“It’s time for a convoluted stream of consciousness,” Robin Williams quipped last year on Reddit, the social networking site that lets users create “threads” for posting links and comments about a particular topic. That day’s subject: Robin Williams.
The star of films like “Patch Adams,” “Mrs. Doubtfire” and “Jumanji” invited fans to “ask me anything” via a live Reddit thread in posts to his Facebook page and Twitter account on Sept. 25, 2013. Fans turned to the social website to submit their queries. What ensued were some genuine and hilarious Williams moments; the beloved actor and comedian offered everything from memorable movie moments and his thoughts on fellow actors, to his favorite book and even advice on dealing with depression. Williams, 63, was found dead at his home in California in a suspected suicide on Monday.
Here are 10 things we learned about the late Robin Williams from his correspondence with Reddit users 10 months ago:
Williams’ favorite celebrity to impersonate was Jack Nicholson. “He once was with me at a benefit and leaned over and said ‘even oysters have enemies.’ In a very intense voice,” Williams wrote. “I responded with ‘Increase your dosage.’”
And the actor whose impression of Williams flattered him most? Dana Carvey, Williams said.
Williams once cheered up Steven Spielberg during the filming of “Schindler’s List.” “I think I only called him once, maybe twice,” Williams wrote. “I called him when I was representing People for the Valdheimers Association. A society devoted to helping raise money to help older Germans who had forgotten everything before 1945. I remember him laughing and going ‘thank you.’”
He once tried to buy a sex toy from a shop in San Francisco -- dressed as Mrs. Doubtfire (warning: the following post contains language some readers might find offensive). “One time in makeup as Mrs. Doubtfire, I walked into a sex shop in San Francisco and tried to buy a double-headed dildo. Just because. Why not? And the guy was about to sell it to me until he realized it was me -- Robin Williams -- not an older Scottish woman coming in to look for a very large dildo and a jar of lube. He just laughed and said ‘what are you doing here’ and I left. Did I make the purchase? No. Did I walk away with a really good story? Yes.”
His favorite book series was Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation,” a science fiction collection about a mathematician who invents an algorithm to predict the future. “It's one of the greatest books of all time, and the greatest character is The Mule,” Williams wrote. Asimov’s Mule is a mutant who can alter the emotions of people.
Williams’ daughter Zelda Williams was named after Princess Zelda of “The Legend of Zelda” video game series. “It wasn't actually me [who named her,] it was my son Zachary who came up with the idea. But once Marsha [Marsha Garces, Williams’ former wife] and I heard it, we said it was great.”
Williams received charity from the late actor Christopher Reeve while the two were students at Juilliard. “Him being such a great friend to me at Juilliard, literally feeding me because I don't think I literally had money for food or my student loan hadn't come in yet, and he would share his food with me,” Williams responded when asked what his best memory of Reeve was. “And then later after the accident, just seeing him beaming and just, seeing what he meant to so many people.”
If Williams could have been an animal, he would have been a dolphin. “Just their abilities, how social they are, how sexual they are, how intelligent they are, mainly how social they are,” he wrote.
Were “Jumanji” a real game, Williams would totally partake. “The idea of a survival adventure on that level, with more solving problems versus run and gun, it would [be] exciting.”
Williams had advice for someone going through a difficult time. “Reach out to friends. They're out there. And know that you are loved.”
His “recipe for success.” “Truly loving what you do,” he wrote. “Because there will be good days and bad days.”
Williams ended his 2013 “ask me anything” Reddit thread with a thank you to those who participated. “This has really been a lot of fun. And saved me a lot of therapy time,” he wrote. “I hope to come back.”