Thursday, September 11, 2014

Healing through laughter

What a gut wrenching day for those of us gals who had crushes on the two funniest men of the early 80's...

(source)
It has been 11 years since we lost John Ritter and one month since we lost Robin Williams.

Can you look at that picture and even IMAGINE the complete and utter joy of watching those two riff off of each other?  I'd like to think maybe that's what they're doing right now.  Actually you can watch them do it back in 1978 here.  (Language-NSFW)  Even someone as talented as John Ritter had a little trouble keeping up with Robin's quick wit.  It was truly adorable to watch and I'm so glad we have access to things like that.

When John died, it was like some cruel joke.  How could something that could be diagnosed take him like that?  But just as in life, his death allowed him to take care of his brother Tom one last time when he got a test done that showed he had the same issue and got it corrected.  It let you know the fragility of life and when you lose someone that funny, the world dims a little.  I think of him every September 11th and I smile.  I'm thankful for him and him ushering me into my first crush.

When Robin died under very different circumstances, it was a cruel joke in a different way.  You look at someone who brought so much joy to others was suffering so much inside. PBS aired a beautiful tribute to him the other night and if you have an hour sometime tonight, watch it if you didn't already.  I'm not sure when the interview with him was but it includes some of his friends and co-workers over the years.  I believe Pam Dawber gives the best summary of any I've heard in the last month..."if only he understood what happened to the world when he decided to leave.  The whole world is in mourning."

Amen, girl.

I know everyone is remembering a different event today and I'm sorry, I feel like if I glorify that event yearly, the terrorists win.  So on this day, almost every year, I choose to remember the loss of a great comedian taken too soon...someone who influenced me as a youngin' and made my heart flutter.

I will occasionally catch Three's Company on TV Land at midnight when I'm supposed to be going to sleep and there he'll be making me laugh at losing at strip poker wearing nothing but a box, making me cry when he sprays himself with the water after playing mean jokes on Terri or making me love him with a simple flash of his smile.

I know as time passes, I will feel about Robin the way I feel about John which is nothing but smiles.  I won't cry every time I see him like I do now.  I won't always think of the way he died and remember more how he lived like his family wants us to do.  It won't always hurt so much which is another thing John taught me.  Men like them want fans like us to remember the joy and the laughter and to spread a little to others in this cynical world.


To learn more about the condition that took John Ritter's life, click here.

To learn how you can help the John Ritter Foundation every time you shop through Amazon, click here.

What was your favorite role/episode of John's?  

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12 comments:

  1. Finding that clip of the two of them together is awesome. The fact that John was called up to stage completely impromptu makes it even more of a demonstration of what a true talent he was and he did hold his own pretty well with Robin Williams, but of course also sees first hand why Robin was so far ahead of everyone else.

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    1. Oh I know! I felt like I struck gold when I found that. 7 year old me was in crush heaven! I wish they had worked together in something big, I can only imagine how awesome that would've been!

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  2. I don't really have a favorite. Or, more accurately, whatever I'm watching at the moment is my favorite of the moment. Many of my favorite actors/actresses are like that. Whether they are funny or serious, they so completely take on the persona (with flashes of their own of course) that each role is different and each role can be my favorite for a time.

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    1. Totally feel ya! Pretty much anything John did was my favorite. Even though I can't stand Problem Child, any scene with him in it has me dreamy eyed, even I have to mute it. ;)

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  3. I wanted to come back and add something a little more serious too. I feel the same way you do about reliving a tragedy every year gives power to the terrorists. I know other people feel like it honors the memory of those that lost their lives or lost loved ones. To me, it's a fine line between "never forget" and "don't let the bad guys win". Sometimes I wonder if I walk the right side of the line because while people all around me are rewatching news footage and rehashing the events, I'm doing other things. One of my students wanted to know yesterday if we were going to watch the footage in class today, and when I told him no, he wanted to know why not. I'm not sure how to explain my stand to and 8th grader who clearly grew up in a household where honoring means watching over an over.

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    1. I'm glad to know someone else feels that way. I've blocked everyone's messages on my personal FB account that shows Twin Towers or 'never forget' and I kind of feel like 'you won't let me forget!' The truth is when I see that, I don't think about the people that lost their lives, I think about the images of the buildings being hit that were SEARED into my brain and the people behind it. I can't help that is how I see it and I don't care to see those images again to bring back the trauma of it all. I've said my prayers for those affected by it and their families and that's going to have to be enough. I respect that others do what they need to do this day but I refuse to give over every September 11th to them.

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  4. Maaaaan I loved Three's Company growing up! That show was a truly inappropriate babysitter for me! I couldn't believe it when he died either. I was shocked and saddened as well. He was so so funny. His goofy physical comedy was a precursor to Jim Carrey's schtick.

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    1. LOL...YES that is the perfect description, an inappropriate babysitter. A deliciously hilarious one and looks tame compared to the crap I see on commercials much less shows these days. (Picture me shaking my cane yelling at kids to get off my lawn) His physical comedy was and always will be legendary!

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  5. My favorite 3's Company shows were the ones where John went into flaming mode to throw Furley off his trail

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    1. OMG, those were always so funny and to watch Furley (or Roper) get all weirded out. He really knew how to play the part in an over the top way that I think even the post PC people of today could let slide.

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  6. It is so hard to lose those we love, whether we knew them personally or not. Like you, the death of Robin Williams is still very raw for me. I caught the end of the PBS special on him the other night and it was excellent. Pam Dawber's statement at the end sure said what we were all thinking. If he had known how much the world loved him....would it have made a difference? John Ritter was so bright and sparkling--I loved him, from clear back when he was the minister on the Waltons. Both these guys are/were around my age, so that brings it even closer to home for me. I feel sad that Joan Rivers died as well, but somehow I feel like she was the lucky one. She lived until 81 (I know it's never long enough--believe me I KNOW!), but she never suffered, she was in a coma for a week, and then was gone. I don't know about you, but I pick that way to go over the way that John Ritter and Robin Williams left us.

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    1. Be sure you catch the whole special. It is SO good and we cracked up. It was so healing to watch. It will always be one of those unanswered question...if he only knew, would it have made a difference? We can only hope he feels our love wherever he is now.

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