Timeout for Robin Williams

Man, I am sad. I just read a report that Robin Williams is dead and the cause may be suicide. That is a sucker punch.

I feel for and will pray for his family but shaking my head right now.

This is how I will remember him — with his twinkling eyes:

robinwilliams

Man, I am Bummed. Harold Ramis Died

I just read the news. He was young! We’ll miss you Harold. You gave me years of laughs, and it meant so much.

harold-ramis-stripes1981-1040[a scene from Stripes]

What I really loved was his great writing. Groundhog Day is a masterpiece.

Bill Murray Steven Tobolowski

No Ramis in this photo, but I love this scene and loved it and loved it. And a little trivia that no one cares about but makes me chuckle. Steven Tobolowsky is the son of the pediatrician I saw as a kid. He’s nothing like his dad who was a bit of a stuffed shirt and never laughed much less smiled. Would have loved a Ramis’ comedy about doctors now that I think of it!

All of this has me with a hankering to rev up my version of a blog award — The Do Wah Diddy Diddy.

Tangent — I’m in a Funky Mood

This isn’t a critical commentary on fandom or my being a fangirl, or maybe it is. I’m not sure yet. Frankly, I would have loved to have participated more in the Berlin premiere festivities and all that’s ensued since. I just couldn’t. The events of my life for the last two and half weeks have been consuming and surreal. But first a little history.

For those who haven’t figured it out yet, and I think I said it one time on blog, SO is a vicar in a small town. Yes, that’s right, I’m Harry Kennedy. ;-) And as SO’s significant other, I’ve seen and done many things that sometimes confound me at how life has turned out. When I was pondering what I would be when I grew up, I don’t think anything to do with a vicar ever factored into it. And if someone had told me I would be intimately involved with a vicar, I would have laughed until I wet my pants. For the record, SO wasn’t a vicar for the first almost 20 years I knew him.

But SO being a vicar the last several years means we often deal with tragedy and sometimes deal with death. And when I say deal with it, I mean not only going where tragedy and death have occurred on occasion in order to help the people involved but also having an open door policy to our home, so that hurting and devastated people can come see us when they want. When my kids were little, we put a limitation on this, but despite that, my children have seen and heard a lot of what goes on in the world that’s ugly. We have had drunk people, beat up people, devastated people in our living room on many, many occasions. As to death, SO and I also see the side that most of the public does not see very often if at all — being with someone when they die, the coroner coming to call, the undertaker showing up not long after and sometimes witnessing the devastation left by someone who has killed himself. These are experiences I’ve had countless times since we moved to this place.

To top that off, for over ten years I sat on the board of a cemetery district which oversees cemeteries in a few of the little towns around here, and when you deal with small cemeteries, it means you may be overseeing burials. I’ve overseen countless burials and a couple of reburials, and that includes sometimes standing in an open grave. I remember one time standing in a particular grave where a woman being buried was to be placed beside her parents, who had died about 70 years earlier. When we were preparing the grave, the ground was very soft, and the coffin of one of her parents had shifted a little so that its corner was poking into the woman’s grave site. I looked over and the wood had rotted enough on the buried coffin that there was a hole big enough for my hands to fit in up to my shoulders, and I could see some of the blousy liner coming out of the hole. Yeah, that was creepy, but I got over it.

And I’ve gotten over so many things. Looking at a hole in a buried coffin is nothing. I’ve gotten over being with two teenage boys in the counseling room at the high school when SO told them (at their mother’s request) their dad had committed suicide an hour before, and they had to be told so that the town’s people wouldn’t break it to them. I got over watching a man rejected by his father on the father’s deathbed. I got over one of my closest friend’s sons being lost in the river and being with her when Search and Rescue came to tell her several days later that his body had been found 8 miles down the river. He was 18. I got over the guy down the street shooting himself in the head with a shotgun, and SO and I being asked to come to the place before it had been cleaned up. And I could go on and on with much worse.

Maybe I’m not completely over these things as it’s hard to type this. But when I say I’ve gotten over something, I mean enough to bounce back and do what needs to be done. That’s always been my best ability — to roll with the punches no matter what they are, and I’ve done it and done it and done it, but on Monday, December 9th and the following days, I was almost in a zombie like state.

What created my malaise was three deaths occurring the week before and then about 15 minutes before the premiere started, I got a call about a dear friend of mine who had been careflighted to the city and died within a few hours. No one knew she was ill. The next day I was talking to another friend and said to her how it’s eerie these things usually happen in threes, but this time it was four. As soon as I said it, I stopped and had the horrible thought that this was the beginning of the second three. The next day two more deaths occurred.

All of this is a very small part of the terrible events I’ve come close to over the last 15 years. I ask myself sometimes if it’s only SO’s profession which makes me privy to so much heartache. That’s some of it, but I’m not sure. I don’t know anything except that tragedy has become the norm. Most days I can deal with it, but sometimes I get overwhelmed, and I think that’s a good sign. May I never become so accustomed to horror that it has no effect on me.

Is there any wonder why I want to be lighthearted and laugh when I come here? Does that mean Richard Armitage or anyone else is a lesser person? I hope not. Just know that my blog and many of my comments are supposed to be fun for the most part, and to make it something that is life and death is not my intent, and that’s not a judgment on anyone else. It’s where I’m coming from.

Given all of this, I don’t want to forget the point, which is to love people as God loves, help others as often as I can, and never weary of doing good. And I appreciate this:

Pope-Francis-Kissing-disabled-Man

And I keep listening to this:

I had to get this post out of my system. Now that it’s done maybe I can get back to cutting up. And I’ll be giving my review of Desolation of Smaug and not whimping out by letting SO do it for me as I did last year. Just need to go see the movie and keep staying away from other reviews and spoilers.

Uncle

I’ve tried to make my presence here as free of my personal trials and tribulations as I can make it (some of my diary entries notwithstanding). But sometimes I just can’t forget what’s going on around me and have fun here. For almost two weeks now I have been grappling with some things that make me glad there is a God; otherwise, I think I really would have gone insane. When I got home from Comic-Con, a family member was suffering from some serious health issues. I wasn’t home a day until I found out there was a murder/suicide of a couple we knew. This is a small community which means things like this always affect our household whether we know the people personally or not. We happened to have known these people, and the wife was our family doctor’s nurse for years and years, so we not only knew her personally but as someone we saw anytime we went to the doctor.

About the time I got used to the shock of this, there was a death of one of our kids’ close friends. A day later we got word on the shooting in Aurora, and yes, we know someone whose relative was injured, and the person we know had kids at Columbine High School when that shooting happened! A couple of days ago we got word that the daughter of some very close friends of ours almost died by going off into a canyon and ending upside down in the river a few miles from our house. It is a miracle she is alive and not permanently injured although she does have some serious injuries. And there is more, but I think you get the idea that I just haven’t been in the mood to talk about Comic-Con.

For all of you who have sent me email or a personal message, thank you. They are all very sweet and mean a great deal to me.

Give me some time and I’ll get back in snark mode, but I just can’t today.

Take care,
Frenz

A Rabid Fan?

I didn’t capitalize the A in rabid, but I’m sure some of you already saw it as a capital, or it jarred you that it wasn’t. No, this isn’t a piece about the grammatical odyssey of being a Richard Armitage fan. But I am going to talk about something that hits me from time to time like a little slap in the face.

Being intensely curious about every cussed thing, it was only natural that I started reading the New Zealand newspapers, and I feel certain I will read them long after RA has departed from the Kiwis. In the meantime, I am affected strongly when I read there has been a plane crash near Auckland. My immediate response, “Oh no, I hope it wasn’t Richard, or anyone associated with the movie!” That isn’t me. Normally I would feel for the people involved, probably say an earnest prayer for their loved ones, and then move on. But the visceral response startled me, and the few times it’s happened have bugged me. I make a lot of jokes about being up the CWS, but an almost knee jerk reaction like this bothers me a little.

I guess the point of this post is personal therapy. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not super worried about my behavior. If I were, I probably would never admit this. But I am curious enough about it to examine myself and publicly.

It could just be that I’ve been surrounded by so much death the last several years that I’ve become jumpy. And my encounters with it just never seem to stop. A few days ago I found out a good friend of mine has about a month to live. I went to see her yesterday, and thankfully, it was a wonderful visit. She is off of all of her treatments and is only on a little bit of morphine. Her alertness was a bit stunning, and she and I and SO had a great chat. When we stood up to leave her, he did something he never does. He said to her, “Can I give you a kiss?” and then he bent down and hugged her a bit and kissed her temple.

On the way out, I said, “I have never seen you do that before. What prompted you?”

“She’s the kind of person who can receive a kiss like that — a gesture of love from a friend. Besides, you know I’ve always been a big fan of hers.”

Yeah, I knew that. I’ve been a fan too, and I’m going to miss her terribly. I also feel for the loved ones of whomever died in that plane crash. It hurts to lose someone you care about.

Whitney Houston, May She Be at Peace at Last

Whitney Houston is dead at 48. I can’t stop shaking my head.

edit: I have to add this video even if it doesn’t seem to exactly fit the subject at hand. Whitney Houston is the ONLY one who sang this and it was enjoyable. The rest of the time I can feel the masochist who wrote the music laughing at us all when we sit through it.

Timeout for Norway

I started to call this post “What the hell?!” but out of respect for the dead, I couldn’t bring myself to do it; however, that was one of my first thoughts when I heard about the tragedies in Norway. Now given that I just said hell, and I’ve said other “choice words” on this blog, I suppose you wouldn’t believe me if I said I am a Christian, and in fact, do have a love for the Almighty. Nevertheless, it’s true, and thankfully, He is gracious and I’m still a work in progress. Of course I bring this up because I’ve read the killer in Norway is part of a fundamentalist Christian group. I’m not sure what they believe, but whatever prompted the killing spree doesn’t in any way jibe with what I believe, and as a Christian, I vehemently denounce what was perpetrated. It was wrong. But enough about that, I don’t want this to be a diatribe about Christians for or against them. I want to pay my respects to those who died and to those who loved them.

Life is precious, and despite the fun I sometimes have on this blog, I cannot go blithely along while something obliterates it like this. Having been around a lot of death and having counseled people who have lost loved ones, I feel keenly for those people and especially those who lost their children. No matter how many times I am around someone who has lost a child, I still cannot process that horror. It is certainly something that I’ve asked the Lord about many times. For now it’s obvious to me that sin in the world kills people, steals precious things from them and certainly destroys innocence, and this is such a painful example of how it lays waste. Since this is beginning to feel like a sermon, I’m going to stop here and just say that I’m so sorry for the suffering and my heartfelt prayers and sympathy go to those in Norway.

edit: As for Amy Winehouse, I have no words but to say I’m terribly sad just as I was when Kurt Cobain died or Heath Ledger or any number of fairly young people who were unhappy and died too early.