This past week, many mourned the death of Robin Williams. However, this post is not about the loss of a well-loved comedian and celebrity.
Many of us know people who remind us of someone else and associate him or her with that person.
My first husband Richard was an extremely funny man. He was not a comedian but was always told that he missed his calling and should have been a stand-up comedian.
Richard did impressions of friends, family and others so well that he could easily irritate the person he was impersonating. He told stories and jokes that got better each time he told them to friends, family or the occasional stranger. His routine was enhanced by his frequent dramatization of the joke or story with animated hand and body gestures as well as the many voices or accents he used to make people laugh. Richard was clever and quick with a joke. He loved the attention and the laughter from his audience. He was outgoing and made friends easily, therefore, his audience grew by the day. Many said that the party only started when “Ricky” arrived.
Richard had been practicing his humor since childhood and I wasn’t surprised to learn that he had been in trouble in school on numerous occasions for being the class clown or for “annoying his classmates” as was noted on one of his school report cards.
Friends and relatives agreed on one thing though – Richard’s humor and personality reminded them of Robin Williams.
As we are probably all aware, the comedian also has dark moments and is not funny all of the time. Richard could have depressive periods from time to time – caused by job loss and other disappointments and by illness in his final years. I saw him during his worst moments in our private world as he attempted to continue to act the clown to others.
After Richard passed away, many remembered him for his humor but also remembered that it was marred by various catastrophic life events. But they continued to comment that Richard had reminded them of Robin Williams.
The news of the death of Robin Williams this week has made me sad for reasons that many will not know or understand.