Substack cometh, and lo it is good. (Pricing)

Nick Barksdale, R.I.P.

My friend Nick Barksdale recently died at the young age of 30. I knew Nick through his YouTube Channel, Study of Antiquity and the Middle Ages. About a year and a half ago Nick wanted people who would talk about paleogenomics, and he found me through the Google machine. I guested several times on his show, and it was a fruitful relationship for both of us.

Because of the nature of video we actually talked a lot more than you got to see in the final edit. Some of it was serious content, but a lot of it was joking and bantering. Nick and I got to know each other a bit, and I really appreciated his passion for history. On his channel he had to speak in plain and simple language, but when he chatted off-camera he really let his nerd side come out. In early August of 2021, we recorded a few shows (Nick liked to bank them and edit them months later), and I assumed he would be in contact in a month or so, as was his usual custom and practice. That didn’t happen, but I thought perhaps he was busy.

Then in November, I was alerted to a new GoFundMe page for Nick. He had been feeling ill already when we were talking, and it turned out that in September he had gone to the hospital to get himself checked out, and they found inflammation in his heart valve. You can read about the whole ordeal that Nick underwent between September and June on his wife’s GoFundMe updates, but I want to note that Nick had turned 30 in June, had a toddler daughter, and another due in December of 2021. Obviously, this was a tragic and trying circumstance for all.

There was an optimistic period in the Spring when Nick started DMing me again on Twitter about his future plans (he had had amputations, and he was thinking about doing a Substack). My last message from him is April 16th. He’s gone now. I will say that off-camera he is what you would expect, a funny and honorable person. As usually occurs when someone has me on he received attacks, but he brushed them off and took me as I was rather than what people asserted about me. He told me privately that I shouldn’t worry, he had my back.

What his passing should remind us is that you never know when you go. Make an impression on those around you while you are here, and cherish your time. Nick left us far too early, and you are no better than he. Whether you believe in a life after (Nick did) or not (I don’t), after you go the world of the living will have your memory, your deeds, to honor you.

4 thoughts on “Nick Barksdale, R.I.P.

  1. Thank you. I was hoping you would do a post regarding Nick, his work and sadly his passing. Well said.

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