMZ, know about it and then the one that lists the last resting places of the rich and famous....and presumably dead.

With that selection of sites I think, like a coroner's body bag, I've got death pretty much covered.


Daphne said...

Terribly morbid of course - - and of course I'm going to look at those sites straight away and will no doubt add them all to my favourites! Why are we so interested in such things? Dunno, but we ARE. Well I am, anyway.

rhymeswithplague said...

You both are weird. I like that in a person.

Jennyta said...

I worry about you, Ian. It must be all that Florida air - it's obviously not doing you any good at all!! Either that or you have too much time on your hands. :)

Silverback said...

Welcome to the 'weird' club Bob as I noticed you went off to look at the site !

Jenny, I hold both hands up high despite all the time on them. I'M RETIRED !!

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