This last week has been a week full of underlying sadness, I and indeed Mrs #1PG have both mourned the death of Robin Williams. It is surprising that the loss of somebody I have never met could have this profound effect on me. I have felt similar before with the death of Peter Ustinov a few years past and many years ago with David Niven.
The tragic loss of one so talented with potential to do so much more in life is probably what hits us hardest. A man that has brought laughter and joy to so many and has touched us with his great acting and his speed of wit. His ability to embolden all his characters both comedic and tragic with a depth and sense of humanity that resonate with us on that base level.
Robin Williams entered my life through his alien concoction that was Mork, which was a regular staple in our house when it was shown on British television, but his profound affect on me came throughout the 1980s. His movies both comic and deep such as The World According to Garp, Moscow on the Hudson, Good Morning Vietnam, and his spectacular stand up ‘Live at the Met’, and finally, Dead Poets Society.
Live at the Met, I remember taking from the Video Shop where I worked at the weekends as a teenager and watching it with my elder step-brother and from that day to this it still has me rolling on the floor with laughter and we can still to this day quote whole routines from it. His portrayal of Mr Keating in Dead Poet’s Society, enriched my flagging love of literature and renewed my desire to act.
I am just exceptionally glad that we live in a time that the legacy he leaves of his movies, his comedy and his television is available for everyone to see and enjoy time and time again.
Some people touch your soul, whether they are characters in a novel or in a film, actors who embody an ideal or soul, men and women who stand up for others, family who look out for you or indeed those friends who stand beside you when no one else will. These are the heroes in life, the ones that can touch us deep in our souls. The ones that can make us cry, laugh and bring us to realisations.
One of the reasons I set up the Perfect Gentleman was to celebrate those people, to find those role models and to make more and more of them, so that the world is a better place. Those that stand by their loved ones and friends in their times of need and give them a hand up or a laugh, as gentlemen we should do that without thinking. Take the time this week to call your Aunt or sit with a friend who you know might need your help.
O Captain, my Captain,
Wherever you maybe, know that you are still touching souls and you will be for many years to come.