Katie Couric is a veritable pop icon herself -- so it stands to reason that the veteran TV journalist and talk show host, 56, has been squired by a few famous men in her time. In a typically off-the-cuff chat with Howard Stern on his self-titled SiriusXM radio show on Wednesday, May 29, Couric dished on her very brief, PG-rated romantic encounters with Bob Saget and Jeff Probst -- and about the date that never was with Michael Jackson.
Now dating New York financier John Molner (since summer 2012), the widowed TV star admitted to Stern that her dates -- one each -- with "Full House" star Saget and Probst, from "Survivor," didn't exactly rock anyone's world.
57-year-old Saget "was fun, he was really fun," Couric recalled. "I had fun, I don't think I did it for him." Confirming that the comedian and actor never called again, Couric assured Stern "that's alright." As for Survivor host Probst? "I went out with Jeff Probst once too," she said of Probst, 51. "I think he had puka shells on -- that was kind of a weird thing."
Probst similarly never followed up. After Stern was flabbergasted at both men's lack of interest, Couric was philosophical -- and blunt. "I can't say that I was devastated that neither called me back," she confided. "I thought they were both nice guys ... I don't think there was real magic there with either [of them], but I enjoyed spending time with them."
Added Couric, "I think women need to be much more open-minded." The former "Today" show anchorwoman and mother of two -- who has spoken at length in the past about her date with a much-older Larry King -- also revealed that the late King of Pop tried to broker a dinner date through his friend and spiritual advisor, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.
Boteach "called me in my office at the 'Today' show," Couric said of the phone call, which took place about a dozen years ago. "[He said] 'Katie, I have a question for you, are you seeing anyone?' And I thought, this is so beyond creepy that Rabbi Shmuley is hitting on me. I'm like 'Rabbi Shmuley, you have like nine kids, what's going on here?' I said 'Actually, I am [seeing someone].' Because I had a boyfriend at the time."
She continued the bizarre tale: "He said, 'Oh, that's a shame. ... Michael [Jackson] said to me 'That's the kind of girl I would like to go out with ...' and 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's husband Jay Monahan passed away in 1998 of colon cancer; Couric dated financier Brooks Perlin from 2006 to 2011.
Couric's take on the late superstar's interest? "Not to be too psychoanalytical about it, but I think he was looking for a little normalcy possibly, and maybe he saw me as kind of a normal person," she reasoned. "I do regret not having dinner with him. That would have been insane -- breaking bread with Michael Jackson!"