Joel Siegel, 1943 - 2007.
Although I didn't approve of the way "Good Morning America" movie reviewer Joel Siegel reportedly walked out of a screening of Kevin Smith's "Clerks II" last summer (announcing: "Time to go! First movie I've walked out of in 30 [effin'] years!"), I realize now that Siegel -- who was diagnosed with colon cancer in 1997 -- was speaking as a man for whom life was, indeed, too short and too precious to waste on cruddy movies. (Even though we may not share the same definition of "cruddy.") Mainly, I just liked that he cared enough to say "NO!" Roger Ebert shares some thoughts on Siegel, who died Friday at age 63:
The rest of Ebert's piece is at RogerEbert.com, along with some of Siegel's own advice for cancer patients.
His cancer spread, then went into remissions, and his friends received regular medical updates. There were four kinds of e-mails from Joel: (1) Good news; (2) Bad news; (3) Encouragement involving your own problems, and (4) Jokes. Mostly we got jokes. If all else had failed, Joel could have been a stand-up comic; in early days, he was a joke writer for Robert Kennedy. On the other hand, he ran a voter registration program for Martin Luther King, Jr., in Macon, Georgia.