|I've just today received the news that Nathan Hawking has died, and I want to take a moment to post a few words.
First, I had no idea that Nathan was near 60. From his posting persona, and the photo he put up here, I had always assumed that he was much younger, and closer to my own age.
Second, it is no secret that Nathan Hawking and I were online adversaries (something I regret to a certain degree). Nathan and I had a very contentious relationship in listland. This was mainly due to his posting behavior on NB's list (which I administer), but carried over into a number of other discussion groups as well (including this one). I found Nathan's posting persona to be excruciatingly stubborn, pretentious, ill-informed, and primarily guided by a desire to "make trouble". In short, I thought most of Nathan's ideas were silly, and I didn't like him much as a poster.
Still, one's existence, one's *life* in this world can not (and ought not) be minimally judged by a short time of irritating behavior on internet discussion lists. None of us are fully recognized or known from our online discussions, and despite my well-documented dislike of Nathan's posting persona, I for one, have no problem in expressing my deep and genuine sadness at Nathan's recent passing.
*Life* is a dear, precious thing, and the loss of it is almost always a tragedy, as it certainly is with Mr. Nathan Hawking.
Rest in Peace.