Sunday, January 22, 2023

The Betty White Award for 2022

In Dec 2021 I noted in this post, which was my 1000th post ever (according to Ken Regan, see here) that Betty White had the misfortune of dying on Dec 31, 2021, so AFTER the People we said goodbye to in 2021 articles had already appeared. 

That might not be quite right since when she died it was Jan 1 SOMEWHERE in the world. I learned a new phrase- AWE- AnyWhere on Earth.  But no, she was not mentioned in the People we said goodbye to in 2022 articles.

The Betty White award goes to a celebrity that had the same fate- dying too late in the year to be mentioned in those articles. I had not thought of what criteria I would use if there is more than one option, and indeed, this year there are three candidates that I know of. 

Pele was the greatest soccer player of all time.  Died Dec 29, 2022, at the age of 82. 

Barbara Walters was a famous broadcast journalist. Died Dec 30, 2022, at the age of 93.

Pope Emeritus Benedict  was a prior Pope (obviously). Died Dec 31, 2022 at the age of 95. He died at 9:34AM Vatican Time. I do not think he died on Jan 1, 2023 AWE though that would not disqualify him since he surely will not be in the 2023 People we say goodbye to in 2022 articles.

So which one should get the award?

The term famous means famous when they died. They were all much more famous some years ago than they are now. I am using famous when they died as a criteria. 

a) I am not sure who is more famous internationally- Pele or Pope Emeritus Benedict. Walters is not famous internationally. 

b) Walters is more famous in America. I think Benedict is second, though its hard to tell.  Frankly none of the three are that famous in America. Walters was at one time. Fame is fleeting!

c) Benedict died older and later in the year.

d) Of the three, one was prominent in one of worlds largest religions. The others were a broadcast journalist and a former Pope. 

Rather than try to find a well defined criteria, I will give it the Betty White award to all three of them.

ADDED LATER: Lance has tweeted a poll so you can vote on who you think should have won the ward. The poll has you vote for one of the three, so you can't vote for two of the three, or (as I would have done) vote for all three. 

Note that  Martin Davis avoided being considered for the award since he died on Jan 1, 2023. 


  1. Too late not to late

    1. Thanks, fixed. I also added that Lance tweeted a poll so you can vote on which of them should win the Betty White Award.

  2. All three were famous enough to get an item in the evening news and at least one full page in my newspaper when they died. And I live in the Netherlands.

  3. I am not surprised Pele and Pope Emeritus Benedict were famous in the Netherlands. I am surprised Barbara Walters was. Am I missing something?

  4. I'm sorry, this is quite silly. Why not wait till Jan 1st to publish listicles about the year?

    1. Absolutely agree- in fact that was the main point of my post last year on Betty White and on other posts on this topic. I also want Lance to NOT post our End-of-year post on Dec 23 just in case someone proves P NE NP between Dec 23 and Jan 1.

    2. No big complexity result ever shows up between Christmas and New Years: