I think it’s how people remember you when you are no longer there that is the measure of a person and their life. The talk around the teacups after the funeral can be very revealing, even moreso the things that are left unsaid.
I listened on the radio to the tributes to Terry Wogan last week. It seems that he was universally loved by just about everyone who had anything to do with him. It’s hard to believe that he was as nice as people say he was, but although it is hard to believe I for one believe it.
You just had to listen to the man’s radio show to know that here was a truly good humoured, kind, and pleasant natured person. Oh, you could hear the devil in him sometimes but it wasn’t a malevolent devil, it was more a mischievous imp. His voice oozed sincerity, his eyes were always twinkling and you knew that he was usually smiling even though you couldn’t see him on the radio. I can even forgive him The Floral Dance these days, seeing it for what it is, just a bit of fun and not a serious attempt at pop stardom. It makes me smile anyway.
Sir Terry Wogan should be made a saint. No I’m serious. He seems to have bought more joy and peace to so many people just by talking happy nonsense in the mornings. He even made me laugh out loud and if that isn’t a miracle then I don’t know what is - and then of course there was his charity work. I’m sure that Terry had his moments. He must have got angry occasionally, had a few dark thoughts, maybe even got a bit down sometimes, but if he did he didn’t let it show and I certainly haven’t read or heard about it. The closest I remember Sir Terry 'having a go' was when he presented Eurovision - he was a genius with the cutting comment.
Odd isn’t it? I never met Terry Wogan, nor did I watch his TV shows and I came to Radio 2 in his second incarnation as the breakfast show presenter, but even so I feel this genuine warmth for him and absolutely know that with his passing that we all lost a special friend. Yes, I know it’s corny, but it’s also true. He did feel like a friend as I drove to Scarborough for yet another pointless meeting. He kept me company and entertained me with his drivel, and what special drivel it was. I never really thought of myself as a TOG, but I guess I was all along.