Friday, December 26, 2008

"Santa Baby" singer dies on Christmas.

I realize that Eartha Kitt was much more than a sultry singer who portrayed Catwoman in the campy "Batman" TV series of the 1960s.

But you have to admit that it's significant that the woman, whose biggest hit record was "Santa Baby," should die on Christmas Day - Dec. 25, 2008.

I was disheartened to see that so many newspapers published obits that buried the Christmassy irony toward the end of her obituary. Many didn't connect the dots between the song and the date of death at all.

In some papers, it was left up to the headline writer to put it together.

In his Kitt piece for Obit Magazine, Daniel Patrick Stearns does a nice job of tying together the holiday elements with the Kitt's sexually and politically provocative persona near the top of his story.

He writes:

Sex symbols always confront the world’s morality, but few went to such lengths as Eartha Kitt, who died on Christmas Day from colon cancer at age 81 after some six decades of being a flash point of provocative glamour. Whether asking Santa Claus for a yacht (with an obvious payback in mind) in her hit “Santa Baby” or seductively plying a man young enough to be her grandson with champagne during her nightclub act, Kitt presented herself with a take-it-or-leave-it attitude that defied the judgments of others.


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