February 27th, 2008

Tom Lehrer is Smug

it don't matter who else famous died today

But Myron "Yoi!" Cope, long-time sportscaster, inventor of the Terrible Towel and beloved color commentator for the Pittsburgh Steelers, has died at the age of 79.

Time was when every sports city had a fellow like ol' Mahrn, the sportscaster who was a real character, the one you'd watch the games for when your team was in the toilet (and the one who was always mentioned in an apocryphal story about fans watching the game on TV with the sound down so they could hear him on the radio.) Unfortunately Cope was among the very very very last of a dying breed. LA's Chick Hearn ("this game is in the fridge, the light's out, the eggs are coolin, the butter's gettin hard, and the Jell-O's jigglin") is gone. Boston's beloved Johnny Most ("You can't call a foul on me, I'm Moses Malone! The Exalted One!") is gone. Harry Caray is gone. Mel Allen and Red Barber are long gone. Who do we have today who even approaches this level of colorfulness?

These guys didn't just fool around and make us think it was patently unfair that they should get paid to have that much fun (though it's true.) They brought life to the game and they made things more entertaining for everyone. Alas, poor Myron. Double Yoi indeed.