Good night, Mr. White

A fond farewell to a local legend  
By PHILLIPE & JORGE  |  August 23, 2006

Phillipe and Jorge were mightily saddened last week when we learned of the death of longtime friend, confidante, and jokester Doug White right after our deadline. The Channel 10 news anchor — rightly described as a Vo Dilun “icon” by all and sundry — had endured a long battle with cancer.

True to his low-key (but highly attentive) approach to his profession, Doug had asked his colleagues not to mention anything on air about his illness, other than to say he was on medical leave. But P&J’s pals at WJAR kept us well-informed of his condition, and we knew he was fighting the good fight until the end.

It wasn’t necessarily evident on camera (unless he was absolutely roasting Gary Ley’s balls after a flawed weather report), but Doug had a magnificent sense of humor. He had to, because his notorious “helmet head” hairdo became as treasured in the Biggest Little as Mayor Buddy “Vincent A.” Cianci’s variety of toupees. People would invariably ask your superior correspondents if it was indeed Doug’s real hair. It was. (Just check out the pure white coif of his brother Randy, a Little Rhody D.A., to verify that hair as thick and snowy as a Joe Namath shag carpet runs in the family.)

In fact, one of the funniest memories we have of Doug was when we were co-hosting a Channel 36 telethon for Muffy Farmer. She spontaneously offered the opportunity for the highest bidder to muss up White’s hair to prove it was indeed the real deal. Although she had to do it herself once the bids came in, it was a hysterical moment in public TV, and left us doubled over in laughter, along with everyone else in the studio, while Doug grinned and bore it.

To Doug’s wife, Barbara (“The Captain”), who is revered by White’s former colleagues, and his entire family, P&J offer our deepest sympathy, but hope that they can always recall what a wonderful man he was and be happy and proud of that. He is greatly missed.

Broadcast snooze
What’s up, Doc?

Well, if you follow what is known as the “mainstream media,” the focus is now on a likely delusional, gender-conflicted Ed Grimley impersonator (for those of you who recall Martin Short’s Pat Sajak-worshipping character with the Nixon-level pants belt-line and a front cowlick that could stop a locomotive) who claims to have been involved with the murder of JonBenet Ramsey and who was recently teaching second grade in Thailand. (You can’t make this stuff up, save for tooting some opium with Samuel Coleridge: “In Xanadu did Kubla Khan a stately pleasure dome decree, where Alph, the sacred river ran down Boulder, Colorado and the paparazzi were shooting pictures measureless to man and aieeee!”) Certainly P&J could not have slept at night if we hadn’t been told about the Mr. Grimley impostor’s in-flight wining and dining on king prawns and champagne while watching The Last Samurai.

Of course, this is if we aren’t on the edge of our seats waiting for Katie Couric to debut reading a TelePrompTer on CBS’s nightly news and doing a Sharon Stone flash in a miniskirt to draw in viewers with the IQ of a bag of Cheetos. This intellectual challenge to her competitors will doubtless have NBC’s talking hairdo Brian Williams wearing out yet another mirror while working on his posing for the camera, and ABC’s Charles Gibson wondering just how much of a tan to have spray-painted on his face.

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