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They Will Be Missed
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"The good die first,
And those whose hearts are dry as summer dust,
Burn to the socket!"

--William Wordsworth

During the past few weeks two of my favorite bloggers have died suddenly and unexpectedly. Jim Lawrence and Rhubarb (Sarah Smith) were both exceptionally intelligent, vital, enthusiastic and active. Why are such people the ones to go before their times? I've never been very religious but given what I have observed during my lifetime I am prepared to believe that there is an active, purposeful evil at work in the world.

If Jim were here to comment I suspect he would urge a more rational view. Often he posted comments here that were more interesting and more sensible than the entry which had prompted them. Sarah might be more inclined to my viewpoint. She shared my apprehension that there are beings walking about who seem to lack any inner humanity.

Of course since they were both creative thinkers I am probably completely wrong in imagining what their reactions would be.

I'll miss Jim's excursions into Rhode Island history, his vivid anecdotes about youthful adventures and his accounts of running and road racing. I envied him continuing to run. It was an activity I loved for a short time until back problems put a stop to it. Now I won't be able to experience the sport even vicariously through his writing.

Nor will I be able to read Sarah's well reasoned cries of outrage about the failings of our society, the same ones that enrage me but which, frankly, I don't have the stomach to write about myself. She also wrote fascinating reminiscences of her years in the Peace Corps and, by contrast, also chronicled the simple joys of daily minutiae.

Their journals were too wide ranging to sum up. If you haven't read them give yourself a treat, go to their sites and dip in.

I'm not going to attempt to write tributes. I consider tributes mostly futile, and I didn't know either Jim or Sarah personally anyway. Plenty of people who did know them will miss them. Jim wrote a lot about his family and Sarah about her UU "family." What terrible losses they have suffered.

In their very last entries Jim anticipated competing in a triathlon and Sarah was planning to write her memoirs. If only we could all reach the ends of our lives while still looking forward to the future. But not so prematurely.

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