Harry Belafonte: I Was Meditating, Not Sleeping, On Live Television

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Jessica Rinaldi / Reuters

There are too many puns and too little time for a story like this.

Harry Belafonte made an unwitting plug for the peacefulness of meditation instead of a promotion for his new memoir My Song.

The 84-year-old crooner of “Day-O” (and consequently, “Beetlejuice“) fame appeared to be snoozing during what was supposed to be a live interview with a Bakersfield, Calif. television station.

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When the local news anchor greeted Belafonte via satellite, she found the legendary singer sitting with his eyes closed, unresponsive to her shrill order to “Wake up!”

According to our sister publication Entertainment Weekly, Belafonte’s rep says he was meditating and couldn’t hear the anchor because of a technical glitch in his earpiece.

“After weeks of literally hundreds of interviews promoting his HBO documentary [Sing Your Song], memoir and CD, Mr. Belafonte had an early morning satellite TV tour this past Friday,” his rep Ken Sunshine told People (our other sister mag) in a statement. “His earpiece wasn’t working, so he decided to take the time to mediate before the rest of his Day-O.”

He added: “Mr. Belafonte is 84 years young, but sharper and more awake than most who have been interviewing him. Maybe the world would be a better place if more people took a moment to meditate.”

The daylight had come and he probably wanted to go home. There, we said it.

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