Monday’s are so terrible anyway. I didn’t need anything else ruining it for me. Just Monday being Monday is usually bad enough.
Nevertheless, I was at the office, free from the phones for but a minute, scribbling out a stupid joke for a webisode I’ve been writing when at 4:20pm, an email from my friend Sarah read: “Did you hear Robin Williams died?”
That instant wave of shock and disbelief was quickly dispelled, replaced with complete sadness when I saw multiple headlines confirming the suicide.
Asphyxiation. Terrible. Maybe he went on his own terms, but I really have to doubt that. Depression led this iconic personality, this treasure, to a very lonely place and then really just squeezed the life out of him.
Well, it made me think about my life, my contributions and how my time is being spent in this time and space on Earth. My list of accomplishments is relatively short (and most regrettable if you add up all of the “catheads” I’ve ever made). My list of goals, well, I can’t even see the end of that list, but I keep trudging along, hoping to get it all done before my own time is up.
It’s simply a coincidence that I’ve been modeling this character for about a month, off and on, working through numerous revisions, trying to have a unique “something” for the next 11SecondAnimation contest that I might enter. During the creative process, I managed to peel a few dollars out from under my mattress to purchase a new computer (so you’ll never have to hear me whine about that again!).
I’ve always wanted to create a character that was basically a shape with a face, like Humpty Dumpty in “Puss in Boots” (and heavily inspired by). My friend said this guy looked like a potato, and possibly he does, but there’s already a Mr. Potato Head, and I never intended for him to be a potato anyway.
He’s just an ordinary blob. Or a bundle of joy. A menace. A flibbertijibbet. A will-o’-the wisp. A clown! He is the thing I want to partner with to create unique works. But what to name him?
While I’ve struggled to complete his expressions and make him animatable (maybe that’s not a word?), I’ve been unwilling to attach a moniker. Nothing stupid like Baldy or Jumbo or Frank Bermensweet (sorry to the actual Frank Bermensweet, if he exists).
However, in light of this most recent and tragic of events, I can’t help but feel the perfect name for this character should be that of one of the great American actors and comedians of my time, someone who has moved me to laughter and tears with such ease, someone whom I’ve always rooted for, and who I thought would live forever just to entertain me, because that’s what he loved to do.
Before the month is up, Robin should be complete and competition ready, and I can’t wait to have fun with him.
To Robin Williams, thank you for the inspiration over my lifetime. May you rest in peace. Your genius will be surely missed.