Monday, July 30, 2007
Marvin Zindler Has Left The Building
The Wigged-Out Wonder of Houston Signs Off For The Last Time -- Who's Gonna Find the Slime in the Ice Machine Now?
One of the few times I got to see Marvin Zindler was when he appeared on a network morning show, or an occasional appearance with Leno.
But the fact that I saw him rarely yet still had that shocking white wig or his indelible sign-off seared into my brain says a lot.
Which is why his passing yesterday at age 85 is an especially big deal in Houston, where he was a star attraction at KTRK, the ABC affiliate, for 34 years.
"Maaarvin Zindler, Eyewitness News" is how he'd finish one of his consumer reports that made him a hero to Houston's middle- and working classes. Indeed, he was much more than a self-made caricacture.
The bombast, big wig and brash suits concealed a heart of gold that armed him to fight injustice, roaches in restaurants and Houston's last bordello, a campaign that inspired "The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas."
In other words, a TV icon.
The station's Web site has quite the tribute to Zindler, with choice clips from his checkered career. Kudos to the Houston Chronicle for a great obit, which also includes an ample photo spread and a video tribute from ordinary Houstonians -- the ones Zindler cared about most --saying their goodbyes.