Live with Michael: A Morning Dose of Cuteness

Several years ago I was at a low point in my life. Laid off, no reason to get dressed in the morning…the days seemed endless and pointless. Then, one day, a new man entered my life. Older, funny, intense, energetic and just all around delightful.  Suddenly my mornings seemed shinier and filled with possibilities.  Yes, he did come with some baggage–someone clearly not worthy of him, but somehow he put up with her and that made his star shine even more brightly in my eyes. Regis Philbin…he was the man. He became my television Dad. From NYC like my father, he yelled just like my dad, obsessed over the Yankees just like him and even followed Big East basketball like him.  Yes, there was Kelly, but that was ok, because Regis knew how to reel her in. Then, just like that it ended. I found a job and Regis and Kelly were no more. I told people the hardest thing about going back to work and, believe me, I was glad to be employed, was leaving Regis behind.Regis Philbin

Fast-forward to present day. Regis is gone. My beloved Regis retired. Oh, I read about the auditions to become the new co-host…the person to take Regis’ seat…never his place. I had seen some of these Regis wannabe’s fill in for him when he was on vacation: Jeff Probst– cute dimples, but too nice and no NYC vibe; Howie Mandel–too germaphobic; Anderson Cooper–too much like Kelly and Seth Meyers–really? When I heard that former NY Giant Michael Strahan won the job, I was very puzzled.  Him? I’d seen him on the “FOX NFL Sunday” and while he was pleasant enough in the company of  Terry, Howie and Jimmy, would I want to see him every morning?

Well, I got my answer soon enough. Once again on the hunt for employment, I turned on “Kelly without Regis” (as I began calling it) and WOW!!! There was Michael in all his NY Giants’ “fineness” and he was/is fabulous. Game for anything, utterly charming and able to speak on a variety of topics…just what you want from a morning host. And did I mention that he’s just so adorably cute? Plus…and this is major…Kelly is actually reined in. Oh, she still tries to make it all about her, but she seems to respect Michael and his opinion, so she doesn’t walk all over him. Therefore, as a big man he isn’t put in the awkward position of trying to get her to be quiet. Nothing seems to intimidate him. His brief stint as a character in “Elf” for the show was priceless and his rapport with guests is terrific, too (Google the episode with Dustin Hoffman). And did I mention that he’s cute?Michael Strahan

Michael Strahan will never be Regis, but he’s not trying to be. He’s just plain, adorable, cute,  big brother Michael and that’s good enough. Leaving Michael behind for gainful employment will be difficult and I never thought I’d be saying those words.

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