Even before Steve Harvey was everywhere, he was everywhere.
In October he was joined by a host of prominent friends including Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed to announce the launch of his new “Easy Bacon” product.
In July he packed Philips Arena for his annual Neighborhood Awards, drawing 12,000 fans and dozens of celebrity friends to enjoy the evening which featured performances by artists including Ne-Yo, Robin Thicke and a blistering Tamela Mann.
On his popular talk show more recently he joined forces with Patti LaBelle and her viral-video superfan James Wright to taste the suddenly famous sweet potato pie.
And he teamed up with Rickey Smiley for a side-splitting send-up of church ladies.
That was all before Sunday’s snafu, when he named Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez winner when Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach actually won.
“I have to apologize,” Harvey said after walking back onstage for the most painful moment on live television ever. It didn’t help when Harvey then tweeted an apology that called the new Miss Universe by a book in the Bible and misspelled Colombia. He then apologized again, deleted the tweet that referenced “Miss Philippians and Miss Columbia,” and issued a new apology in a series of (correctly spelled) tweets.
Although he had the worst night, he has some of the best friends. Atlanta reality show personality Todd Chrisley, NFL player turned television host Michael Strahan, comedian/host DL Hughley and NBA great Magic Johnson were among those rushing to publicly defend him.
“Hosting anything especially live TV is anything but easy,” posted Strahan, whose on-air repertoire includes daily duty on the “Live! with Kelly and Michael” show. “Steve Harvey is still the man and made an honest mistake. It happens!”
Johnson’s series of tweets in his friend’s defense were especially uplifting.
“Steve Harvey made a mistake tonight, we’ve all made mistakes in our careers & lives. Keep the faith and keep going strong!” he posted. “My brother Steve Harvey, you are the best entertainer on television!”
Chrisley, star of the reality show series “Chrisley Knows Best,” was simply not tolerating any smack talk about his buddy.
“It’s called a mistake, and as humans we all make them,” he posted in response to a couple of unkind comments. “Steve Harvey is one of the greatest. “It was an unfortunate mistake anyone could have made.”
Some of his responses to folks blasting Harvey on Twitter are unprintable in a family newspaper.
By Monday morning, Harvey was back in the saddle: his Twitter feed featured an ad for TracFone. He ended things on Sunday, on what had to be the longest night of his life, by shining the spotlight back on the contestants.
“I don’t want to take away from this amazing night and pageant, as well as the wonderful contestants,” he said. “They were all amazing.”