I can't even remember how we came in virtual contact, but it certainly had to be via Pam's House Blend or Shakespeare's Sister blogs.
Aside from his very impressive writing about politics and the media, I always felt honored, and humbled, when he would remember to include me on his yearly emails seeking my "best of" konagod post to be included in his round-up of best posts of the year.
And the amount of effort he put into that endeavor was amazing. He was so supportive of small bloggers who otherwise would not have much, if any, exposure to a large group.
To get a feel for his sense of humor, all you had to do was read his blog header.
Although it wasn't uncommon for him to have lengthy lapses between posts, I had been feeling some uneasiness that he hadn't posted since March of last year. Last weekend I clicked the link to his blog in my blogroll, hoping to see some life, and there was none. At that point I had a premonition that something was seriously awry.
It was just a couple of days later when I received an email from BlueGal with the news. I'm not sure if it makes any sense whatsoever to say that I wasn't surprised, and yet, at the same time, was astonished.
Al/Jon, you were a good man. And you left us way too soon. But it's good to know that your positive energy, which can never die, is swirling around us still.