PASADENA, Calif. -- I'm going to miss Paula Abdul on "American Idol" next season primarily because she was the one judge who was so easy to make fun of on the Fox hit program.
I'll also miss her goofy, playful moments with judge Simon Cowell and her astute reviews of performers.
All right, I'm kidding. The astute comment was a joke. I won't miss Abdul much at all because she added next to nothing beyond her cheerleading.
Still, it is somewhat of a risk for an aging hit program to mess with a winning formula, which made Tuesday's announcement that Abdul is leaving a minor surprise despite the rumors. On the other hand, it will be interesting to see if Fox hires a fourth judge to replace her because cast changes often occur when shows age and they even can be beneficial.
I didn't believe the statements by Abdul or Fox for a second that she made the decision and Fox is "saddened" she decided to leave the show in the judging hands of Cowell, Randy Jackson and last season's newcomer, Kara DioGuardi.
The skeptic in me even slightly wonders if Tuesday's announcements were part of a publicity stunt designed to create pressure on Fox to bring her back.
In honor of the Abdul announcement, I invite you in 25 words or less to explain what about Paula you will miss. As an alternative, you can also explain in 25 words or less why you're happy to see her go.
-- Alan Pergament