Monday, August 11, 2014

Robin Williams, 1951-2014

In the immortal words of Mork from Ork, "Oh, shazbot!"

Robin Williams is dead. He was found at his home in the San Francisco Bay Area. It appears to have been a suicide, following decades of struggles with alcohol, drugs and depression. He was 63.

He was one of the funniest men alive, until he wasn't.

He didn't really have a connection to sports. Although the opening montage to Mork & Mindy did show him and Pam Dawber on the goalposts at the University of Colorado's Folsom Field.

And there was this scene, from Good Will Hunting.

And in his first appearance as Mork, on Happy Days, he told Richie Cunningham (Ron Howard) that Ork wanted an Earthman. This being late 1950s Milwaukee, Richie was afraid Mork was going to kidnap Hank Aaron of the Braves. And Mork said, "No, we'd have to trade the whole planet for him," before saying it was going to be Richie.

That show was already a generation in the past. And Hank Aaron, thankfully, is still alive. Robin Williams is dead.

Mel Brooks and Tony Bennett were on Johnny Carson's first Tonight Show, 52 years ago; they're still alive. Robin Williams was on his last; he's dead.

Too many good people have died this year. As much as anyone, including my father, who died a few weeks ago, Robin Williams made me laugh.

Thank you, you nut.

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