After Katie Couric’s husband died of colon cancer in 1998, the famous news anchor has wined and dined with some of the most interesting — and unexpected! — of celebrities.
“I think women need to be much more open-minded,” Couric told Howard Stern on his SirusXM show of her dates with Bob Saget and Jeff Probst.
Couric’s romances with both Saget and Probst were both limited to singular dates. She said her date with the potty-mouthed Full House star was fun, but he never called for back.
“I don’t think I did it for him,” she admitted.
Her relationship with Survivor‘s Probst was also as shortlived as his tenure as a talk show host.
“I think he had puka shells on,” Couric reminisced. “That was kind of a weird thing.”
Stern expressed his surprised that neither man called Couric for a second date. However, she reassured him that she didn’t lose any sleep over unrequited love.
“I can’t say that I was devastated that neither called me back,” she said. “I thought they were both nice guys… I don’t think there was real magic there with either, but I enjoyed spending time with them.”
Although Couric never wonders about “what ifs” with Saget and Probst, she does wish she’d taken up Michael Jackson on his dinner request.
That whole interaction occurred in the early 2000s, when she was approached by Michael Jackson’s spiritual advisor, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, about meeting the King of Pop for a dinner date. Unfortunately, Couric had a boyfriend at the time.
“He said, ‘Oh, that’s a shame. Michael said to me ‘That’s the kind of girl I would like to go out with,” Couric recalled. “I said, ‘Rabbi Shmuley, that’s very flattering but I am seeing someone… Will you tell him how flattered I am and what a nice compliment that is?'”
Couric, who has since broken up with that boyfriend, believes it was a mistake to turn down the late Jackson.
“I do regret not having dinner with him. That would have been insane — breaking bread with Michael Jackson!”
One relationship she does not bemoan keeping short was with Larry King.
“He lunged,” Couric said of her time in King’s apartment after their one and only date. Still, they remain friends and have been able to laugh about it in the years since.
Couric, who has two teenage daughters with her late husband, is now in a relationship with New York financier John Molner (pictured at top). She said the way her love life has unfolded since her husband’s death wasn’t what she expected, but it has been a valuable learning experience.
“When you get to my age, everyone is a little bit wounded. So I think it’s important to handle people with care – not to think, ‘Oh, what a terrible date,’ but just, ‘This person isn’t for me.’ Everyone has a lot of baggage. It’s just, can you fit it into the overhead bin?”