I'm pretty sure that's all him...
He's who contacted me for the silhouette art and all, and we had a few funny PMs back and forth about it all.
This has kinda stuck in my head all damn day, you know? I didn't know him super well and we weren't exactly cut from the same cloth, but he was always very cool and friendly with me. He answered some technical questions on a few occasions, passed along a cool little insider nugget (that allowed me to make a smarter purchase and save quite a bit of money) and liked my silly Aldo Nova silhouette enough to actually do something with it, which I thought was funny as could be.
"Man, I was just goofing around..."
"Yeah, but it's cool as hell! Can you send me the Illustrator file because I want to put it on coasters and stuff!"
Maybe it's the age thing? Maybe it's just the fact that you come somewhere on a daily basis, and some people just become fixtures and old, reliable pieces to the mix...and then, out of the blue, they're gone?
For someone I didn't know all that well, this has eaten at me for a good 10 or so hours now.
It drives a few things home, no doubt.
thegelding totally had the right idea...hug those kids a little extra tonight, g.
You don't realize the space some people occupy or that you just take for granted "oh yeah, he's around...I'll ask him". Until you can't.
Then you feel a bit robbed and want to offer up a heartfelt "hey, WTF?!? This isn't quite fair...".
And to be HIM, of all people. If there was a figurehead or central character here, I've never thought of it as anyone else other than Jack. I felt like, ultimately, if I ever got HIS ear on something - a suggestion, idea, etc. - it had a good shot of getting implemented.
We had a few good-natured sparring rounds over "lifestyle" issues, and one of the things I said to him several months back was "man, be careful. You're not invincible!" after one of his particularly spirited "this is what I've got planned for next weekend!" posts, and he went on to assure me it was all cool and under control, and I never thought another thing of it.
He always called me an "old man", especially if I was on a good "people piss me off with their loud music and rude public behavior!" rant.
"This is what it's like to get old, folks...".
Just a weird, downer day, all this.