Cancer apparently hasn’t slowed Don Imus down, or made him more soft-hearted.
The cantankerous talk show host gave local radio yakker Jay Severin the smack down this morning during his annual St. Patty’s Day “Kiss Me, I’m Imus” show, broadcast on WTKK from the Wilbur Theatre. Apparently, the two have been at odds since Severin – an Imus regular – stopped appearing on his show, calling Imus rude and insulting. But this morning, Severin approached Imus on stage during a commercial break, according to a source who saw the exchange go down. “He whispered something to him, and I don’t know what he said, but he was off the stage pretty quickly,” the source said. “He was allowed to stay in the theatre, but he wasn’t allowed on the program.”
Imus, meanwhile, launched into a tirade about Severin, who reportedly stood backstage, looking mortified. “My policy, when people (mess with) me, is to never talk to them again,” ranted Imus, who complained that Severin not only boycotted his show, but then blabbed to reporters about it. “Don’t run your fat mouth and (mess with) me and think I’m going to forget about it,” he said. (We’re curious about Severin’s side, but haven’t yet heard back from the local host, or his WTKK program director, Grace Blazer.)
Sen. John Kerry, presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, crass comic Rob Bartlett, broadcaster Mike Barnicle, and WTKK host Michael Graham were allowed to join Imus during his rather repetitive four-hour gab fest. (Now there’s a mixed crowd.)
Imus repeatedly brought up his recently announced prostate cancer diagnosis during the program, joking he now has more in common with the kids he helps at his charity camp for kids with cancer. He also tried to solicit gifts and favors from his guests (in case he dies) and worried aloud about his stressful co-workers and the future of his sex life.
His sign-off? “See you next year. If, of course, I’m still alive.”
(Above: Imus and Severin during their mysterious conversation. It doesn't look pretty. Photos by George Rizer/Globe staff.)
And...he's outta there.
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