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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Sod it..... Lets Get Morbid!


I didn't know Annie Woolf at all bar what she presented to us on her blog.

Don't get angry about this but it's like a celebrity such as Princess Diana dying (I hope Anna is chuckling away wondering where this analogy leads). We saw Diana from afar - more in publications and perhaps TV than anything. Few got to meet her. Fewer still got to speak with her. And yet when she was killed, we were affected. We felt connected by the fact that we saw something in her that we had in common. I'm not sure what it was - she seemed a most singular woman to me - yet she never failed to make an impact.

Annie Woolf has managed to achieve a bit of that as well.

I learned of her death by the blogosphere. That nebulous mass of people who, somehow believe, that people want to read what they write. Or write for the hell of it. Or any manner of reason. And that is the thing that I had in common with her.

Her life (and death) are worlds away from mine. Apart from some basic trivialities such as we are currently living in New Zealand and English appears to be our first language (after a few drinks, I suspect it becomes my fifth!), we had little else in common.

Now she has died and the only thing that strikes me is: today Anna died and someday I will die too. People have been busy leaving messages and posts about Anna on Not PC's site. Predictably, the mood is sombre and reflective. Sad that Anna has gone and the common thread is missing a stitch.

Today wasn't an everyday occurrence. And suddenly we all feel a wee bit vulnerable. Cause the other thing we have in common is going to happen too. You know, the "D" thing. Bugger. On the flip side, though, probably not today.

And that is Anna's legacy to us. For over a year, she shared with us what was happening to her all the while  still railing against the same things we, as bloggers, do: life, love, politics and bad food. All  said with grace, charm and delicious wit and all the while adding her comments on her Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma like it was a normal everyday occurrence.

But thats the point. Anna talked about it in the midst of strident comment and invective thrown around at Kiwiblog or prickly, acid commentary at Cactus Kate. Ranting madness at Whoar or barracking over at the Standard. All the things we bloggers go on about. All the while someone was dying.

Anna's death binds our community. This is a good thing. Like Diana's death perhaps. I know all the bloggers at the Cavalier tonight are finding out that we have more in common than an internet connection and a willingness to expose our thoughts.

So next time bloggers you're about to go ape on someone that has annoyed you or are about to get personal, take a moment to think about Anna Woolf. Someone who was facing the biggest and baddest challenge that all of us will face. Remember her grace and style in the face of the fact that she wouldn't be writing her blog the next day. Then remember how lucky you are to have the opportunity to do what we do.

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