More on Bobby

June 18, 2013 at 2:00 am 1 comment

As I prepare a more formal obituary of Bobby, things keep bobbing up. The incidentals, it might be said.

Bobby at the movies One night in the late eighties Bobby came to see Peter Greenaway’s A Zed and Two Noughts with me. I’m positive I gave all the right warnings first. I’m sure it was his idea to come, not mine. And maybe it would have been alright if the airconditioning hadn’t broken down in the cinema. But it had. I do believe I didn’t get another movie pick with him for ten years.

Bobby’s skin Pauline Gumby scratching his back at Double Bay. There was nothing he wouldn’t give for a backscratch, but Pauline did it because she’s Pauline. And I guess the reason I couldn’t is because I’m not.

Saving lives About 2005 Bobby and I were both in Seoul, he to play in one of his many Far Easts, me to do the Bulletins. I was sick and scared about being sick and scared about complaining about being sick. He listened to my issues, gave me a Bobby cocktail of this and that, ‘take 3 times a day’, and he fixed me. In 2010 when I almost died of DVT, getting to hospital minutes before a ‘catastrophic collapse’ as Jill later told me it is called, I couldn’t help wondering as I lay in ICU, if the reason things seemed to be turning out so much worse was because Doctor Bob wasn’t there.

He didn’t give compliments lightly. He gave no quarter at bridge. If he’d ever had to play his gran he would have crushed her if it were in his power to do so. So, if you won, if he said well done, he meant it. I was on a team once with Bobby, Reiner, Tim, amongst others, and I took a line let’s say 96.5%. The opponent in my seat took the 97% play. I no longer recall whether that was ignorance, bad maths, or a bright idea I had, but what I will never remember was their complete lack of sympathy. Bobby wasn’t there to baby you.

So, two compliments from Bobby. One day at Double Bay he was complaining about how girls play – no idea any more what the details of his discontent were – but I burst out with ‘they are not like that’, to which he replied, ‘Not you, when I talk about girls at bridge I mean the others, you aren’t a girl.’ High praise indeed.

The other was also from Double Bay days. Bobby told me one day that I had to become my own master, I couldn’t keep on being a disciple. A statement which said at least as much about Bobby as it might have about me. I keep wondering what might best sum him up and so far I’d say that’s it.


Entry filed under: history. Tags: .

Bobby Richman died yesterday. The Bermuda Bowl in Bali….shaping up to be a mess.

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Gloria Peston  |  June 18, 2013 at 6:12 am

    Fond memories Cathy…he was a stellar fella xo


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