I once went to the most spectacular Hollywood funeral ever. And the love that poured out was well deserved. We knew her by one name, kind of like Cher or Madonna. Kaye. Do you all know whom I’m talking about? You do if you were lucky enough to grow up in Beverly Hills at that time. It’s Kaye Coleman, beloved Nate n’ Al’s waitress and star of our collective childhoods.
Although Kaye had her own daughter, she was the unofficial surrogate mother to some of the biggest mothers in Hollywood. And her “sons” looked after her well. I’d run into Kaye at the priciest restaurants, dining with her posse of waitress friends, the tab picked up by Lew Wasserman or Bernie Brillstein. Those two moguls would also send her on European vacations and ocean cruises. At times, Kaye lived a fancier life than many of her Beverly Hills customers.
Larry King was the emcee of Kaye’s funeral, the only funeral I can think of that had one. His two Nate n’ Al’s buddies, the ones he eats with everyday, Sid and Bob, gave their own hilarious eulogies. So funny, that I overheard Suzanne Pleshette — with that happy newlywed look on her face after her surprise marriage to Tom Poston — leaving the funeral saying, “Who knew? Guess we have to get those two to speak at my funeral.” Sadly, that day would come too soon (not fair). (more…)