Oh captain

I was in the Conoco station in Crow Agency some years back , and thought that the man in the khaki shorts with a group of other travelers was Robin Williams. I tried not to look at him, but could not help it, and it probably was not him. But that is the nature of fame. It is an animal apart from the person who owns it, so that we are attracted to people who have it even as they do not know us. I could not help but look at him.

I can only think of two other times where the death of a public figure has caused me personal sadness like this – John Lennon, and George Carlin. It is good, however, that Williams left behind TV shows, standup comedy and movies. His body of work is impressive. Perhaps he was spent. That manic energy that produced the comic genius surely had a downside, and his decision to go out by his own hand is his business. Maybe he was right, that he would never feel good again.

I only write this because like, Lennon and Carlin, his passing leaves a void that no one else can fill. There are no others like him. I feel sadness.

About Mark Tokarski

Just a man who likes to read, argue, and occasionally be surprised.
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10 Responses to Oh captain

  1. steve kelly says:

    Sometimes, funny people have “help.” SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) alleviate depression by upping the levels of serotonin in the brain and curbing the production of the neurotransmitter dopamine. Suppressing dopamine with drugs like Prozac block motivation and the ability to have feelings of great joy or euphoria, including the emotion associated with falling in, or staying in, love. SSRIs are “spirit crushers.” Ever wonder how many suicide victims are on SSRIs? I do not know if Robin Williams was on these medications. Millions are.

    I will probably pay for the following thought, but will say it anyway. Once again, it appears to me at least, that commerce rules as innocents suffer — caught in the crossfire between neoliberal ideology and anything living standing in its path. This economic war is being waged “here at home” too, not just in Ukraine and the Middle East. The quest for total (neoliberal) global dominance is a brutal war against all living things, everywhere. Just to be as clear as possible, global drug manufacturers are generally leading proponents of neoliberal ideology and total global control, ie. New World Order, or some variant.

    Okay, sportsfans, bring it.


  2. Larry Kralj says:

    Mark, I know that we both have a similar background in Catholicism. Therefore, you might like a book I happened upon a few years back by a comic writer and comedian, Tony Hendra. He too was raised strict Catholic, but left the church and began to write some biting satire against the political figures of the times. He struggles with the fact that he had a huge impact with his satire on some of the people he made fun of. He tries to reconcile his biting satire with his previous religious beliefs. After he gets older, he returns to ponder his Catholic upbringing with an old friend, a Benedictine monk, Father Joseph Warrillow. I found the book fascinating. You might too. It’s a good read, and sheds some insight into the comic mind.



  3. Rob Kailey says:

    Terrific tribute, Mark. For me, the list includes Graham Chapman, George Harrison, Fred Rogers and now, Robin Williams. If there is something that I have ‘faith’ in, it is infinite possibility. All of the genius the world loses will be replaced in other form. The hope is that we can form a relationship with the new as strong as we had with the lost. That certainly doesn’t do anything about the sadness, though.


  4. steve kelly says:

    Watched “The Butler” last night. Good to see Williams as President Eisenhower in a small, but powerful, part.


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