TODAY   |  August 12, 2010

Cosby finds no humor in death rumors

Legendary comedian Bill Cosby tells TODAY’s Meredith Vieira that made-up rumors about his passing are “doing damage” to people who shouldn’t be hurt.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> back now at 8:40. take a look at this guy, bill cosby , obviously alive despite those rumors. starring in the new website obkb. take a look.

>> obkb.

>> i wanted to meet bill cosby.

>> he's funny.

>> he made fat albert .

>> hey, hey, hey, it's fat albert !

>> the cosby show .

>> i would like to propose a toast to the beautiful lady rudy.

>> and he wrote.

>> like they're old --

>> and they're still --

>> they get to be themselves. without any writers writing lines for them.

>> the problem was, it wasn't my child. these are real kids , and they're different.

>> bill cosby , good morning.

>> good morning.

>> let's get the rumors out of the way about you being demise -- about your demise. what's behind this in the first place? four tweets or online rumors about your death. the latest one, i guess one of the most recent ones in early august. why?

>> i have no idea.

>> no? all teasing aside it's upset your family, right?

>> well, not only the family. but friends this time, for the fourth one, called. so, the part about, well, take the high, whatever, road.

>> right.

>> that's over. we just have to tell all fools who think that this is funny, it isn't, because i think you need to realize you're doing some damage to people that you really don't want to hurt, so we're just asking them to think. having said that, those children you just played --

>> yes.

>> i want to tell you a wonderful thing that happened. one of the kids --

>> they're all part of this web series , right?

>> the obkb, and i interview them and try to pull things from them, get them going. so that this is all funny, and fun. and then we do grown-ups. and they're funny, as well. but, a kid came up to me, and i was sitting, sweatshirt on, and he said, you know, and i said well, how are you? he said -- he's about 8. and so i said, everything okay? he said --

>> what's he looking at?

>> yeah. so i said, you seem to be looking for -- he said, i watched "the cosby show " all the time. i said, thank you. but why do you look that way? he said, you look old. because, you know, the show --

>> they tell the truth.

>> but the show, the show and then this kid was confused about the image of what -- and what he expected. you're old. i said, yeah. and then we did the interview, had a ball, and i said, so i'm old, so what do you think? he says, you're cool. yeah.

>> well, this show is reminiscent of "kids say the darnedest thing" back in the late '90s. a lot has happened in our world since then from 9/11 to the wars to this explosion of technology. kids are aware of all that stuff. has it changed kids? i mean, kids now, are they different --

>> sure they are.

>> in what way?

>> here's what isn't and what hasn't changed. you don't raise your kids to think, to have themselves think of themselves as victims. you bring them up to win. and so when you've got a kid with a thing here and the blue light on the face, what you do is you say, look, we have to put this down for a little while. there will be plenty of time for that. this thing is called a book. and we're going to read the book. because i found that children, given an opportunity to be taught correct behavior, good behavior, age and education love reading books. they love it. and there are certain schools that demand, demand that a child 7 years old finish up 40 books in a year. and you should hear how wonderful these kids feel.

>> you love kids. that's what it is. you just love kids.

>> but, i don't love that saying about how honest they are. because they're dishonest people.

>> why? what do you mean? quickly?

>> well, they lie.

>> well, they said you were old. that wasn't a lie, right?

>> no, no. but there's lies about other things.

>> give me one example, real quick.

>> you have a load in your pants? no.

>> that had to be the example you gave me?

>> 18 months old, you start out early, lying.

>> okay.

>> i see the load.

>> i've got nothing in my pants, bill, all right?

>> i don't believe you. ow.

>> oh, sorry.

>> see.

>> good to see you. i've got to run to the bathroom. by the way obkb will be available for download