As nearly everyone has noticed, 2016 has been a tough year for celebrities. The list of famous people who have passed away in this calendar year is remarkable, and we've had two more in recent days -- George Michael and Carrie Fisher.
Some of the performers in question have been moribund for a long time -- Michael hadn't released anything of note for years, to use just one example. An aphorism often credited to Charles de Gaulle -- "the graveyards of France are filled with indispensable men" -- rings true. We don't get to keep everyone. It's also a reminder that we are all on the same general path, although our individual trajectories vary widely, and for a lot of us who valued the lives lost in this year, we are forced to think, if only briefly, about our own mortality. If you are, as I am, over the age of 50, it's quite reasonable to assume you are playing the back nine. We mourn for many reasons.