July 3: C.J.: A vanilla Robin Williams makes teen’s day at DQ

  • Article by: C.J. , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 11, 2014 - 7:19 PM
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On top of having a vanilla cone, Robin Williams posed with Abby Albers at a Dairy Queen in Lindstrom, Minn. He was in Minnesota for a visit to Hazelden.

Abby Albers thought my question about whether Robin Williams was the most famous person she’d ever served at the Lindstrom Dairy Queen was pretty funny.

“He’s the only famous person,” the teenager said, laughing, when I interviewed her Tuesday. Celebrities aren’t always dropping in on her at work? “No,” she laughed.

Around “9:30 on Sunday night,” Williams dropped by the DQ where Albers has worked for about a year. “He was friendly. He took pictures with us [which she posted on Facebook]. He had a small vanilla cone.”

What incredible restraint, said a member of the MEdia who usually leaves DQ with TWO chili cheese dogs.

As a result of a prank pulled on me a few years ago by a Williams look- and sound-alike, Minnesota sightings of this celebrity always make me nervous and suspicious.

“I’m almost positive” it was the Oscar winner and stand-up comedy genius, Albers said.

My concerns were assuaged by an AP story later from LA quoting Williams’ publicist Mara Buxbaum as saying Williams was in Minnesota to get essentially a 12-step program tuneup. Buxbaum told AP that Williams was “taking the opportunity to fine-tune and focus on his continued commitment, of which he remains extremely proud.”

“Williams has been open about the challenges of maintaining sobriety. He sought treatment in 2006 when he relapsed and returned to drinking after 20 years,” wrote the AP, noting that Williams starred in the May movie “Angriest Man in Brooklyn” and “has several other projects in the works, including another installment of ‘Night at the Museum.’ ” Williams’ CBS series, “The Crazy Ones,” has been canceled.

Before I interviewed Abby, her dad, Mike Albers, wanted a few words with me, some of which expressed how he was “a little unnerved” by then-unconfirmed online reports that Williams was in the area for treatment. (And I’m guessing a tuneup is different from treatment.)

“We don’t know why he’s here,” said Abby’s dad, noting that he didn’t think the distance between Hazelden and the Dairy Queen was “walking distance,” as TMZ stated.

By the way, Williams arrived at DQ in a car.

I assured Mike Albers that I hear about celebrities and their children being at Hazelden all the time and, as a matter of personal policy, don’t write about that part of the sighting until they’ve been quoted about it in, say, People magazine. Mike is also befuddled by various media entities reprinting the photo of Abby with Robin without asking permission. Mike said I am the only person to whom he has given permission to use the photo.

Understandably, Mike Albers is also miffed by hateful remarks directed at his 15-year-old daughter on social media. The behavior is a reminder that social media is maturing at a more rapid rate than many of its users.

Nuptials by Joan?

Jason Matheson is certainly going to try to get Joan Rivers to officiate his September wedding to Collin Haas.

Matheson had Rivers on his MyTalkFM107.1 morning show Friday to discuss her latest book, “Diary of a Mad Diva,” and current tensions with various celebrities who can’t take a joke.

Forgive him if these are not exactly the words aired and repeated in a promo the station made out of this part of his entertaining interview with Rivers.

“I made a joke. I said ‘Every time you’re on the show, Joan, I ask you to marry me. Will you marry me?’ ” said Matheson, who also reminded Rivers that he’s “as gay as a ‘Golden Girls’ reunion.’ She said, No, but I’ll marry you. I said, ‘Joan you shouldn’t have said that! I’m actually getting married in September.’ She goes, I’ll be there! I thought, ‘Shut UP!”

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