Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Oh Robin :(

I’ve come out of blogging retirement for one day only, just because I feel like I have to write this all down and get it out somewhere.
There aren’t many things that happen now days that make me feel like I just need to talk and talk and talk, or write and write and write.  There are bad things going on in the world, things that I feel strongly about and things that I don’t, but sometimes it’s hard to convey into words how something makes you feel.  Alas, there are certain times where the thoughts I have on a certain subject are so strong, I’m so sure of, that they are bubbling away inside me and I feel like if I don’t extract them from my head and put them into words onto a paper or a screen it’ll drive me mad.  So this is what I am doing, and this post is purely for my own benefit.
I woke up this morning to the news that Robin Williams had died.  I am ashamed to say that before this morning, I probably hadn’t thought about Robin for a longer than a few seconds at most, for years.  It’s always hindsight that makes you wish you had watched his films and laughed at his stand up and in a way felt more connected to him at the time when something like this happens.  It might sound like I am being dramatic, but Robin Williams was literally one of my childhood heroes and I didn’t realise how much of a loss I would feel  for someone I didn’t know personally. 
I grew up with his films, watching Ms Doubtfire continuously, LOVING the bit where he smushes his face into the cake so it looks like he’s wearing a face mask and secretly thinking it looked nice when the cream dropped into the coffee and wanting to eat the entire thing.  I LOVED Hook, undoubtedly one of the all time greatest childhood films.  I remember watching Jack the most, over and over again and even though I was young when it came out, the quality of his acting meant that I would sit there with tears in my eyes when Jack delivered his valedictorian speech, about how life is short and that you have to ‘make your life spectacular’.  How correct he was, and it’s a testament to him that he can touch a 10 year old in that way, move them to tears, when normally the deep and meaningful aspects of films like that normally go over the child viewers head.
I think the circumstances of Robin’s death are particularly hard to take.  Long battle with alcohol abuse and a history of severe depression.  It’s unfathomable to me that someone that spent his life bringing such joy and happiness to others, someone so mad and full of laughter was unable to see it for himself.  You could tell that Robin Williams was as wacky and zany in real life as he was in his films, and it’s wonderful to read all the stories that people are coming out with today about meeting him in real life and the funny things he did.  There’s also a thousand stories about how kind he was, a ‘normal down to earth’ person described by his neighbours, someone who desperately wanted to make other people happy but just couldn’t make himself happy.
Part of me wishes that something had set this all off a week ago, something happy had caused us all to share our mutual love of Robin Williams on twitter, talk about all his amazing films, share personal experiences of him, photos, things that he did and will continue to do through his films that will continue to have us laughing for the rest of our lives.  He wasn’t just a comedian, he was a joy to watch and every kid’s dream grown up.  I remember watching him in films and wishing he was friends with my parents or something, just because it would be fascinating to watch and interact with him in real life.  The thought of him dying alone and desperately sad in his house is heart breaking.  I wish he could have seen the entire world discussing how much he was loved, like we’re doing today.  Maybe it would have been different.
I truly feel like we're all suffering a loss today, so my thoughts go out to the family and friends who really knew him.  For just his admirers and fans it's a kick in the gut, so the pain they must be going through, I can't bear thinking about.
The world is a worse place today.
RIP Genie.  You’re free.
"but only in their dreams can men be truly free.. it was always thus and always thus will be"