Over the last twenty or so years, I have changed several email addresses. Not too many — less than my postal addresses, in fact. It’s not a big deal. My old email addresses could be found in some papers that I authored, although I seriously doubt anyone will ever bother to check their validity. In any case, my readers had a few years to ask their questions. Now the shop is closed. I moved on. Emails happily bounce back.
But when a person dies and his or her email is still active — that by some reason freaks me out. That felt weird twenty years ago, that still feels weird today. Inbox full of unread emails. Creepy.
Now, with everyone connected by social networks, it feels weirder still. Yeah, let’s all write “R.I.P.” on the deceased’s Facebook wall, that will help.
Death of a friend. That emptiness left behind. Do we have to fill it with worthless words?