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Hello to all of you Afro Stache fans! Welcome to another Fabulous Frog Blog.

To be honest with you, I wasn’t sure I was going to write this one. It may seem like sort of a downer. But this weekend, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper passed away. It has been all over the news, Twitter and Facebook. Many people have expressed their condolences and sadness of his passing. They also reflected on the impact that Mr. Piper had on their lives. And he did on me as well, which I’ll get into later.

Then I got to thinking that we lost many people this year. I mean, there are a whole lot, be it sports, news anchors, celebrity chefs, writers, and actors. I won’t go into each one because this blog entry would go on for pages and pages. Also, I honestly didn’t know all of them nor were impacted in any way. But I would still go back and reflect on those we did lose, just because they did impact others in some great way.

Grace Lee Whitley. She played Yeoman Janice Rand on Star Trek. That’s right, the original series. Now I haven’t seen every single episode of Star Trek, but I have seen quite a few. Let’s face it, we all have. And any time we lose an actor who was in that groundbreaking show, we feel a great loss. And this won’t be the only time I mention Star Trek in this blog post.

Sam Simon. Who is he? Well, he was a co-creator of The Simpsons. Yeah, that show. Another show that I know I haven’t seen every single episode, but many have passed before these bloodshot eyes. We all have memories of this show in its many years it has been on the air, from Bart’s, “Don’t have a cow,” to Homer’s, “Doh!” The Simpsons truly do have a place in our hearts.

Percy Sledge. While he doesn’t fall into the geek category I like to talk about, no one can argue that he indeed had a great hit with “When a Man Loves a Woman.” Come on now, everyone knows this song or has heard it at least once. Percy delivered this song with such heart and soul, you could believe every word he sang. And if you’re one of those people out there who says they don’t like the song, well, you’re just one cold and heartless jerk!

Donna Douglas. Elly May Clampett! A fantastic character in The Beverly Hillbillies. Again, I can’t say as I’ve ever sat at great lengths to watch this show, but I do know that it was a classic. Clearly, everyone knows the show, or has heard of it. I do remember seeing her on television more recently, still sporting the pigtails she was known for on the show. Yep, you know she embraced that character, which is something I can appreciate. When an actor takes a character, makes it their own, and is a part of them. That’s when you know it’s great!

James Best. Who could ever forget Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane? I loved, and still do love, The Dukes of Hazzard. Many Friday nights I was allowed to stay up and watch the Dukes outsmart and outdrive Roscoe and his dog Flash! I know now there’s a whole lot of controversy and hubbub over Nickelodeon not playing The Dukes of Hazzard anymore because of the Confederate flag on top of the General Lee. And I certainly do not intend to debate over the symbolism of the flag here. But all I know is that when I was watching that show, there was never a time I thought there was any racism portrayed in it. Heck, I was a kid and didn’t even know they were moonshiners!

Geoffrey Lewis. If you don’t know who he is, go look him up on IMDB. This list of things he’s done is incredible! Seriously! Go look and see what he’s done and then come back here. You’ll be impressed!

Leonard Nimoy. Do I really need to say he played Spock? What an impact he had on all of us and science fiction and television and movies. One of the things that stands out to me about Leonard Nimoy when I was a kid was watching this television show called Standby: Lights, Camera, Action. It was all about going behind the scenes of the making of movies. It was on Nickelodeon and was narrated by Leonard himself. As a kid, it was fascinating (pun intended) to see all that stuff that goes on behind the camera. I still enjoy watching the making of movies and shows. Now, of course we must at least mention his role in Star Trek. But that’s all I’m going to say about it. We all know what he’s done. You certainly don’t need me to tell you what I think of what he did on that show. But I will say this: I was at the Long Beach Comic Expo back in February. It was on the first day and right after the doors opened, an announcement came over the loudspeakers asking for a moment of silence for Leonard Nimoy. Now, this was a large convention hall. People wanted to get special deals, meet artists, or wander and cosplay and get their pictures taken. But when they asked for that moment of silence, you could hear a pin drop! It was absolutely awe inspiring. I still get the chills when I think about that.

Finally, as I mentioned before, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. Everyone knows him as the wrestler. But he also played George Nada in They Live. What a classic movie. The fight scene between him and Keith David is one for the books. Probably one of the greatest fight scenes in movie history. At least to me. And of course, some great lines in there too. My favorite, “I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass… and I’m all out of bubblegum.”

Now, I know we have lost some greats this year. And I’m not trying to bring anyone down. In fact, I want us to celebrate what these people brought to our geek lives. We can look back and remember what joy they have brought to us in entertaining us as they have. All of these great people have left their marks on my heart. I hope only one day I can leave my geek mark on everyone too!

Until next week, be good humans!

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