TVNewser FishbowlDC AgencySpy TVSpy LostRemote PRNewser SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Infomercial Pitchman Billy Mays Dies

The celebrities — and quasi-celebrities — have been dropping like flies this week. So yesterday, when news of Oxiclean hawker Billy Mays‘ death interrupted the marathon of Michael Jackson video retrospectives we have been watching for days, we numbly raised a remote control in honor of the fallen salesman.

Mays, whose wife found him dead Sunday morning, had just appeared on “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien” last week to promote his reality show “Pitchmen,” which debuted on the Discovery Channel a couple months ago.

Mays was 50, just like MJ. He was also on board a US Airways flight that made an emergency landing in Tampa on Saturday after its front tires blew out. Just freaky coincidences or proof that the apocalypse is upon us?

Mediabistro Course

Travel Writing

Travel WritingStarting September 23, learn how to turn your travel stories into published essays and articles! Taught by a former Vanity Fair staff writer, James Sturz will teach you how to report, interview, and find sources, discover story ideas and pitch them successfully, and understand what travel editors look for in a story. Register now!