We’ll miss you Mr. Williams:
When I saw the news about the untimely death of Robin Williams I had to read it three times to make sure there wasn’t a misunderstanding.  I know a lot of people and like almost all whom I know.  Of all the people I have never met, the only one I liked was Robin Williams.  The closest I ever came was back when I was doing standup comedy.  One of the comedians that passed through had worked with Robin Williams.  There was no question he liked the man as much as the rest of us did. 

I guess there is one more thing.  Back when be played Popeye in the movie, I kind of looked like him.  That’s no longer true, but back then is was almost eerie.  At least I thought so.  I was dating a girl who was tall, dark haired, pale and very thin.  She looked like Olive Oil.  We’d go to a restaurant and I’d say, “Eye, party of two.”  Nobody ever cracked a smile.  I’ve tried; I’m no good at comedy. 

So not knowing the man I cannot speak of him.  All I can speak of is his image.  That image was of a wise, loving, caring, brilliant man.  And now we know he would get depressed.

That hardly speaks ill of him.  Most of my good friends get depressed.  It’s a circuit that seems to be broken in my own mind.  I get sad, of course.  I’m sad now.  But I don’t get depressed. 

And why not?  We all have our personal demons.  Mohammed said Allah sent his prophets into the world to preach the truth.  Some died while traveling.  Some were slaughtered by angry crowds.  Some were executed by authorities.  Some became celebrities and had universities named after them and addressed cheering throngs.  Allah called them back and asked, “Well, how did it go?  Did anybody believe?”  They answered, “We have no idea.  Only Allah can see into the heart of a man.”  And only Allah can know our demons, but even I know that there are a lot of them.  None here, actually, but I’m probably a tiny minority.

But nobody needs private demons.  The public demons are enough.  Cast your eyes across the news.  You could weep an ocean.  And if you are kind and intelligent, if you care and understand what is going on, what’s to stop you?  Not being depressed has to be a sign of a major character flaw. 

Of course I do have my secret, which I scream from the rooftops.  If good people would marry cousins then there would be lots of good babies.  Enough good babies and we can fix things.  If you aren’t working on that, you aren’t trying to help.  And I try.  The expectation of failure does not trouble me in the least.  I am not obliged to succeed.  I only must try.

But I do miss Robin Williams.  I liked him.

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