Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Rant #521: Today's Your Birthday

Now that the Weiner thing is all over the place, I thought I would break away from that dumbness for a few moments and let you know that two talented people celebrate their birthdays today.

Although the two people are still vibrant today, the only thing they really share is that they came of age--and into our notice--during the 1960s.

Don Grady, the talented kid actor and musician on the "My Three Sons" TV show, and Joan Rivers, the groundbreaking comedienne, both were born on this date, in 1944, and 1933, respectively.

Grady, whose real last name is Agrati, actually came on the scene in the late 1950s as one of the stars of "The Mickey Mouse Club," then segued over to "My Three Sons," one of the most popular TV sitcoms of all time. It ran from 1960 to 1972, first on ABC, then CBS.

Originally, Grady--as Robbie Douglas--played the kid we could most identify with, the middle child who meant well, but always got into trouble.

Then, as the show matured and casting changes came into play, Grady became a straighter arrow, and followed in the footsteps of his dad Steve (Fred MacMurray) as the leader of his own family of three sons (triplets).

After the show, Grady remained active behind the scenes as a composer and singer, and he has put out a number of CDs. He wrote the theme to the long-running Phil Donahue program.

Rivers, who real last name is Molinsky, was one of the trailblazing female comics of her day, along with Phyllis Diller, Totie Fields, and a few others.

She talked about the American experience as the Jewish wife, or the Jewish experience as an American wife. Whatever way it was, it was funny, and her numerous appearances on "The Ed Sullivan Show" cemented her popularity.

She rose through the ranks, and eventually was one of Johnny Carson's replacement hosts when he took off for vacation, which was pretty often.

She had her own talk show, which rankled Carson, and after the suicide of her husband, she reinvented herself as a fashion chronicler, along with her daughter, Melissa.

Two more disparate personalities you couldn't find, but they do share the same birthday.

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