Dick Van Dyke: ''I just kind of went with the flow''

If America has a funny bone, it's Dick Van Dyke. Few have contributed more or inspired as much. Who else has a classic sitcom and a classic musical and seems to be genuinely beloved by everyone he's worked with? To accomplish what Dick Van Dyke has in his life, one would surely need to have a concrete plan, right?

As it turns out, there's a lot more happy happenstance in the Van Dyke story than you'd expect! Back in 2011, while he was promoting his then-new memoir, "My Lucky Life In and Out of Show Business," Dick Van Dyke spoke to the Arizona Republic about many of the surprises that added up to a legendary career.

For starters, all his success as an actor was totally unexpected. Sitcom accomplishments were never really Van Dyke's aim. His career progress was closer to serendipity. He just said "Yes," and kept it moving.

"The more I thought about it, I realized I never had any goals or any point of destination," said Van Dyke. "I thought I was going to be a television announcer, so everything that happened to me was a nice surprise."

That mentality helped shape his memoir, which was never planned for either. Instead, when a publisher approached him, Dick Van Dyke just said "Yes," and figured it out later.

"In life, I just kind of went with the flow, and this is like that. I just went with it," he said.

But while there may not have been a roadmap, there was one key ingredient found in The Dick Van Dyke Show that influenced the rest of Van Dyke's life and career. 

"It was just pure enjoyment," said Van Dyke of his Carl Reiner-penned sitcom, "the most creative enjoyment I've ever had. It was just play. Honestly, I haven't had that many jobs that were really hard work."