If you grew up anytime between the early 70′s and and the late 90′s, you know who Bob Barker is. The Price is Right together with Bob Barker was a firm fixture of American television for 35 years. While TPIS continues on without Bob, it just doesn’t seem to hold the same endearment as it once did with Bob at the mic. Bob Barker’s memoir, Priceless Memories, was a wonderful recollection of not just Bob’s time on TPIS, but also of his entire life leading up to and beyond his most famous hosting gig. Watching The Price is Right was always one of the silver lining of being sick and having to stay home from work or school. Now, of course with DVRs and Tivo, no one has to watch shows when the actually air. Before the advent of such devices however, it was always a treat to lay on the couch and play along with Bob. He always knew how to cheer me up.
One thing I really enjoyed about his book was that, throughout reading it, I was always left with a smile. Bob’s humorous stories (sometimes at his own expense) and behind-the-scenes view of the game show industry are entertaining and delightful. Also, the story of Bob and his wife, Dorothy Jo, while sad as to her early passing, never felt as though it was overly melodramatic. In fact at times, the way Bob spoke about her, it seemed as though she was still here with him.
I, like Bob, am a huge animal lover. I was a little worried when I first picked this book up that it might turn into a preachy, animal activism diatribe, but Bob balances his enthusiasm for his work with animals with some truly interesting stories about how his feelings towards them influenced his career and life in general. He also recounts some wonderful pets he had in his life and gives humorous examples of their unique personalities. His work on their behalf is inspiring. He manages to be very passionate about his cause, without crossing the line into wacky extremism.
This was a great read and I would encourage any fan of The Price is Right, Bob Barker, or animals in general to pick it up. It will leave you in good spirits and show an example of how life is not over when one retires, it just enters a new chapter.