Thursday, September 22, 2005

Belated Note On Bob Denver aka Maynard G. Krebs

Image hosted by Photobucket.comAs some know, television legend Bob Denver died September 6 after a struggle with cancer. His death was obscured by the necessary coverage of the post-Katrina disaster.

Denver was famous for his role as Gilligan, the hapless, bumbling but sincere crew member of the doomed sailboat, "Minnow." Gilligan, along with six other shpwrecked shipmates, spent several years on "Gilligan's Isle," somehow able to be marooned and yet watched by millions of TV fans at the same time.

For me, however, Denver was never really Gilligan (who apparently did not have a first name....unless Gilligan was his first name....then again, he might have had a first name....). No, for me Bob Denver was and will always be Maynard G. Krebs, beatnik sidekick and friend to Dobie Gillis.

Maynard's empty-headed, drop-out incarnation of 'cool' left an indelible impression on me.

From Maynard I learned the art of satire.

From Maynard I learned that even nice guys can be complete idiots and that complete idiots can be nice guys.

From Maynard I was later able to understand that hippies were more often than not, simply empty-headed, drop-out beatniks on drugs but without the 'cool.'

From Maynard I learned that, in contrast to Dobie, there is more to life than girls.

From Maynard I learned that trying to grow a beard without good facial hair was something that belonged only on a TV comedy series.

From Maynard I learned that going to school, studying hard and continuing on through college was the best possible way of avoiding turning out like Maynard.

From Maynard I learned that, if Dobie and Maynard could be friends, then I could be friends with just about anybody!

From Maynard I learned that, if I ever had a son, I would never name him Maynard.

Bob made me smile. You helped me to "grow up" and gave me genuine insight into the adolescent and adult world I was preparing to enter.

Bob Denver.....all evidence to the contrary, you never set sail on the "Minnow;" you never were stranded on a desert island; you were never rescued and returned to the civilized world; you were never Gilligan.

Bob were Maynard G. Krebs. You are Maynard G. Krebs. You will always be Maynard G. Krebs. You will always wear the baggy torn sweatshirt; you will always carry your bongos; and you will always, eternally shriek whenever you hear the word, "work."

I have no need to say "farewell".....because you have never left.