Grave let the TRDMB author community know on Tuesday night that while his life is good, he just has too many other concerns right now to devote the kind of time required to maintain the magisterial presence he had on TRDMB.
I first encountered GravediggerHebner on the other site where so many of TRDMB’s authors and commenters did their minor league work before being called up to The Show. My first thought those years ago was “what a great name!” I remembered Richie Hebner as a Met; and I sure remembered his offseason grave digging—this Grave guy must be cool!
What I discovered was someone of a very similar age, with similar tastes in sports, music, movies, culture, and even some politics. Many a late-night during and after a Met game saw Matt Cerrone’s comment page turn into a running debate between me, Grave, Rusty, Fong, and Haz about great bassists, top movies, and yeah, a little about the Mets too.
Grave joined those of us who helped found this haven for the serious fan who loves the Orange and Blue. As one of the most admired commenters at the old place, he certainly came into his own as one of this site’s—and indeed of all of the Met blogging world’s—very best writers and observers. His postgame wraps were often cited elsewhere, and definitely made me smile after many of the terrible, lackluster losses the team rewarded us with the last two years.
Stories of his such as the multi-part report on trading stars for prospects graced our pages; they were fit for SI or The Sporting News.
Grave was always a true gentleman—always respectful, yet firm and authoritative; he would defend his position with wisdom and grace when debating but never resorted to the lesser types of responses that so many of us often fall victim to utilizing.
As he leaves us for other things, we can only feel that our loss most clearly is other things’ gain.
I was privileged to know Grave for years in the Met blogosphere, and had some very nice email exchanges with him. He referred to me as a “kindred spirit” and this is a compliment I treasure.
Like many of you, I really will miss him. He was one of the folks who truly made this a better place, both as an author and as a commenter. I can sincerely say, without the false or exaggerated praise that often mars pieces such as this, that when Grave weighed in on a topic in the comment area, it really was like one of those EF Hutton moments—people really did stop and listen; you never knew what you might miss in terms of wisdom imparted, myths busted with facts and research, or a gloriously funny turn of phrase.
Grave, if you are reading this, please accept my very best wishes for your future, and please come by and say hello when you feel the time is right. I think I can safely speak for probably everyone in our close-knit online Met community in saying that you will be missed; on a deep and regular basis. When I write pieces, I really do think “WWGD” and try to create something you would enjoy; your comments praising an opinion piece of mine were words that definitely made me happy.
May life present you with all of the wonderful things you deserve.
And another damn Met playoff appearance would be cool too.