The day the laughter died

August 12, 2014
A long, long time ago, I can still remember
How that music used to make me smile
And I knew if I had my chance
That I could make those people dance
And maybe they’d be happy for a while

But February made me shiver, with every paper I’d deliver
Bad news on the doorstep, I couldn’t take one more step
I can’t remember if I cried, when I read about his widowed bride
But something touched me deep inside the day the music died

We all know that February 3rd 1959 is considered the day the music died.  I now say that August 11, 2014 is the day the laughter died. 

I had the privlidge to meet Robin Williams for about 45 minutes back in 2003.  He was doing something he loved.  RIding his bicycle. It was the day before the Ride for the Roses.  I was one of about one hundred individuals who had raised enough money to get a private ride with Lance Armstrong.  (This is not the forum to have that discussion).

We started off as a group and Lance immediately started a pace I could not hold.  I don’t know if he wanted to shed as many of the one hundred as possible or if that was just his pace.  Since he talked on his phone the whole time I hung on, I assume it was the latter. 

I fell off the back and rode alone for a while.  From behind, another cyclist joined me.  I turned and saw it was Robin Williams.  He was the same Robin you see on every interview.  Flat out funny.  No cow was sacred, including the ones we rode past.  He joined the ride anonymously to support the Lance Armstrong Foundation.  He would have a much bigger presence the following day for the Ride for the Roses. 

 He spoke passionately about cycling.  He loved the sport and he loved riding.  Robin told me he had 50 bikes.  My next two questions and his answers can give you a little glimpse into the man.

His favorite was the cruiser from Mrs. Doubtfire

When asked why he had 50 bikes? “Because I can.”

By the end of the private ride, about 30 riders had gathered around Mr. Williams who was as nice as a human being could be.