Friday, May 2, 2008

Irony: an outcome of events contrary to what was, or might have been, expected

The last person Jerome Irving Rodale saw alive

From Wikipedia:

Jerome Irving Rodale (surname accented on second syllable) (August 16, 1898June 8, 1971), was a playwright, editor, author and publisher.

He was one of the first advocates of a return to sustainable agriculture and organic farming in the United States. He founded a publishing empire, founded several magazines, and published many books, his own and those of others, on health. He also published works, including The Synonym Finder, on a wide variety of other topics. Rodale popularized the term "organic" to mean grown without pesticides.

Rodale died of a heart attack at the age of 72 while participating as a guest on The Dick Cavett Show. He was still on stage, having finished his interview and was seated next to the active interviewee, New York Post columnist Pete Hamill. According to Cavett, Hamill noticed something was wrong with Rodale, leaned over to Cavett and said, "This looks bad." According to others, Cavett asked, "Are we boring you, Mr. Rodale?", which Cavett "emphatically" doesn't recall. The episode was never broadcast, although Cavett has described the story in public appearances and on his blog.

Ironically, Rodale had bragged during his just-completed interview on the show that "I’m in such good health that I fell down a long flight of stairs yesterday and I laughed all the way", "I’ve decided to live to be a hundred", as well as the inevitable "I never felt better in my life!" He had also previously bragged that "I'm going to live to be 100, unless I'm run down by some sugar-crazed taxi driver."

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