MeFite effugas, aka Dan Kaminsky, the sweetest InfoSec guy you could ever know, has died this week. Dan was incredibly giving of his time and knowledge, to MeFi and to the world, and was always around being helpful and making complicated topics easier to understand. He talked about MeFi at DEFCON! He liked us and we (mostly) liked him and I am sorry he is gone.
Hi everyone. I'm here with a heavy heart to let you know that our beloved MovableBookLady has passed away. I heard the sad news from her best friend, Amy, who took the time to send me a thoughtful reply during this difficult time. From Amy: "She very much enjoyed her relationship with all of you! You were a source of laughter and joy to her! Thank you so much for being part of her life!" [more inside]
Early influential political blogger and longtime MeFite Steven den Beste (also as Steven C. Den Beste) has passed away. A former engineer for Qualcomm and a serious anime fan, he was in poor health and mostly homebound for many years. RIP.
I received an incredibly moving package from my secret quonsar Anitanola this past weekend, and I wanted to share its story here. When I opened the box full of beautiful presents wrapped in ribbon, organza, and silvery tissue paper, it also contained a notecard with “read this last” written on its envelope. I set that aside, and instead read the note on top, which you can see here. It reads:
This is lagniappe! I’m downsizing my stashes and this is a share of the notecards. Maybe you’ll write a note or just pass them on or pitch ‘em! AnitaThe package contained an amazing variety of handcrafted and locally-made stationery samples, as well as some charming magnets and art beads. Once I had oohed and ahhed over it all, I obediently opened the sealed envelope last. You can see it here: [front] [back], and here is what it said:
Dear [a fiendish thingy], I’m sorry that this was sent late. Sadly, my mother, Anita Cage, who drew your name in the metafilter “secret santa,” passed away on Monday, Dec 1st, after a long illness. She so appreciated her community of online friends, as she was housebound with considerable mobility issues. Even as she was worsening, however, she was concerned that this reach you, and that I “round out” the package with some locally made artcraft magnets. So I send this as she wished, and on her behalf wish you a fond hello and happy holiday season. [Her son]I was deeply touched that she had made sending these beautiful gifts such a priority under the circumstances, and I emailed her son immediately to tell him so. In our communications, I asked him if he would like for me to post about Anitanola’s passing on metafilter, and he was relieved that I had offered so that he would not have to figure it out himself. He also sent a link to her obituary (found here), for those of you who wish to read it. She lived a long and inspiring life. Given her extraordinary kindness in helping to make my holiday beautiful even as her health was diminishing, I not only wanted to post to let everyone else know about her passing and her generosity, but I wanted to act on the inspiration of her own note to me. I definitely do NOT want to pitch the lovely notecards she sent, and instead I’d like to offer to send them on to any of you who would like to remember her in a tangible way. You can memail me your address, and that way her stash can wend its way around the world to other mefites in Anitanola’s honor. (This offer is open to anyone who wants one, of course, even if you didn’t know her well— I think she would enjoy the idea of these missives going to as many mefites as possible!) I will also be sending this MeTa post to her son at his request, so if you have any stories about her to share, he will see them here. If any of you want to send a message to him directly, let me know and I will be happy to pass it on. Her passion, humor, and wisdom will be missed.
The obituary says Andrew Charles Bullock, but we knew him as Balisong. Rest in peace, Balisong. [more inside]