Wednesday, 13 August 2014

On Death and Dying - Nanu Nanu.

Am I the only one listening to the press conference concerning Robin William's death and shaking my head?
 Don't get me wrong, I'm all for fact checking, and getting things straight -- but I'm finding myself feeling bad for the officer fielding the questions of this conference.  

He read a statement that painted a pretty clear picture if you were paying attention, yet folks are asking questions that he has already answered - fairly descriptively I might add - but each new voice asks a different version of the same question almost as though they were so focussed on their own question and getting their voice heard on the air during a big press conference that they forgot to listen.  I've gotta say, this officer has some incredible patience!!  

A very public and much loved actor has taken his life, and a nation is gobsmacked - many are taking this as an opportunity to remind us all of the importance of seeking assistance, and reaching out to those around us who may be dealing with mental illness or substance abuse -- and there's nothing wrong with that -- it's natural, almost expected..  as are those who are posting about how selfish it is and how dare he take his life -- what was he thinking??  He had so much, how could he possibly throw it all away? 

It is those posts that concern me most, I can't imagine that too many people wake up one morning and just decide that there's nothing on the calendar today or perhaps that they are bored, so today's the day!  Few things in life (or death) are so cut and dried.  

We are all standing under the same blue sky, but not all of us feel the warmth of the sun, or the moisture of the rain in the same fashion.  What is mediocrity to you, may be elaborate to someone else and so the story goes. 

A nation of movie-goers is gobsmacked by the news we have lost (yet another) icon of our childhood, one of america's funny men wasn't as happy as he appeared - who'd have thought it?  That makes sense to me -- to a point -- but when an officer tells you that the deceased was clothed, at what point does it really matter how many clothes he had on?  Are we wondering if the belt he used matched his outfit or if it was a spare?  Come on people, really? Is this really what we've become?

Have we all been blinded by too many years of watching CSI and Law and Order, that we think we ought to jury every case that comes along? The preliminary findings surely must have missed something, and your questions about what wrist the cuts were on are going to make a difference to the outcome?   Hmmm..  I don't know, but it sure does make me wonder.. 

In the midst of the social media mayhem, let us not forget, that while the world lost a man this week that brought to us many beloved characters, some of us grew up with him, and for many of us so did our children.  A man whose image would almost always evoke a smile before he'd even utterred a word, and outright laughter as soon as he had. (Until now) 

Let us not be so fixated on knowing all the sordid details of his passing that we forget, that he was someone's son, someone's husband, and a father to 3  first and foremost, who, unlike us, cannot get back to so many of the things we loved about him by simply popping a movie in and putting on some popcorn.  This isn't a movie -- this is real life!! 

Accept that we may never know what he was doing when his wife went to bed that night, we may never learn what was in any letter he may have left behind  -- but perhaps we weren't meant to.  Even the most public among us, deserve to have some things kept private ~ don't they?  

The sad reality of the situation is however, that in the weeks to come we will likely hear about every fibre of the carpet under his feet, and the quality of the paper, and what every person in the universe still living thinks about whatever it is that he may or may not have said, thought, felt and done. 

Maybe it's the daughter in me thinking back to my own father's passing and the crass invasive, and often just plain ignorant questions folks asked like they were really owed an answer, I cannot be sure -- but I have often wondered if people knew going in all the scrutiny and invasion that public life would hold, if they would still do it anyhow?  Surely all the money in the world can't be enough to make you feel like every potty break you took was happening on TV?  (on a sidenote: Suddenly, I hear my late friend Andrew saying -- but what FINELY FASHIONED  toilet paper I would be able to afford..  yeah.. he was a little warped like that.. it was one of the things that I always loved about him. I should mention he was also our games master when we played RPG's way back when.. but alas, I digress..)

I put the question out yesterday when I posted the news of his passing, I later realized that I'd asked an impossible question.  For every character that I came up with that I loved, at least 2 more came to mind and before I had gotten too far I realized that I'd really put myself in a real pickle. 

It is NOT possible to pick just ONE of his works and call it the best! 

He first walked into my life as Mork on Happy Days that I watched regularly with my parents, and Mork and Mindy was a staple in our house. I even had the Mork figure with his spaceship.  The first movie I ever saw in theatre was "Popeye" on my very first date, I was in grade six.  

With fond memories of Good Morning Vietnam, Hook, I still picture my sister singing the "Batty" song from Ferngully.  Whose kids didn't love the Genie in Aladin? and already I'm struggling to choose 3, nevermind just one. 

I would be remiss if I didn't mention Dead Poets Society, and Good Will Hunting, Mrs Doubtfire, and Jumanji, oh and don't forget about our favourite nutty professor in Flubber.. and we haven't even touched on RV, Licensed to Wed, Night at the Museum, The Big Wedding, or Happy Feet -- Can you feel my pain?

Most recently we'd been watching Robin play Simon Roberts alongside Sarah Michelle Gellar and Brad Garrett the sitcom the Crazy Ones.  We've been watching listings for a while now for some works in post-production coming out soon.   

I don't know how anyone could pick just one -- can we settle on a top 10?

In the wake of the loss of another one of our beloved entertainers, our hearts are heavy.  Perhaps it makes us look a little at our own mortality thinking about those that have been around for so much of our lives, being at the end of theirs..   

A friend posted the quote I included with this blog post today and it sums it up nicely, I couldn't resist saving it to my favourite quote file.  This graphic was created by Artist Joe Petruccio.  

"Never say goodbye, because saying goodbye means going away, and going away means forgetting."  - Peter Pan. 

Sweet Dreams Robin ~ I hope you have found peace and that one day your loved ones will too.   

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