R.I.P Spalding Gray

It’s been confirmed that his body was found in the East River. http://www.cnn.com/2004/SHOWBIZ/Movies/03/08/obit.gray.ap/index.html

At least his family can go on with their lives now. The other shoe has finally dropped.

Damn it!

I’m glad he was found. But I hate that he’s dead.

I’d been expecting this would happen when the weather turned warmer. It’s been really creepy to think of him under the East River every day, all this time.

Always liked him. What a damn mess.

Damn shame. I saw Swimming to Cambodia again last week, I never have been able to pin down what it was that made him so compelling as a monologist. I guess that was part of what made him brilliant.

Just curious - does the East River freeze over? I wouldn’t have thought so.

In Chicago, our river only freezes over briefly. Of course, that may be due to all the lovely pollutants and human waste we add to it.

Or are there other reasons you would expect a body to pop up when the temps warm?

Inquiring (and morbid) minds want to know!

Oh yeah. Only saw SG once, but I definitely believed he added flavor to life. No one else does exactly what he did so well.

What a shame.

I remember hanging out with a bunch of friends one night, several years back. We were flipping through the channels when we stumbled across Swimming to Cambodia, and we were all nearly instantly riveted. No one even suggested changing the channel.

In a world of carefully-manufactured super-celebrities, he was one star I’d have loved to have coffee with.

What a shame.

I’d heard of Spalding Gray years before I’d ever seen any of his work. The first film of his that I saw was Gray’s Anatomy. In it, Gray recounts discovering that one of his eyes was going bad, and because of his fears of the medical establishment, he did everything but go to the doctor. (He eventually did, but not for some time afterwards.)

At the time I saw it, I was incredibly ill and none of the doctors I’d been to had been able to figure out what was wrong with me (other than the fact that I was sick). Considering that my illness was nearly completely incapacitating me at times, I was unnerved, to say the least. So when I saw Gray’s Anatomy, with Spalding freaking out over a “minor” eye problem, I was instantly hooked. His recounting of going to the “faithhealer,” had me rolling on the floor with laughter. When he described calling up the Christian Scientists and talking to them about the “error” only to hang up and state that now he remembered why he was no longer a Christian Scientist reminded me of my own conversations with my family about my illness.

Gray kept me going when it seemed that all was lost. I owe him for that.

Yes; gasses trapped in the tissues make the body lighter and more bouyant. These gasses are produced after death; warmth will cause them to be produced more rapidly.

Do I have to go on?

I just found out three to five minutes ago. I was sitting at the computer (where else?) and on the phone with my insurance company, making my payment by check. Hit the CNN homepage, saw the headline. Insurance person didn’t ask why my voice broke while I was giving my policy number.

:::heavy sigh:::

May he know peace. As for his family, well, I guess this is a point to start the healing process.

This makes me very sad.

Famous people never really seem to go out in the best fashion, but this one seems truly tragic.

I had the opportunity to meet Spalding Gray about 12 years ago on his Monster in A Box tour. He was a soft-spoken man, very gentle. There was definitely a quiet intensity to him. I specifically remember him commenting that Eugene (the town where he was performing) had beautiful clouds.

Think I’ll go read Monster in A Box tonight. :frowning:

Am I the only one who found him really kinda sexy? “The thinking woman’s Brad Pitt.” Now I find out he started in porn films, but it would be too ooky to rent one now . . .

Almost any man with such intelligent wit is sexy as far as I am concerned.

I loved Spalding Gray, ever since I saw Swimming to Cambodia in 1987. I subsequently read and re-read the book version, which included other excellent monologues, and was hooked. Then followed the book versions of Gray’s Anatomy and Monster in a Box. I never got to see any of the films though.

One of the many scenes that stick in my mind from ‘Swimming’ - even though it is years since I read it - is the bit where he has a ‘perfect moment’ in the sea in Thailand. Remembering this, and thinking that he chose drowning as his way out brings a lump to my throat.

Goodbye Spalding.

Hello, I know we’re fighting ignorance here, so… could someone fight my ignorance, and tell me who Spalding Gray was… :confused: I can surmise a little from context, but I am intrigued as to whom everyone is talking about. Could someone please enlighten me?

Mr Gray had a small part in the movie, ‘the killing fields.’ He turned his experiences in the making of this move into a monologue type play. Just Gray sitting behind a desk and talking about his life and thoughts about all the normal life experiences of people. The monolgue was ‘swimming to cambodia’ and the other ‘grays anatomy’ was about his eye problems. Very hard to describe, but for lack of a better explanitation, a thinking mans version of Jerry Sinfield.

If you can rent ‘swimming…’ It’s really good. My words do not do it justice.

Here’s Spalding Gray’s imdb.com entry. I noticed that they’ve not updated it yet. :frowning:

Swimming to Cambodia
Monster in a Box
Gray’s Anatomy

Not at all.

I rather like his idea for his epitaph - “An American Original: Troubled, Inner-Directed and Cannot Type.”

Depression claims another victim. :frowning:

I saw him do Gray’s Anatomy, back in 1995 or so. Got to meet him afterwards.

Before and after the show he was clearly aggravated; just after he sat down to start his monologue, he complained that an air conditioner was going that hadn’t been going during his sound check, and made them turn it off before he would start. (It wasn’t that loud.) When I spoke to him after the show, he really didn’t talk back. I think he was just having a bad night–I know he had been on the road for a bit.

Still, it didn’t affect his performance, which was captivating. I loved the fact that he just sat there and talked for two hours, twisting and turning in and out of his story, not always funny and not always profound, but never once losing the audience. I’ll never forget it.

Dr. J