N is for Noteworthy? (ABC W)

A former contestant on 16 and Pregnant (that’s a show?) recently passed away.

For the longest time, I have been fascinated by what people are considered to be famous. The late Andy Rooney, who was best known for his commentary on the CBS News program 60 Minutes from 1978 to 2011, did a special around 1979, where he mused who was noteworthy. To him, Paul McCartney was famous, but Michael Jackson was not. Of course, this was before the album Thriller came out; I suspect Rooney would have altered his opinion.

In the days prior to 157 cable channel, it was pretty easy in the United States to ascertain that whoever was on national television had a modicum of fame. That is no longer the case. A former contestant on 16 and Pregnant (that’s a show?) recently passed away, and it was reported in my local paper; of course, I never heard of her.

There’s a database called Datasets I belong to, and it put out, at the end of this past year, an international list of “celebrity deaths”. The roster for April 11, 2016 included:

Ed Snider, 83 – American sports executive (Comcast Spectacor, Philadelphia Flyers, Philadelphia 76ers)
Doug Banks, 57 – American radio personality (The Doug Banks Radio Show)
João Carvalho, 28 – Portuguese mixed martial arts fighter
Hokie Gajan, 56 – American football player and broadcaster (New Orleans Saints)
Veenu Paliwal, 44 – Indian motorcyclist
Alan Hurd, 78 – English cricketer.
Alvin Lubis, 37 – Indonesian musician.
Miss Shangay Lily, 53 – Spanish drag queen.
Steve Quinn, 64 – British rugby league player (York, Featherstone)
Albert Filozov, 78 – Russian actor.
Emile Ford, 78 – Saint Lucian singer (“What Do You Want to Make Those Eyes at Me For?”) and sound engineer.
Édgar Perea, 81 – Colombian politician and football commentator.
Tony Ayers, 82 – Australian public servant.
Peter J. Jannetta, 84 – American neurosurgeon (Allegheny General Hospital).
Huntly D. Millar, 88 – Canadian medical technology executive.
Yura Halim, 92 – Bruneian politician, Chief Minister (1967–1972) and lyricist (national anthem)
Richard Ransom, 96 – American businessman (Hickory Farms).
Anne Gould Hauberg, 98 – American arts patron, founder of the Pilchuck Glass School
Ruth Gilbert, 99 – New Zealand poet.2016-04-11
Dame Marion Kettlewell, 102 – British naval officer, Director of the Wrens (1966–1970)
Mohsen Gheytaslou, 25–26 – Iranian soldier (65th Airborne Special Forces Brigade).
A. R. Surendran, no data – Sri Lankan lawyer
Tibor Ordina, 45 – Hungarian track and field athlete

I know NONE of these 23 people, save for Ford, who I heard of only vaguely. I did read Ransom’s obit. Let’s try February 13.

Bořek Šípek, 66 – Czech architect and designer
Flakey Dove, 30 – British racehorse, winner of the 1994 Champion Hurdle
Trifon Ivanov, 50 – Bulgarian footballer (national team)
Slobodan Santrač, 69 – Serbian football player (Yugoslavia) and manager
Barry Jones, 74 – New Zealand Roman Catholic prelate
Giorgio Rossano, 76 – Italian footballer.
Antonin Scalia, 79 – American judge, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court (since 1986)
Nathan Barksdale, 54 – American heroin dealer, dramatized in The Wire
Bud Webster, 63 – American science fiction and fantasy writer.
Angela Bairstow, 73 – English badminton player.
Robin Ghosh, 76 – Bangladeshi composer.
Avigdor Ben-Gal, 79 – Israeli general, GOC Northern Command (1977–1981)
Yvonne Barr, 83 – Irish virologist, discovered Epstein–Barr virus
O. N. V. Kurup, 84 – Indian poet, recipient of the Jnanpith Award (2007)
Mike Shepherdson, 85 – Malaysian Olympic hockey player (1956) and cricketer (national team).
Edward J. McCluskey, 86 – American electrical engineer.
Sir Christopher Zeeman, 91 – British mathematician.
Rafael Moreno Valle, 98 – Mexican military physician and politician, Governor of Puebla (1969–1972), Secretary of Health (1964–1968).

Of the 17 people, and one horse, listed, the only one I had unequivocally heard of was Scalia, the SCOTUS justice whose vacancy President Obama was not allowed to fill. I do remember reading the obituaries of Ghosh and Zeeman.

I thought to write this when Zsa Zsa Gabor died in 2016. While she was in some 30 movies, she was most famous for being famous, a precursor to Paris Hilton or those darn Kardashians.

In December, Arthur posted YouTube Rewind: The Ultimate 2016 Challenge plus some 2016 music mashups. I knew hardly anyone in these videos – I must be getting old – but I didn’t care at all.

ABC Wednesday – Round 20

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

16 thoughts on “N is for Noteworthy? (ABC W)”

  1. I’m with you Scalia is the only one I recognize. A heroine dealer who was the basis of a movie does not really hit my top ten.
    Ann

  2. The only one in those mentioned that I had heard of was second rate
    entertainer ….Emile Ford of ‘What do want to make those eyes at me for’ fame ?
    Di.
    ABCW team.xx

  3. I think that many people get over- & underrated … the title famous makes a person not a better / lesser person then the next other person…

    “famous’ is different per person I guess

  4. I guess it may mean famous in a certain “field” so if you’re not involved in that field, you probably wouldn’t know them. The only one I “knew” was Scalia, too. As for Michael Jackson, he did become famous for his music but infamous for his lifestyle. At least McCartney hasn’t really had any infamy in his life unless you count his second marriage – big mistake!

    Leslie
    abcw team

    PS: Thanks for not giving away the name of the play. I wonder how many will catch the allusion. *smile*

  5. Well Roger ~ I am glad you didn’t know many of the ‘famous people’ ~ I was beginning to feel I was on ‘another planet’ ~ and probably am since I am aging also ~ so that is definitely going to put me on ‘another planet’ `and I don’t care either ~ thanks

    Wishing you a Happy Week ~ ^_^

  6. I hope “someone” knows one of these well known people:):)
    Hey, your comment was that your contribution this week would be from Paris?? Is it a typo, or meant Hollywood, or … are you fudging, fibbing? the latter 2 slang words I heard the first time in TX, and had NO IDEA what they referred to:)

  7. Was Emile Ford a one hit wonder for it is the only song I know him for singing. Steve Quinn was a very good Rugby League goal kicker for Featherstone Rovers but I don’t think he would be known outside the RL heartlands. Scalia I knew about only because of his death and that is my grand total, 3. I never recogise anyone nowadays and sometimes feel like those old judges of the past that used to say things like “and tell me who are the Beatles”.

  8. It depends on the field, which you are interested in. Eg. there are many ‘famous’ actors and actresses in Poland and I don’t know them, because I don’t watch soap operas…

  9. I got three for each day, though one of them was the horse, and I knew her mostly because she made it to age 30, not common for racehorses.

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