I’m with Robin Williams on the golf course, where he insists upon hitting drives with putters and putts with woods. Ostensibly, we’re going to discuss Williams’ new movie, Night at the Museum 2, but the conversation is a narcissist’s dream of a jazzy bebop drum roll.
“Oh, you want to talk about the movie,” Williams says. “Well, too bad, because we’re golfing on the moon. I’m talking holes the size of craters and man I still can’t sink a putt. A putt’s like a sinker, like I’m fishing. I’m fisherman Jack, out on the oceans. Say, there, that’s Moby Dick. Harrr, thar she blows, it’s Jaws and he done blowed up. Who says Jaws is a man? Maybe it’s a woman. Hi, I’m Miss Jaws, sho’ ’nuff, and you best have a J-O-B if you wanna dance with me.”
“How was it working with Ben Stiller?”
“Ben Stiller? He da man. He done gots all da good movies. He’s a short little booger. He’s a midget in a smidgen’s clothing. How’s that go? I’m Ben Stiller and I wear six foot shoe lifts so you can see me. I’m big Ben Stiller and my wife’s hot. In your face. Suck me, I’m Ben Stiller. Why don’t you kiss my ass, I’m Ben Stiller. I don’t care if my movie’s good or not, you’re gonna pay for it ’cause I’m Ben Stiller. I shit on all of you ’cause I’m Ben Stiller. Grrrr, I’m mad ’cause I’m short; I’m Ben Stiller. No matter how much money I make I’ll still be two feet tall because I’m Ben fucking Stiller. Fuck you all; I’m Ben Stiller.”
Williams takes a shot at a putt and knocks it halfway to the next hole. Once again, we’re hoofing it across the fairway. I want to know: Which does he prefer, movies or working live?
“Oh, that’s easy. I’m alive in the movies, so it’s both at the same time. Hi, I’m from San Francisco. I’m a little teapot, short and stout. Look at me, I’m the gay Pillsbury Doughboy. Weeeeeee! I like to swish it when I dish it. I’m the gay rapper Grandmasturbate. I like to walk down the street, yes I do, and when I walk, my shoes are pink and blue, ’cause I’m gay, I’m gay, yes, I’m gay, gay as the long is day.”
I ask him about his great influence, Jonathan Winters. Does he miss him?
“Do I miss him? Waaaaaaa! Oh, my God, I’m gonna weep myself to death. Jesus fucking Christ, why’d you have to mention that? Oh, sweet mother of Jesus Christ, I could stab myself in the heart right now just to have something that would feel worse to compare my suffering to, you son of a bitch. Oh my freaking God, the horror, the horror. Oh, oh – okay. Okay, I’m all right now. Do I miss him? Motherfucker’s dead. He’s old. Who gives a rat’s ass? Why, I’m a rat’s ass, and I like broken glass, and I tiptoe through trash in the evenings. I’m a rat’s ass and my heart beats fast when you drop cookie crumbs in the sewer.”
“Do you,” I mutter, trying not to interrupt, “have anything to say about the movie?”
“Why, yes I do. It’s a startlingly intellectual stroll down the Library of Congress of humanity’s greatest works, an encyclopedic tour de force of philosophical complexity. Do you know Sartre? Yeah, I knows Sartre. Then how come you can’t pronounce his damn name right? You’re no existentialist. Yes, this movie will stun your eyeballs and send you to the moon. I’m talking holes the size of craters and man I still can’t sink a putt. A putt’s like a sinker, like –”