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Former KARE anchor Paul Magers announces retirement

Blast from the past: Jerry Seinfeld and Paul Magers in 1992 (KARE)

Paul Magers, the longtime KARE anchor who went on to make his mark in Los Angeles, has announced his retirement.

“By retiring now while I’m relatively young and healthy, I look forward to doing all the things with family and friends that are hard to schedule when you have a full-time job that includes odd hours,” Magers said in a statement. “I definitely won’t miss putting on a suit, tie and make-up, except on Halloween. And I am excited to now have the time to pursue my longtime passion, amateur puppeteering.”

It's that sarcastic wit that helped make Magers a favorite during a 20-year stretch at KARE. He had started his career at KSTP and attended Hamline University School of Law.

Magers, 63, left to anchor the late-night news at the CBS affiliate in LA 13 years ago and watched the ratings increase considerably during his tenure.

“Paul Magers is a special individual, not only as a news anchor, but also as a friend and colleague to everyone who has had the pleasure of knowing him,” said Steve Mauldin, President & General Manager, CBS2 and sister station KCAL 9, according to Deadline Hollywood. “He’s been a bright light in our newsroom as a rock-solid journalist and, when appropriate, someone who could deliver a well-timed joke. While we wish he were staying with us, we respect the decision he has made and look forward to giving him the warm sendoff he deserves.”

In a video tribute (posted above), Magers said he has been off in recent weeks to be treated for alcoholism.

Dakota Jazz Club French fry halts, nearly sabotages Loudon Wainwright III show



Loudon Wainwright III has dedicated much of his five-decade career singing about mortality, but during his Wednesday night show at the Dakota Jazz Club, his obsession teetered on overkill.

He leaned heavily on numbers about facing death, starting with "Double Lifetime," "Missing You" and "Heaven." He recited, from memory, three of his late father's Life magazine columns, including one about having to put down the family dog. He covered songs by Mose Allison and Merle Haggard, who both passed away last year. He nicknamed the venue's upper tier the "John Wilkes Booth Memorial Balcony."

And then there was the literal showstopper.

Before performing one of dad's writings, Wainwright asked to sample a French fry from a fan near the front row.

"Salty," he said as he prepared to launch into the reading. Almost immediately, he suffered a coughing fit. Then his voice went hoarse. For a long minute, it looked like Wainwright might not be able to go on.

After a few gulps of water, the 70-year-old artist was able to continue, even though his voice never fully recovered.

"I can see it in Rolling Stone magazine now," said Wainwright before launching into "Another Song in C," a piece about the great unknown. "Folk legend dies in Minneapolis jazz club, result of eating a French fry."

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