Saturday, January 20, 2007

You Don't Need A Weatherman To Know Which Way Your Mind Blows

Percy Saltzman was more than just a mild-mannered, bow-tied TV weatherman. Much, much, more:

Percy Saltzman, the much-loved TV weatherman, had a dark side. He was a rowdy blogger.

His Internet journal — — was little known until after his death Monday at the age of 91, at which point, as word got around, the number of hits on the site mushroomed to thousands daily from a handful.

His two sons, Paul and Earl, who acquired the intellectual copyright to the material after their father died, almost immediately had the more salacious bits removed, including Mr. Saltzman's rather detailed description of his interest in bare female bodies and his sexual difficulties with their mother, Mr. Saltzman's late first wife.

Also removed was his raging criticism of granddaughter Devyani Saltzman's 2005 book, Shooting Water: A Memoir Of Second Chances, Family, And Filmmaking, which he characterized as "riddled with gross distortions," "a farrago of misinformation," gratuitous, snide, and presumptuous rot that left his reputation "forever splattered" with "mud."


Interestingly, what is left on the site is Mr. Saltzman's disparaging comments about Toronto civil rights lawyer Clayton Ruby, a friend of Paul's.

Mr. Saltzman wrote in his blog that "Ruby is a booby" and that the lawyer treated him for years as a "non-existent, non-human, non-presence," repeatedly refusing to shake his hand and cutting him dead whenever the two men were introduced.

Perhaps Saltzman was just another crotchety old fogey raging against the dying of the night. Perhaps his inhibitions were starting to go under the first strains of dementia. Or perhaps he was just a real human character underneath the public persona of the corny weatherman.

PS: What was in the stuff his sons took down?

Source: Globe and Mail

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