Thursday, August 28, 2014

Wilbo Sings Kaddish for Robin Williams, Comedian, Oracle and Master of the Pure Conversation. When Will it Be "Talk Like Robin Williams" Day?

My drive to work gave me time to contemplate my writing for my early morning exercise. The sky was overcast and conned me into driving to work instead of bicycling. To compensate I ordered only one ham and egg slider at the bakehouse. I have a few minutes to put down some words before I go to the office and clean the stables, so to speak.

I followed the paving crew to the new elementary that offers Montessori education. They are laying down blacktop because the students are coming back to school all too soon. I doubt it will be the porous blacktop that allows rainwater to drain through the surface. It's practical, and yet the environmental Montessori has cut down old oaks to pave a parking lot, paving a Druid paradise that once was home to a Catholic Church.

I contemplate the passing of Robin Williams at age 63 and I deeply regret how he passed. When I was trying to work out a way of writing, Robin Williams inspired me because he could talk brilliantly for a full hour, or longer. I wanted to know how he did it. Wayne Brady, the comedian, astounded me too because he could make up a song on the spot. Not just a good song but a song that actually was pleasant to listen to and was funny. Spalding Gray came to my attention. I read many of his books. Gray could entertain an entire auditorium for hours just by talking to them and occasionally referring to his notebooks for more material. Gray also ended his life under his own power, leaping from the Staten Island Ferry, if I remember correctly. Gray had been severely injured in a car accident and his suicide had much to do with the chronic pain he suffered.

In the summer of 2007, I spent afternoons in Virginia Beach at the hospital and library of the Sleeping Prophet Edgar Cayce, who could write books while sleeping. Assistants would sit beside his bed and take dictation. I kept notebooks by my bed after those visits, transcribing dreams.

To paraphrase Auden, I learned a way of talking, a mouth. Robin Williams talked and thousands of men began wearing rainbow suspenders. I was influenced in deep ways, looking up the words nanoo nanoo, a play on the word nano, a really really small measurement. As another seemingly mechanical mouth said, "Let's Get Small". Robin Williams beat Steve Martin to the punch, a love tap punch with low impact, being a small punch. Robin Williams could be said to have invented the idea of nanotechnology.

I am glad to know that Wayne Brady and Steve Martin are okay today. And so am I, although my office has all the charm of a mausoleum.

I thought about honoring Robin Williams by talking a blue streak all day long and letting my text to speech translation turn it all into paragraphs. Maybe I could roll a long sheet of paper into a typewriter and type out a novel to match "On The Road" this week. And then I think, "Why would I use paper?" This text box is an endless roll of paper. Jack Kerouac invented the text box.

Five minutes to the office on this first, "Talk Like Robin Williams Day". Maybe I can take a hint from the author of Howl, Allen Ginsburg, and sing Kaddish.

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