Episode 14: Vanna Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platnium

In the fourteenth episode of The Latest, we discuss sick celebs. Registered nurse Brooke Shaw joins the program for the O.J. Simpson Twitter Update.

The Latest with Greg Ott
The Latest with Greg Ott
Episode 14: Vanna Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platnium


Pat Sajak is in a Los Angeles hospital tonight after undergoing emergency surgery yesterday.

He’s been hosting “Wheel of Fortune” for 37 years.

Sajak reportedly resting comfortably and looking forward to getting back.

Those voices are discussing the medical condition of Pat Sajak, the long-running “Wheel of Fortune” host who had an obstruction inside his long-running intestine. 

He’s the latest iconic game show personality to have a serious medical scare, following Alex Trebek’s pancreatic cancer diagnosis, and the emu oil that turned Chuck Woolery’s arthritis into antisemitism. 

Being concerned with celebrity mortality is nothing new; in fact, I think it started with the New Testament. Like Christ our King, earlier this week Celine Dion died and was quickly brought back to life, according to a viral internet hoax that failed to take into account that her heart will go on.

And article from August in This Week pointed out that many of today’s well-known rockstars are starting to take a closer look at the rider for their green room in the sky — Mick Jagger is 76, Paul McCartney is 77. Even Jimmy Buffet is 72. I’ve got a feeling that cheeseburger he’s approaching is flame broiled. 

I’m not telling you all this to be morbid or mean or dismissive for the sake of being dismissive. It’s okay to like celebrities and be invested in their well being. This week, Miley Cyrus is recovering from surgery on her vocal cords. Apparently when she went in for a checkup, doctors were alarmed to find out they produce some sort of sound.

But I do have trouble listening to people concern themselves about the health and vitality of people they’ve never met only when they’re public figures.

When Kevin Hart had a major car accident in September, people wondered whether or not he was going to be okay, not whether or not he had insurance. 

This country’s inefficient medical system costs more and covers less, and unless you’ve hit the lottery — or solved the puzzle using R-S-T-L-N-E — it’s a pretty brutal reality.

It’s why more and more hospitals nationwide are turning into collection agencies, garnishing salaries from deadbeats who can’t cough it up for the repair of their collapsed lung. 

If Jay Leno wrecks his Harley tomorrow and needs serious care, people are going to say “poor Jay Leno.” But he’s Jay Leno — he’s not poor. He’s not going to have to set up a GoFundMe where he reads personalized headlines to early-bird sponsors. 

I don’t resent any of these celebrities’ successes, and as long as they have nothing to do with “Margaritaville,” I hope they continue to lead long and productive lives. But in a country with 300 million people and let’s say, 10,000 celebrities, I hope the remaining 299 million, 290 thousand people decide they want to be able to afford a better healthcare system without having to buy an extra vowel.