David Carr has died.
I don't know how to process that sentence. Not yet. Carr was the media columnist for the New York Times. He was a brilliant writer, and a brilliant reporter, and at a moment when the media often seemed to be coming apart, he was one of the few capable of holding it together. He was loved by old media and new media alike. He was one of the few people I couldn't wait to read.
I don't know how to explain exactly who Carr is, or why so many who loved and admired him are so upset tonight. So I'll let him explain himself. This is the bio he gave to students of his Boston University course:
Your professor is a terrible singer and a decent dancer. He is a movie crier but stone-faced in real life. He never laughs even when he is actually amused. He hates suck-ups, people who treat waitresses and cab drivers poorly, and anybody who thinks diversity is just an academic conceit. He is a big sucker for the hard worker and is rarely dazzled by brilliance. He has little patience for people who pretend to ask questions when all they really want to do is make a speech.
Carr, who was 58, reportedly collapsed in the New York Times newsroom. The Times' write-up is here. But the problem is the only write-up I want to read on this is Carr's. Fuck.
David Carr collapsed in the newsroom he loved, doing what he loved, surrounded by those who loved him. RIP pic.twitter.com/gVby5VYsWy— Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) February 13, 2015
remembering David Carr - like Dylan sang of Lenny Bruce: He sure was funny And he sure told the truth And he knew what he was talking about— Philip Gourevitch (@PGourevitch) February 13, 2015
"No one is going to give a damn about your resume; they want to see what you have made with your own little fingers." - Carr— Steve King (@steveking_) February 13, 2015
- "Keep typing until it turns into writing": David Carr's invaluable advice for journalists.