Joe Franklin, one of the great New York personalities and an indefatigable interviewer, has passed at age 88. Fare thee well to a hard-working New York institution who, according to a hilarious N.Y. times obit, “presided over one of the most compellingly low-rent television programs in history, one that even [Franklin] acknowledged was an oddly long-running parade of has-beens and yet-to-bes interrupted from time to time by surprisingly famous guests.” In 1993 Franklin reportedly claimed that he had interviewed than 300,000 guests during his show’s 40 year run. Yours truly sat on Joe’s couch in late ’79 or early ’80. I was plugging Sid Geffen‘s Thousand Eyes Cinema Guide, which I was the managing editor of. I remember that Joe suddenly asked me during our discussion what I thought of Akim Tamiroff. I was stunned. What the hell was I supposed to say? My response: “Uhhm…grizzled, unshaven Turkish guy, mannered, always with the bottle…Touch of Evil, Ocean’s Eleven…I don’t know, he’s okay.”