Oh Captain, My Captain

It’s 2:50am in the morning whereMork - Robin Williams I am and I am just laying in bed with my eyes wide open unable to sleep. Some things are going through my head, and although I do not feel completely stressed or upset I keep having a recurring thought – “Robin Williams is dead”. In less than 10 minutes, it would have been 24 hours since Robin Williams was pronounced dead.

People die. Famous people die. Some people just have this profound effect on you that is almost indescribable – they’re the musician that writes songs that just touch you – get you; the princess with the storybook wedding that turned into a modern day heroine; the animal adventurer with a huge heart and a massive love for life; the sports-star who is a Mrs Doubtfire - Robin Williamsgenuine role model and all round Australia larrikin that people look up to; or the comedian that you grew up with that always makes you laugh whether it’s a topic you should be laughing about or not! These people seem bullet-proof and you consider them part of you life – part of the furniture. The effect on you when they die is almost inconceivable.

The first thing I read yesterday morning was that Robin Williams had died. Throughout the day people paid tribute to Robin Williams on all sorts of media. We were shocked. Some of us shed a tear or two. We recounted our favourite Robin Williams moments. We thought about depression and suicide and how it can affect anyone – no matter what social status, how much money we have, whether we are a genius or not, or whether we are outwardly funny or not. It took me most of the day to process that Robin Williams had died by apparent suicide and that an hour before he was pronounced dead I had actually been thinking of hanging and that just creeped me out a little too much.

Now I am not suicidal. Although I have had suicidal thoughts before and I am currently tired beyond words all of the time and my body aches are killing me after a long weekend, I do not feel I am currently depressed. However I was reading the last quarter of Mockingjay (third book of The Hunger Games trilogy) and suicide is discussed and hanging is discussed – there is even a song called “The Hanging Tree”.

Are you, Are you
Coming to the tree
Wear a necklace of rope, side by side with me.
Strange things did happen here,
No stranger would it be,
If we met up at midnight in the hanging tree.

So I am sure it is a coincidence andDead Poets - Robin Williams bad timing on my behalf to be thinking of such a topic – but it took me a while to get my head around it.

To get my head around Robin Williams’ death I read a few newspaper articles and read up a bit of his history again. This was something I needed to do. I actually needed to do this for my sanity, to try to get into Robin Williams head and accept what he decided to do. I recounted some of his life events today to a few people and when they seemed impressed I knew so much I admitted I had read up on him a bit today. Now the response I got was “you must have had some free time today” to which I was a bit annoyed. No I didn’t have free time today. I have a million things to do. I do not have time to write this blog post (I should be sleeping!)… but sometimes things are important for you to do or work out, that you need to spend time doing it. I am a huge admirer of Robin Williams and I cannot believe he is dead and dead by apparent suicide so I needed to digest it.

So this year I have shed a tear for two comedians – Rik Mayall and now Robin Williams. I find it hard comprehend how much comedic genius the world has lost this year. And I have had some jealous thoughts too – I am not going to see any new shows/movies from these geniuses! And I was also sort of hoping that Robin Williams would have to do a “pension tour” and I would one day get to see him live on day!

Aladdin - Robin Williams

One of my friends said the perfect statusHook - Robin Williams today and I am going to quote it “With the effect on regular people, I can’t imagine how sad the people are that were close to Robin Williams. Give them strength.” This sums up how I feel and how what is really inconceivable is what Robin’s family and friends must be going through.

So now I would like to pay tribute to one of my most favourite actors and an actor I have totally adored from a young age when my favourite TV show was Mork & Mindy; to re-watching the childhood classic Mrs Doubtfire time and time again; to partaking in my favourite Disney cartoon Aladdin (and I still believe it is better than The Lion King!); to admiring the teacher in the teenageInsomnia - Robin Williams thought-provoker Dead Poets Society; to being the grumpy adult worker who forgot he was the child that never grew up in Hook; and then to some of this more sinister roles – for example One Hour Photo, Insomnia and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.


My tribute (and I bet you start hearing his voice!):

Shazbot!Mork & Mindy

Goooooooood morning Vietnam! It’s 0600 hours. What does the “O” stand for? O my God, it’s early! Speaking of early… – Good Morning Vietman 1987

What is a demilitarized zone? Sounds like something out of The Wizard of Oz, Oh, no, don’t go in there. Oh-we-oh Ho Chi’Minh Oh, look, you’ve landed in Saigon. You’re among the little people now. We represent the ARVN Army The ARVN Army Oh, no! Follow the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Follow the Ho Chi Minh Trail. “Oh, I’ll get you, my pretty!” Oh, my God. It’s the wicked witch of the north. It’s Hanoi Hanna! “Now, little GI, you and your little ‘tune-ooh’ too!” “Oh, Adrian. Adrian. What are you doing, Adrian?”Good Morning Vietman 1987

I was the intellectual equivalent of a 98-pound weakling! I would go to the beach and people would kick copies of Byron in my face!  – Dead Poets Society 1989

But if you listen real close, you can hear them whisper their legacy to you. Go on, lean in. Listen, you hear it? – – Carpe – – hear it? – – Carpe, carpe diem, seize the day boys, make your lives extraordinary.Dead Poets Society 1989

O Captain, my Captain. Who knows where that comes from? Anybody? Not a clue? It’s from a poem by Walt Whitman about Mr. Abraham Lincoln. Now in this class you can either call me Mr. Keating, or if you’re slightly more daring, O Captain my Captain. – Dead Poets Society 1989

I’m a knight on a special quest.The Fisher King 1991

Rufio, if I’m a maggot burger why don’t you eat me! You two-toned zebra-headed, slime-coated, pimple-farmin’ paramecium brain, munchin’ on your own mucus, suffering from Peter Pan envy!Hook 1991

But oh, to be free. Not to have to go “Poof! What do you need, “Poof! What do you need, Poof! What do you need?”. To be my own master. Such a thing would be greater than all the magic and all the treasures in all the world. But what am I talking about? Let’s get real here, that’s never gonna happen. Genie, wake up and smell the hummus.Aladdin 1992

Sink the sub. Hide the weasel. Park the porpoise. A bit of the old Humpty Dumpty, Little Jack Horny, the Horizontal Mambo, hmm? The Bone Dancer, Rumpleforeskin, Baloney Bop, a bit of the old Cunning Linguistics? Mrs Doubtfire 1993

You do an eclectic celebration of the dance! You do Fosse, Fosse, Fosse! You do Martha Graham, Martha Graham, Martha Graham! Or Twyla, Twyla, Twyla! Or Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd! Or Madonna, Madonna, Madonna!… but you keep it all inside.Birdcage 1996

See you Monday. We’ll be talking about Freud and why he did enough cocaine to kill a small horse.Good Will Hunting 1997

I’m made of wax, Larry. What are you made of?Night at the Museum 2006

Then you, Elliot Stabler, are a human being. Congratulations. You are not a sheep like I was. You’re a man. Thank you.Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Season 9, Episode 17 Authority (29 Apr. 2008)

You have no idea what I’ve suffered!Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Season 9, Episode 17 Authority (29 Apr. 2008)

I hope these quotes brought back memories and made you giggle! And it is also a timely reminder that if you are depressed, anxious, upset, scared or need someone to talk to, I am always here for you. You are not alone, no matter how overshadowing that black dog is right at that moment.

Nanu-Nanu Robin Williams. Thank you for sharing your genius with the world and I hope you have found eternal peace.


All photos and quotes were sourced from http://www.imdb.com/



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5 thoughts on “Oh Captain, My Captain

  1. Very true Michelle. It shocked me to hear Robin died as a result of suicide. Just goes to show that depression can hit anyone and others might not even notice it.

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