The Celebrity Rule of Threes was in full effect this week, with the demise of Darryl Dawkins followed hard upon by the loss of director Wes Craven and neurologist/author Oliver Sacks. And yes, that covers quite a spectrum; it’s hard to imagine two people more outwardly different than Chocolate Thunder and Dr. Sacks. Although…did you know that in his younger days, Oliver (says the AP)
indulged in staggering bouts of pharmacological experimentation, underwent a fierce regimen of bodybuilding at Muscle Beach (for a time he held a California record, after he performed a full squat with 600 pounds across his shoulders), and racked up more than 100,000 leather-clad miles on his motorcycle
So there could be some interesting conversations happening in the waiting room for the afterlife right now. And maybe some feats of strength, assuming you get the body you enjoyed the most in life. (And no, I don’t really believe any of that junk. But it’s fun to think about.)
I don’t know much about Wes Craven. I saw some of his movies; clearly he was a talented person who was dedicated to his craft. And I don’t have the mental bandwidth at the moment to compose a fitting tribute to Dr. Sacks, so I’ll just leave off with some words he wrote in his last days. It’s a pretty good epitaph:
I cannot pretend I am without fear. But my predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved; I have been given much and I have given something in return; I have read and traveled and thought and written. I have had an intercourse with the world, the special intercourse of writers and readers.
Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and adventure.