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Legends

Robin Williams’ bit about the Scots inventing golf has resurfaced and it’s still the greatest thing ever

September 07, 2023

It’s hard to believe it’s been nine years since Robin Williams passed away at the age of 63. He left behind a legacy of laughter (and acting chops—watch ‘Insomnia’ if you haven’t) that may never be matched. Of all the classic Robin characters and bits, however, this tiny little footnote on his resume might be our favorite. Judging by the reaction to it surfacing again this week, we’re not alone.

OK, so he gets a few little details wrong. It’s the Irish that are known for Guinness and bowling and croquet were both invented after the advent of an 18-hole round of golf in 1764. But let’s not get pedantic. The rest of Williams’ bit is a knee-slapper. In less than 90 seconds, he whittles the game down to bare essence, highlighting the inherent absurdity of the hobby we know, love and, yes, sometimes even hate. Most importantly, though, he makes us laugh along the way.

Williams, unlike peers Bill Murray and Norm Macdonald (also RIP), wasn’t much of golfer himself but he clearly grasped its simple pleasures and unique torments. If that isn’t comedy in a nutshell, we don’t know what is.