Robin Williams, The Real Thing…

Robin Williams  Photo:
Robin Williams  photo:

I was hoping that the news about Robin Williams was an internet hoax. He was a treasure. He always made me laugh and feel joyous, ebullient, positive.

Little did anyone know that inside he wasn’t laughing.

Being a publicist I am guilty of creating what is perceived as perfect images. Not everyone I have promoted is a shining example of a righteous human being, but their talent was admirable.

Conversely, you can create  monsters out of simple, nice folk who have a talent and then they drink the Kool-Aid and buy into the manufactured image.

I had met Robin Williams on several occasions. My take was he was a genuinely kind, funny and real person. He was filming a movie in Marin County and stumbled upon my daughter’s soccer practice in Ross…I was coaching. He asked if he could scrimmage with us and he was a kick…enthusiastic, accessible, fun, vivacious. He was Robin Williams.

Another time he was at a restaurant with his son from his first marriage. My daughter and his son hit it off and they played together and Robin and I talked. Or, Robin was Robin and I was enthralled, laughing my ass off.

There was another hilarious encounter on Mt. Tamalpais when he was biking with Lance Armstrong.

The world has lost a great talent. The outpouring of emotions is incredible. I wonder if this display of love and caring could of helped him see that he had much to live for.

That’s two amazing men in the last few months that have left us devastated. Philip Seymour Hoffman was another person whose talent I admired.


We chatted on a spectacular day in Central Park when he was filming, Jack Goes Boating, at the lake by the Loeb Boathouse. He was taking a break, lounging on a bench and reached out to my doggies, Berkeley and Madison. We talked and he was lovely, inquisitive and kind.

The public perception of celebrities is stilted. They see a wealthy, famous, perceived happy celebrity and think that they have everything. What do they have to be depressed about? Never the case. Which raises the question, why is it that very few of us bring their true selves to the party?


I think that is why I disliked living in Marin County so much. Everyone went around in their pristine, expensive white tennis outfits, diamond tennis bracelets, french braided hair and bragged about their perfect children, husband, life, 3000 square foot homes and amazing vacations.

It turns out that many of the husbands were having affairs, the kids had issues, some were living way beyond their means and divorce was prevalent. Perhaps, we could have leaned on each other if honesty was involved. Why paint a deceptive picture?

Moving forward, let’s all try to enjoy the life we have…nothing wrong with wanting more or striving for excellence, but let’s practice honesty, sincerity, try to form and maintain true, real friendships and make the most of today.

Oh no, I just felt off my soapbox and broke a gel nail…damn.



  1. Great tirade- wonderful ending!

  2. Excellent essay. So very true. We should always remember to be real and to be kind. It’s a lot easier than we might think.

    • John Woolf says:

      This was an excellent read!!! I remember you talking to me when you called up bluehost support and how funny and real you were. You inspired me then and even more now with your words. It makes me happy to hear how Robin has influenced you in your life. It’s not every day you get to interact with a man like that. I hope he can find peace as he turns to the lord without all the craziness that this world brings. This world will miss such a great man. I look forward to reading more!

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