The end of Billy Connely's stand-up career has hit me particularly hard, in a way that I never really expected.
I always liked Connolly's standup for the same reason everyone else in the world does, he's a natural storyteller. He would never be the first name on my personal list of history's greatest comedians, but he's always been a solid top 10, and have seen many of his best routines many, many times.
He was always such a lively and vibrant performer, full of life, always there, always absolutely fuckin' brilliant because he's the best 'guy in a pub telling you some crazy story' anybody ever heard. So cheerful and astute and loud.
And now that's all done. The health problems might not be as bad as the tabloid press made out, but Connolly has had to give up the stand-up and live shows.
And I think I'm more bothered by it than Billy is. He's hanging out in Florida, living out his days on the American swamp, and getting everything out of life he can. But the knowledge that this beautiful mad fool, owning the fucking stage, can only be found in fuzzy old videos anymore, is properly heartbreaking.