5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up

No matter how famous or talented a celebrity is, at some point the public moves on to a new attractive moving toy. Seriously, when was the last time you saw a movie with Julia Roberts? Do you have any idea what Paris Hilton has been up to for the past five years? But once we stop paying attention, their lives still go on. Some of them take their money and have a boring retirement with little action. And then there are these guys -- the ones whose lives turned into pure insanity when we all stopped looking.

Advertisement

5
Surf Rock Legend Dick Dale Is Almost 80 And Still Touring ... To Pay His Medical Bills

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

In 1962, legendary surf rock guitarist Dick Dale released his biggest hit, "Misirlou." You probably know it as the song Tarantino used in the opening titles of Pulp Fiction:

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

At nearly 80 years old, Dale is still touring, still playing "Misirlou" as quickly as ever. He says if he stops touring, he'll die. And that's not the hyperbolic refusal of a star to let old age keep him from rocking. You see, Dale is suffering from a variety of ailments, and they're all battling to be the one that kills him first. He needs the money earned from touring to help pay his medical bills. These are the health problems he's had to deal with:

Renal failure
Rectal cancer
Diabetes
Rectal cancer, again
Blinding pain caused by severe spinal damage
Having part of his stomach and intestines removed because of the rectal cancer

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Hearing of his financial plight, you'd think he's scrambling for some late-in-life cash to make up for the time he bought Bengal tigers for everyone in his entourage. Not so. Dale wears a colostomy bag beneath his clothes. His doctors recommend that he clean and redress his entry hole once a week, to which Dale calls bullshit. Following their directions made him unnecessarily suffer from the kind of infections that tend to occur when you poop from a hole in your stomach. So he'd rather re-patch twice a day and stay infection-free, but his insurance refuses to cover those costs. The only surefire way to get the out-of-pocket $3,000 a month he needs to cover the cost of the additional medical supplies is to tour.

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Updina2001/iStock/Getty Images
IS THIS ROCK 'N' ROLL ENOUGH FOR YOU VULTURES?!

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

But touring has turned out to be a double-edged sword, kind of like the metaphorical one Dale uses to describe the pain in his spine every time he stands up. It pays the bills, sure, but he's in agony the whole time he's on stage. And there's always the chance that his medical equipment will fail him during a show. For example, just before taking the stage at a show in Las Vegas, his colostomy bag tore and liquid shit ran down his legs. His wife quickly washed all his clothes in a backstage sink. He put the clothes back on and proceeded to give the 90-minute performance fans had paid to see. Though you can't really put a price on getting to watch a sopping wet old man who smells vaguely like diarrhea play that song The Black Eyed Peas sampled for "Pump It."

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Facing his own mortality every day for decades has given Dick Dale time to think about the perfect way to go: "On stage in an explosion of body parts." There is no more appropriate death for a guy who's barely being held together than to explode like a crash-test dummy toy while playing a guitar really fast.

4
One Of The Greatest Pitchers Of All Time Became A Career Criminal In Retirement

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

As a Major League pitcher, Denny McLain won the American League Cy Young Award twice. He was 1968's AL MVP. He won 30 games that season. That hadn't been done since the 1930s, and no pitcher since has won more than 25 games in a season. He was also named the Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year, an honor he shares with every sports legend you can imagine.

Denny was also kind of dumb. During the peak of his baseball career, he was named the starting pitcher for the 1969 All-Star Game in Washington, D.C., but he didn't show up to the game until more than halfway through because he was at a routine dentist appointment back in Detroit that he refused to reschedule.

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up
A smile worth sabotaging a promising baseball career over.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

When he retired, he used that same logic and applied it to business. He began his retirement by hustling golfers out of tons of cash. Denny was a pilot, too, and even owned his own small airline -- which he used to fly a wanted felon out of the U.S. for $160,000. He later became close friends and business partners with John Gotti Jr., the famous mobster. That friendship resulted in cocaine trafficking, embezzlement, and racketeering charges, and a 12-year prison sentence.

It seemed like Denny had finally hit rock bottom. He was released after five years and cleaned up his life. He even had his own sports radio show in Detroit for a while. It took a prison stint to break him, but he did it. He had gone clean. And then he went right back to prison for 6 years after he raided $2.5 million from the pension fund of a 100-year-old meat-packing company he helped run into the ground. With a little bit more effort, one day Denny's criminal career will be just as awe-inspiring as his baseball career.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

3
Gary Glitter Has Put A Lot Of Effort Into Being A Pedophile

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up

There was a time when nearly every goal, touchdown, or run scored by a professional sports team playing at home was followed immediately by Gary Glitter's lyrically idiotic mega hit "Rock And Roll (Parts 1 And 2)."

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

With three words and a good guitar riff, Gary Glitter rocketed to stardom and made a ton of money, which he wisely invested in hairspray and shiny metal studs. His career looked good on the surface, but all that Gary Glittered was not Gary Gold.

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up
"That joke up there? That joke is excellent."

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

He was arrested in 1997 after he took his laptop to be repaired and -- D'OH! -- he forgot to delete his vast collection of child porn. The offense got him a measly four-month prison sentence. But what must have really stung was when The Spice Girls cut his cameo from their movie Spice Word.

The child porn was bad enough, but the public opinion of his fellow Britons became unbearable after he was accused of having had sex with a teenage girl. So he hopped on his yacht and set sail on a globetrotting trip of pedophilia. He spent time in Cambodia, at least until they expelled him from the country, calling him "a threat to the security ... and to the national image of Cambodia." For perspective, for a while Cambodia was mostly known for their roving gangs of death squads.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

He fled to Vietnam, where he had sex with two underage girls and was arrested as he was trying to flee for Thailand. The case was eventually dropped due to a lack of evidence.

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made UpPaula Bronstein/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Gary Glitter on trial in 2006 looking like if Colonel Sanders was a kung-fu master.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

A year after that, he was tried on charges of having sex with another two underage Vietnamese girls. He was found guilty within 24 hours and was sentenced to three years in prison and would be deported from the country upon release.

Then a 2012 documentary alleged that Glitter had sex with a 14-year-old girl in the dressing room of an English TV presenter, who also had a long, secret history of pedophilia. He was subsequently tried (again!) and sentenced to 16 years in prison.

This entry was a real bummer. So let's lighten the mood by moving on to a story about a beloved American icon possibly being held hostage!

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

2
Richard Simmons Could Be A Prisoner In His Own Home Right Now

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up

Richard Simmons is an American pop culture icon. His energy and enthusiasm for fitness -- which borders on insanity -- has changed millions of lives. In the process, he made a ton of money, achieved massive fame, and made his name synonymous with healthy living.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

So, of course, the people closest to him have conspired to keep him locked in his home for the remainder of his life, perhaps in the hope of walking away with his fortune when he dies. At least that's what the people who used to be a part of his life think is going on since Simmons mysteriously and suddenly secluded himself in his Beverly Hills mansion sometime in 2014.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

No one outside of the mansion knows what, exactly, the fuck is going on. The people in the house aren't talking, and the people outside who used to be Simmons' close friends, trusted co-workers, and business partners get shooed away like mangy cats. Every call to the house or knock on his door is met with a stern demand to leave and never return: Mister Simmons is trying on tiny shorts that barely conceal his balls, and he cannot be disturbed!

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up
"OH MY GOD HIS SHORTS HAVE FAILED HIS SHORTS HAVE FAILED."

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

In one weird instance, Simmons invited close friend and former assistant Mauro Oliveira to his house. When Mauro got there, Simmons told him they couldn't see each other ever again. He didn't give a reason. Then Simmons' long-time live-in housekeeper, Teresa, started yelling, "Get out! Get out!" from within the house.

That was in April 2014. Mauro hasn't seen Simmons since. After the New York Daily News ran an expose about his seclusion, Simmons gave a call-in interview to The Today Show to quell the public's fears about his safety. He said he isn't being held captive, he's fine, and he simply doesn't want to be in the public eye anymore. Exactly what someone being held captive would be forced to say?!

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

No one knows what's really going on, but Mauro has a theory of his own: "I think 'tormented' is the best word to describe his mental state. I think it was [caused by] black magic, witchcraft."

You're not helping.

1
Randy Quaid Is A Paranoid Serial Squatter Perpetually On The Run From The Feds

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made UpScott Halleran/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Randy Quaid has slowly become the crazy person he always played in movies. His downward spiral began in September 2009, when he and his wife refused to pay the $10,000 bill they racked up while staying in a fancy California hotel. In spite of making themselves look like guilty douchebags by fleeing to Texas and refusing to show up to court several times, the case was thrown out due to lack of evidence.

Now, this was a pivotal moment. Randy and Evi Quaid had dodged a bullet. This infraction could still have been written off as a small blip in an otherwise decent life. All they had to do was stop living in places without paying. That should be easy, right?

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up20th Century Fox
"I'm baaaaaaaack ... in your home, illegally."

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Apparently not. Almost exactly a year later, the Quaids were slapped with more charges for illegally living in the guest house of the home they used to own. I should mention that the Quaids were paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in bail and legal fees over all this. They could have used that money to buy a real home, but no. Instead, they were asshole millionaires who squatted for no fucking reason whatsoever.

A few months after that, their story took a huge leap into full-blown lunacy. They fled to Vancouver to become Canadian citizens. Why? Because of the Star Whackers, of course! You know the Star Whackers, don't you? They're the batshit insane secret organization the Quaids claim are responsible for the deaths of Heath Ledger and David Carradine, among countless other Hollywood stars. If the Quaids didn't flee to Vancouver, they'd end up dead just like them!

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

The Quaids even made a low-budget Star Whackers movie, because when you're hiding from a powerful secret society of assassins, the most logical thing to do is make a movie about them and then walk the red carpet at its premiere at a film festival. In case you were considering checking it out, here's the film's Rotten Tomatoes score:

 5 Where Are They Now's You Won't Believe Aren't Made Up

Luis diarrhea-ed all over himself while writing this. Send him your pity on Twitter, Tumblr, and on Facebook.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Cracked is up for TWO Webby Awards, for Best Humor Site and Best Video Entertainment! While we're busy patting ourselves on the back, you can pat too by voting here and here.

See why Wikipedia might not be a reliable place to learn about celebrities in 5 Celebrity Wikipedia Entries They Clearly Wrote Themselves, and find out what happened to NFL player Chris Kluwe in 4 Celebrities Who Got Blacklisted For Doing The Right Thing.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel to see if you can spot Ron Jeremy in 19 WTF Celebrity Cameos By Celebrities You Think You'd Recognize, and watch other videos you won't see on the site!

Also follow us on Facebook, because we hear Patton Oswalt follows us, and that's kind of cool, right? Like, he's had a good career. It's worth trying to find him in the comments, probably.

To turn on reply notifications, click here

396 Comments

Load Comments

More Blogs

What Made These 4 Famous Comedians Walk Away From Comedy?

Just what is it that makes funny people stop being funny for a living?

82

5 Sex Scandals From Hollywood's Golden Age

Sex scandals were rampant in the supposed Golden Age ... they were just easier to cover up.

68

5 Famous Things That Were Named After Awful People

Being a household name doesn't exactly make someone a role model.

105

5 Surreal Coincidences In Recent News Stories

Who writes this stuff?

60

5 Trends For Women People Get Irrationally Angry About

Trends among women trigger a level of contempt that's way beyond what is deserved.

250

5 Wasteful Things Employers Do (Instead Of Paying Us More)

Forget 'morale-boosters,' we'd rather have the money.

142