Since news of Parks and Recreation writer and producer Harris Wittels’s death first broke yesterday, condolences and tributes have poured in all over the internet. Amy Poehler spoke lovingly about Wittels at an event in Beverly Hills last night. Today, Aziz Ansari took to Tumblr to express his remembrances in the way he knows best — through comedy.
Ansari opened with a touching note about his missing Wittels:
There are so few people that you meet in life that give you that feeling that you’ve found a real unique, original person. Harris Wittels was one of those and we lost him yesterday. He was 30 years old. I’ve been devastated.
I’m still waiting for the other phone call to let me know that Harris is okay and this was all a horrible misunderstanding. I don’t know when my brain is going to be able to process the terrible feeling that fills my heart with dread and my eyes with tears every 20 seconds when I realize this very special person is really gone.
So, I wanted to write something to share my stories about Harris and what he meant to me.
After reminiscing about his and Wittels’s ongoing collaboration through Parks and Recreation, two unrealized movies, and stand-up comedy, Ansari let loose with a few stories about Wittels’s brazenly honest sense of humor.
From the deceased’s involvement in a favorite Funny Or Die skit:
Remember the Obama-Galifianakis Funny or Die video?
Galifianakis: So are you gonna run a third time?
Obama: I don’t think that’d be a very good idea. That’d be like making a third Hangover movie.
I thought that was by far the best joke in that thing and maybe any thing I watched last year. I found out today that it was a Wittels original. Of course.
To an email sent to practically everyone at NBC regarding a mandatory workplace harassment meeting:
It seems Wittels had a creative, comedic hand in just about everything, and Ansari is going to miss that (among many other things) about his departed friend. The comedian concluded the Tumblr post with a heartfelt goodbye to his former partner in crime:
Bye Harris. I miss you and I’m glad I got to enjoy your genuinely amazing and original presence. I wish I got to you know even more. I hope people reading this realize what a incredibly unique man you were, and what brutal a loss it is for those who knew you and also for those who never had the pleasure. This has been so hard to write because I just keep wanting to add more and more stories and more jokes and more everything, but I’d never be able to finish it. You are far too special to sum up in any kind of piece like this. You were one of the best and we all will miss you.
All the feels.
(Via Aziz Ansari)