Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be former child stars

Leif Garrett, who was famous for about three weeks during the '70s as a Tiger Beat pinup boy, got busted in L.A. for sneaking onto public transportation without purchasing a ticket.

Oh, how the legend has fallen.

Not long ago, I happened to channel-surf upon an episode of the reality show elimiDATE in which Garrett was fixed up with four enthusiastic potential paramours. Wearing a battered cowboy hat and thrift-store duds, Leif looked as though he had just fallen off the wagon on the ride back from rehab and been dragged behind it for several blocks. Garrett is only a month and a half older than I am, but he could easily have scammed a senior discount at Denny's. (But then, you should see that portrait of me that's hiding in the overhead crawlspace.)

Here's a quick test for you trivia buffs: What vehicle brought Leif Garrett to fame back in the day? The original Walking Tall and its sequels, in which tender young Leif played the son of club-toting Southern lawman Buford Pusser (Joe Don Baker).

In an attempt to capitalize on Leif's prepubescent appeal, in 1975 CBS cast him in Three for the Road, a short-lived family drama starring Leif and future tennis has-been and poker commentator Vincent Van Patten as the sons of a journalist (Alex Rocco) who traveled around the country in a Winnebago. When Three for the Road was canned after half a season, 60 Minutes inherited its 7 p.m. Sunday time slot, where it remains 30 years later.

Garrett's post-heartthrob celebrity has mostly derived from occasional run-ins with the law, usually on drug-related offenses. Now he's hopping subway gates to beat the fare.

Too bad, really. I'm sure that somewhere in that subway station were at least a couple of nostalgic fortyish ladies who would gladly have ponied up a few bucks in exchange for a Leif Garrett autograph.

3 insisted on sticking two cents in:

Anonymous Imperpay offered these pearls of wisdom...

Now he's hopping subway gates to beat the fare.
...well, metaphorically, anyway. Our subway has no gates or turnstiles. We are expected to buy our ticket and hold onto it. The sheriffs (or now, more often, "fare inspectors") make random appearances and check everybody's ticket. I'm a regular rider of the Green Line (not the Red Line, where Leif was busted), and I see a deputy or inspector maybe once every twenty or thirty trips.

7:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous offered these pearls of wisdom...

you're so estupid... i'm sure you would have liked to be leif when you were a teenager, and now it's very easy to make fun of a victim of drugs
beware your own children if you happen to have, may be they'd prefer being like leif rather than a resentful nobody like you

5:51 PM  
Blogger SwanShadow offered these pearls of wisdom...

Thanks for dropping by, Leif.

I'm sorry to see that the rehab didn't take.

5:56 PM  

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