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SHORT TAKES : Garagiola to Undergo Surgery

<i> From Times Wire Services</i>

“Today” co-anchor Joe Garagiola will be off the NBC show for four weeks to have elective surgery for a problem that is “not life-threatening,” a spokeswoman for the show said today.

Garagiola, 64, declined to disclose the nature of the surgery, said spokeswoman Mary Neagoy, and his medical leave from the program starts Tuesday.

After the changes that led to Jane Pauley’s exit from “Today” after 13 years, NBC hired Garagiola, a former “Today” co-host, to return to the show as a third co-anchor with Deborah Norville and Bryant Gumbel.

The gregarious former baseball catcher returned to the show in June, and has been appearing on it on Tuesdays through Thursdays.

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