Today at work, they pulled us aside in little groups to tell us the bad news -- my friend and co-worker Ben White died last night. He was 25.
We still don't know how. He wasn't ailing; there was no accident; aside from smoking he was in relatively good health. He just went to the bathroom and didn't come back.
Ben was a fellow geek; here at the office, he was One Of Us. He played Magic, used to play Dark Sun and had just gotten himself hooked on "Firefly". He was always a stand-up guy, mild-mannered and smart and great for sharing a laugh or a conversation about politics or just talking about stupid crap. He was fair and kind.
He was One Of Us.
I've known him for quite a while, as he used to buy his cards at my FLGS, when I worked there. I just had breakfast with him at the quarterly meeting on Tuesday -- all of us office nerds sat together and ate those awful instant scrambled eggs.
A damn shame. It was out of nowhere, man, just -- gone.
Ben, Manaboy...I'll miss you, me heartie.