RIP Robin Williams: The Day the Laughter Died

John McManamy Health Guide
  • Real quick: I emerged from four days off the grid in the Oregon woods to discover that comedian Robin Williams was found dead from an apparent suicide.

     

    Here is a snippet from a piece I wrote many years back: "You know you have bipolar, the joke goes, if you think Robin Williams is too laid back. "Manic" is the term most often used to describe his rapid-fire free-associating improvisational delivery. Conversely, simply saying his name is the best way to describe a manic episode to someone unfamiliar with bipolar disorder."

     

    Last year, here on HealthCentral, I wrote: "A Wikipedia list of famous people with depression lists 23 comedians, including Jim Carrey, Robin Williams, and Conan O’Brien. This does not include writers who are funny and one US President."

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    I also wrote: "Depression, when it overwhelms us, is not funny. Life, when it overwhelms us, is not funny. Too often, I find myself on the verge of tears just trying to cope with the ordinary. When I’m really down, I often find myself saying, “One day I’ll laugh at this.”" Robin Williams seems to have lived that kind of life. He found a way to laugh, then make us laugh. Then the laugher died.

     

Published On: August 12, 2014