Tumblr just suggested a site that had a link to Mitch Hedberg quotes (go laugh here!) which made me think about Mitch. I didn't know him personally and never even got a chance to see him perform live. But for some reason, I felt a connection to him -- you know, the way people feel like they 'know' the celebrities on TV?
Maybe it's the wounded-bird lover in me. Maybe he was too similar to people in my own life. But when he died, I was intensely sad. And if I think about it too much, I get misty-eyed. It's been 5 years since he passed away and it still stings. Maybe that's weird, to mourn for a stranger who I only knew through TV and radio.
Thankfully, he left a legacy of comedy, which is one of the better contributions to the world, if you ask me. One of my favorite jokes (0:16 via the video below) is about an escalator and when he passed away one of his fans made an image of Mitch ascending to the pearly gates via escalator (image above). I bought Ryan a t-shirt with this on it and whenever he wears it, strangers come up to him. They pat his shoulder, with a sad look, and say how they love Mitch too. It's really odd the power that this one, semi-obscure comedian had on so many people. I'm just grateful that he did.