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What’s your favourite Robin Williams one-liner?

12 August 2014

10:49 AM

12 August 2014

10:49 AM

Mr S was saddened to hear of the death of Robin Williams — a man who contributed to the gaiety of nations. People wax lyrical about Williams’s ability to inhabit character; but Mr S is more impressed by his turn of phrase. Here are some Mr S’s favourite one liners:

  •  ‘Cricket is basically baseball on valium.
  • Ah, yes, divorce – from the Latin word meaning to rip out a man’s genitals through his wallet.
  • One question for the Royal Family: all that money and no dental hygiene?
  • ‘No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.’
  • ‘What’s right is what’s left if you do everything else wrong.’
  • ‘People say satire is dead. It’s not dead; it’s alive and living in the White House.’
  • ‘Cocaine is God’s way of saying you’re making too much money’
  • ‘In America they really do mythologise people when they die.’
  • ‘I like my wine like my women – ready to pass out.’
  • The only reason Mickey Mouse has four fingers is because he can’t pick up a cheque.’
  • Do you think God gets stoned? I think so… Look at the platypus.’
  • ‘In England, if you commit a crime, the police don’t have a gun and you don’t have a gun. If you commit a crime, the police will say, “Stop, or I’ll say stop again”.’
  • ‘Time is the best teacher, but unfortunately, it kills all of its students.’
  • ‘If it’s the Psychic Network, why do they need a phone number?’
  • ‘Reality: What a concept!’
  • ‘Freud: If it’s not one thing, it’s your mother.’
  • ‘I went to rehab [for alcoholism] in wine country, just to keep my options open.’
  • ‘Being a famous print journalist is like being the best-dressed woman on radio.’
  • ‘Shakespeare said, “Kill all the lawyers.” There were no agents then.’
  • ‘I had sex with a prostitute when I was 21, I was so bad, she gave me a refund.’
  • ‘Politics: “Poli” a Latin word meaning “many”; and “tics” meaning “bloodsucking creatures”.’
  • ‘We Americans, we’re a simple people . . . but piss us off, and we’ll bomb your cities.’
  • ‘The Second Amendment says we have the right to bear arms, not to bear artillery.’
  • ‘I can see it now: Osama bin Laden goes up to the pearly gates where George Washington comes out, starts beating him and is then joined by 70 other members of the Continental Congress. Osama will say, “Hey, wait! Where are my 71 virgins?” And George will reply, “It’s 71 Virginians, you asshole!”‘
  • ‘I had my back waxed once by two women… and at one point they said, “Do you mind if we take a break?”‘

And then, best of all, from the film The Dead Poet’s Society, in which Williams spoke these words:

Avoid the word “very” because it’s lazy. A man is not very tired; he is exhausted. Don’t use very sad, use morose. Language was invented for one reason, boys — to woo women — and in that endeavour, laziness will not do.

Add your favourites below.


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Show comments
  • jack

    A man of infinite jest.

  • Oneliner

    If you were right I’d agree with you

    • pedestrianblogger

      If you agreed with me, you’d be wrong.

  • Gwangi

    The second quote mentioned is deeply ironic and more than a little sad when we learn RW’s divorce payments contributed to his worries and depression.

    Unlike most comedians and actors, Williams did actually write and improvise a lot of his lines BUT he did not write those in the film scripts he read out (with the other actors). Worth remembering that.

    I think Williams was at his best in certain roles which fitted him completely – Good Morning Viet Nam in particular. Mrs Doubtfire? Well, just what WAS that accent? (though it does come from a book written by a Welsh woman). And many other roles were awfully mawkish. He was deeply creepy in Insomnia (great film) and One Hour Photo though.

  • Freedom

    ‘In England, if you commit a crime, the police don’t have a gun and you don’t have a gun. If you commit a crime, the police will say, “Stop, or I’ll say stop again”.’
    That would be funny except it ain’t no joke.

    • Gwangi

      In England, if you don’t commit no real crime but post tweets, emails or messages on Fbook you will be arrested by our target-chasing ploddies for fake crimes.

      • Freedom

        Yes, I’d noticed that. Also ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ may not be sung in public without fear of prosecution. I believe the authorities also have a hang-up about bananas. Indeed, regardless of how the Scots vote, you may soon have to rename your country The Banana Republic of Amputated Britain. (The amputated bit will be sense and respect for freedom, not Scotland.)

        • christopher carr

          I didn’t know that ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ may not be sung in public without fear of prosecution, but I am very glad to hear it.

        • Gwangi

          In the US your freedom of speech is guaranteed. If people state the same here there are sometimes laws that apply: if you use racial words you can get arrested and charged – or if you post the same online on Twitter or Facebook.

          You can also get arrested for harassment for sending 2 emails to someone which THEY say has ’caused them alarm and distress’ – 6000 arrests/convictions per year for that (mostly women getting revenge against their exes).

          I don’t often say this, but in this case, the US is right and the UK is wrong.

          Our precious freedom of speech and expression is being crushed by puritanical politically correct attitudes and an amoral police force keen to up their arrest stats in an era of falling crime – so post something on Twitter or Facebook and wait for the knock at the door…

          Of course, it is EASY to block people on Twitter/Facebook/email and to delete them too – rational unhysterical women like Janet Street-Porter do that. Weak vengeful women call the police and misuse public time and money to get back at men they hate.

  • Damaris Tighe

    Simply “good morning Vietnaaaaam!”. RIP.

  • Pelo Nord

    From Good Morning Vietnam.
    What’s the definition of a lesbian?
    A woman in comfy shoes.

  • Richard Ferguson

    From Good Morning Vietnam:

    “You are in more dire need of a bl*wjob than any white man in history.”

    Marvellous line.

    • Freedom

      Or just vulgar. And why ‘white man’?

      • Richard Ferguson

        Liking Rod Liddle and thinking the above is vulgar suggests a fairly high level of inconsistency. Not understanding the “white man” line suggests that your sense of irony might play out on the lower floors.

        Go on, you can have the last word. You know you want to.

  • Donafugata

    RIP and all that but Robin Williams is a complete turn off.
    I find him insufferable and that’s just his films, what he must have been like in person, especially when coked out of his tree?

  • serialluncher

    Possibly the wittiest American ever. RIP.

    • Freedom

      Cough. I don’t think so.

      • pedestrianblogger

        Garrison Keillor is very droll. Truman Capote, Gore Vidal and Kurt Vonnegut could all turn a phrase. And, we are only talking low culture here. Joseph Epstein might have a hat in the ring.

    • Frank Marker

      Well I think Mark Twain and Will Rogers might trump him there to be honest.

    • christopher carr

      Dorothy Parker

  • ohforheavensake

    On George W. Bush: ‘you got to cut W. some slack. He comes from a family where the smart brother was called Jeb.’

    On Ronald Reagan: ‘Here’s a man who said what would this country be without this great land of ours? What?!? Excuse me Mr. Reagan sir, excuse me sir… In the dictionary under redundant it says: see redundant.’

    They’re good quotes.

    • Kitty MLB

      Oh very good. And slightly off topic but I read ages ago that there was a spot of chemistry between Reagan and Thatcher.. I was rather intrigued, although
      this was probably untrue.

      • Aberrant_Apostrophe

        Mrs. T did have a PhD in Chemistry…

        • Gwangi

          I don’t think so – just a bog standard degree, deary. No doctor she.

          • Aberrant_Apostrophe

            Actually you are right, although she should have but for that fuss when Oxford University refused to grant her an honorary PhD because of what they claimed she had done to Higher Education.

            • Freedom

              Shame on Oxford, then. What a bunch of peasants.

            • doctorseraphicus

              Actually, it was an honorary Doctorate of Civil Law (DCL). Surely nobody is awarded an honorary PhD (or DPhil as they call them in Oxford).

    • Freedom

      No, they’re anti-conservative quotes. Williams was a comedian but — and especially — he was no thinker.

      • M. Wenzl

        So, by implication, GENUINE thought will inevitably lead one to conservatism. Profound.

        • Freedom

          Generally speaking, this is true. Go to the head of the class.

          • M. Wenzl

            ‘Generally speaking’ – so there are exceptions?

            • Freedom

              What do you think? Yes, there are a few exceptions, in the gradations of justice and truth. Not very many, though.

              • M. Wenzl

                I think that it’s good to see that you’ve maintained such a balanced view of affairs..

  • CharlietheChump

    A sad and strange day. I always smile when I think of his broad mouth and beady eye, and wait for the rapid machine gun epithet.

    This morning I started reading a review of his new film in the Guardian, the interviewer perplexed and discomforted by his unwillingness to talk about the movie at all. Then, in the side bar I saw “Robin Williams, suicide” a highlighted link.

    From amusement to shock in a fraction of a second. Tears.

    Off to YouTube to find his stand up gigs as an antidote and prayer.

  • Smithersjones2013

    A unique and irreplaceable talent. The world has lost something precious today. He will be greatly missed.

    RIP Robin Williams, Who knows ‘What Dreams May Come’ to you now?

    More of Williams quotes:

    http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/r/robin_williams.html

  • Terry Field

    WHAT a very sad day – firstly the poor folk dying on the mountain when the gutless West could extract them in a couple of hours if it had the balls, now the news of the death if that Delightful fellow Robin Williams.
    Older men can feel irrelevant and belonging to yesterday. I am a touch older than he was. Makes one think.
    Condolences to his bereft family.
    Life is short.
    So am I.
    That makes it even worse.

  • Kitty MLB

    This was so awfully sad., have seen so many of his films and from a young age. He was such a warm man.. the type where the smile reaches the eyes.
    They do say funny people hide an inner sadness. That to be amusing is the face they
    show the world.
    RIP Robin Williams, you lovely man- hope you find peace.

  • MrsDBliss

    “President Barack Obama led the nation in tribute, releasing a statement which said: “He was one of a kind. He arrived in our lives as an alien – but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry.”
    Obama appears to be make political capital out of his death with reference to him as an alien – linked to the border crisis?

    • Adem Aljo

      Alien is a reference to Mork & Mindy.

      I’m not a fan of Obama, but this takes the biscuit for quasi-schizophrenic 9/11 conspiracy whack-job comments.

      • Chrisso

        It could be ignorance, it could be a pathetic attempt at humour, or as you say, it could be a quasi-schizophrenic 9/11 conspiracy whack-job comment. Whatever the reason for the comment, it brings Mrs Bliss no credit.

        • Aberrant_Apostrophe

          Whatever it was, it was completely out of order.

    • Smithersjones2013

      The alien reference refers to ‘Mork & Mindy’ (look it up!)

      For once Obama’s words were totally appropriate

      • MrsDBliss

        I know he’s referencing Mork and Mindy. My point still stands, particularly as I stated ‘is it me’ indicating I know I could be inferring something that wasn’t there (Read more carefully!).

        • Chrisso

          No, you should read more carefully (!) there is no mention of “is it me” in your post. Even if there were you are still a quasi-schizophrenic 9/11 conspiracy whack-job

          • MrsDBliss

            If you’re going to try and take the high ground I suggest you change your tone. You may well have paint about my opinion but your use of language undermines it.
            I intended to put is it me there, hence my statement and my mistake in referring to it.
            You are quite entitled to your opinion on my views, however I’m afraid that Obama often uses situations like this for his political purposes and I have no respect for the man and deep suspicion of his motives. You can call me as many insults as you like.

            • Chrisso

              As you would see if you can read, and there must be serious doubt about that, I was merely quoting another post, although I completely agree with the sentiment. It is not my problem if you are unaware of the content of your own posts. The fact remains you made a stupid tasteless comment based on nothing more than your own warped opinions and you get all sensitive and hurt when challenged, the hallmarks of a true coward. Your visceral hatred of Obama also says a lot about your fragile psyche.

              • MrsDBliss

                I’ve got no problem with you correcting me when I make a factual mistake, or you disagreeing with me. I’ve even said you can insult me as much as you like. However your use of language does undermine your moral superiority. Now you can write as much as you like in response to that, you can make your responses as florid and dramatic as you like – it just adds to it.

        • CmT1088

          Then why say it at all? And the “is it me” came out in invisible font. But don’t let logic stop your little defensive rant.

          • MrsDBliss

            I think you’ll see that I acknowledge that below. It’s interesting that the people accusing me of God knows what over the comment I made are, many of them, so acidic in their outpourings. As I said to the other commentor, disagree with me by all means. But the manner in which you do it does you know justice at all.
            Now cue further offensive little rants…..

      • Freedom

        No they were not ‘totally appropriate’: he is merely grasping at someone else’s popularity.

    • Freedom

      I don’t think the president has any business commenting on a civilian death with which he has nothing to do.

      • Chrisso

        He is the head of state for God’s sake. That is what they do, speak for the country. So you wouldn’t have him say anything about the children killed by a mad gunman or people killed in a natural disaster either? I would hope a president wouldn’t have much to do with any civilian deaths.

        • Freedom

          As I said, this death is none of his business. He is a citizen like anyone else with respect to R. Williams, and that is all.

          • Chrisso

            It is none of your business either but you have chosen to make comments. To say that the Head of State cannot comment on the death of a well known citizen is just silly beyond words.

            • Freedom

              The silliness is all yours. One can lead a dullard to reason but one can’t make him think.

              • Chrisso

                Was that meant to be inciteful or just a poor excuse for having made an irrational comment? Either way it doesn’t add much. You have never addressed my question on whether it is appropriate for a head of state of any country to comment on the death of a well known citizen in that country. I presume when George Bush praised the actor Christopher Reeve after his death you were equally contemptuous of Bush’s comments.

                • pedestrianblogger

                  When Bush said it, he meant it. When Obama said it, it was because he was told to.

                • Chrisso

                  And your evidence for that is……?

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