• Sal Parikh

Bob Saget - A Walking Contradiction


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Why did the death of someone I never met affect me so much? Maybe it was because unlike Betty White and Sidney Poitier, he still had more laughs to bestow upon us and no (excuse my language) fucks to give. I remember being bummed out the next day because a part of my childhood was gathering around the TV to watch dorky but wholesome, Danny Tanner, being a Dad to his young daughters. Of course, there was America’s Funniest Home Videos and the relatable moments caught on camera to his comedic timing. Then I also recalled the other version of Bob Saget that always stopped us in our tracks. It was his transformation to one of the most raunchy and filthy comics. Just YouTube “Bob Saget The Aristocrats” if you want to catch an example of this. Also check out his standups That Ain’t Right and Zero to Sixty for a bigger taste of his comedy style. The duality of these personalities and how he saved space for these two seemingly split personas is what always fascinated me. He was a walking contradiction, an enigma, and you just couldn’t put a neat bow around Bob Saget.

A few days after his death, I watched an Instagram live story of comedian Jeff Ross and musician John Mayer drive his Prius home from LAX and that’s when the loss of Bob Saget really hit me. It was in that moment and seeing two men from completely different backgrounds and crafts that I really let the moment to sink in. While on one hand, Bob Saget was this hilarious and dirty comic but also a wholesome family man on TV, there actually was one constant thru it all. And that when you dig a little deeper you start to realize that constant pattern emerges. Whether it be someone he just met, wife Kelly Rizzo, or a lifelong friend like John Stamos; Bob Saget was the most kind, generous, empathetic man who never missed a chance to say how much he loved you. And that’s really the point of me writing this.

During the pandemic, Bob Saget started a podcast called Bob Saget’s Here For You. I listened to a few episodes, but the ones that stuck out for were with Jason Sudeikis, Full House daughter Jodie Sweetin, and then his remembrance of friend and fellow comic, Norm MacDonald. There’s also another episode on his podcast with a rabbi, Steve Leder, where they discuss suffering, spirituality, and our journey thru this pandemic.

Take a listen or add it to your playlist here:

It’s an episode I recommend checking out because it addresses the contradictions of life, how to navigate thru these highly uncertain times, and dealing with loved ones passing away. There’s a line from the episode that stuck with me. “Laughter is the subconscious decision to survive. To move forward.” Bob Saget was relentlessly funny but equally as introspective, kind and wore his heart on his sleeve. He never shied away from an opportunity to tell you how much you were loved. I get the sense that a lot of his world view was also shaped by the death of his sister from a debilitating disease called Scleroderma. He used his star power to recruit the likes of Robin Williams and others to raise money and build awareness and never stopped being an advocate until the day of his untimely death.

The point of writing this article is not to make you sadder than you already may be feeling. There is so much crazy stuff going on in the world and so much suffering as it is. The point of this post is maybe we can all take a cue from Bob Saget and live each day with more intentionality and purpose. Bob was an inspiration of how we can all be kinder to one another, live with as much joy as possible, and never miss an opportunity to convey to a person you care about how you feel about them. Also, to be fearless with our humor and not to be afraid to cross that line with a dirty joke because laughter really is synonymous with kindness. And as always, is the best medicine.