And we always did…
Robin worked at the Trident Restaurant in Sausalito, California in 1974, 1975, and 1976.
Robin was the first person I met in 1974 when I was hired to work there. He trained me as a busboy. In 1976 the Trident closed for repairs, and we went out looking for work together. On our second day out we were interviewed together (only job interview I’ve had with another person?), and hired to work at the Sausalito Food Company as bus boys.
In 1976 Robin entered the first San Francisco Comedy Competition and came in second to Bill Farley, and Bob Sarlatte came in third. Here is the link to the Bay Area Magazine’s Robin remembrance: BAM Robin Remembrance
In 1977 , while we were working at the Sausalito Food Company, Robin joined an improvization group that was performing nightly for two weeks at Gatsby’s Bar on Caldonia Street in Sausalito. Every night he was amazing, and stood out from the rest of the performers. The second week there a writer (or writers) from the Richard Pryor Show on NBC were sitting at the bar.
The following week Robin was introduced on the Richard Pryor Show as one of the show’s new writers? Shortly thereafter he would become a regular performer on the Richard Pryor Show. (There’s information online that would suggest Robin had already met Richard Pryor at the Comedy Store in Los Angeles? This is curious since Robin was working at the Sausalito Food Company (because he needed a job), and didn’t have a car? But, anything is possible I guess? If it’s online it must be true?
It would appear that Robin was discovered at Gatsbys in Sausalito in 1977. From budding San Francisco comedy talent to writer and performer on NBC television. And, from there….
Illustration by Hilary Slaughter 2014