Monday, January 7, 2013

RIP Huell Howser, I'll Miss You

I had lived in California for two days when, unemployed, I turned on the tv at 2:00 in the afternoon and landed on an episode of California's Gold.

"Oh my gosh! Isn't that WONDERFUL?!" I heard Huell Howser exclaim over the fact that beneath Old Sacramento lies a system of underground tunnels. His enthusiasm was addicting, his folksy, full-mouthed accent giggle-inducing.  I felt that, in discovering Huell Howser, I'd personally discovered a cache of gold.

Huell passed away today, at the age of 67.  A deeply private man, we may never know what ailed him. I wrote the other day about a few personal goals for the new year.  Here's another.  Marvel at every day wonders with the passion and enthusiasm of Huell Howser.

Here are just a few moments of Huell Howser's glory:

"The big deal about In-n-Out was that it was a DRIVE THRU!"

"The wind is pushing the flies . . . I've never seen anything like this . . . these are all flies . . . look out there, OH!"

Addendum: Tonight, when reading my friend Joe Cedillo's memories of Huell Howser, I was reminded of how he helped me through one of the most trying times of my life. When I was in radiation for thyroid cancer, I lay on my couch, too exhausted to do anything but watch TV. Episodes of California's Gold and Road Trip with Huell Howser tapped right into my own cache of hope. My husband called to check on me one day (he was staying with a friend as our apartment was under radioactive quarantine), and I was laugh-crying about the Hot Dog on a Stick episode. He lifted my spirits, he increased my sense of appreciation, and he made me hopeful for the future.  He was really something.


the actor's diet said...

we should throw a RIP huell food party...

Channing said...

That is a WONDERFUL idea!