I just heard that Tim Russert died, probably of a heart attack. He was only 58 years old. I wanted to pay him my respects because his was the only show that I would watch not because of the guests who were to appear, but rather because he was the interlocutor. I always found him thoughtful and interesting, hard in his questions, but kind in his person. I don’t remember him ever saying anything just for the sake of apperaing to seem smart. He seemed the kind of common man who was a natural and unpretentious human being; quietly proud of having made his way, always with gratitude to those who helped and sacrificed on his behalf, especially his father. He loved his father and was grateful to him because he did his duty (and then some), never whined, and didn’t participate in that now common fake introspection that our most visible public citizens favor. Although he was a Democrat, he was of the old fashioned sort, the one who I always felt perfectly comfortable with. He, and they, loved his country not only because it was his own, but because it allowed him to come up to the level of equality that the Harvard types thought was their entitlement. I never got the sense that Russert thought he was entitled to anything, but he appreciated to have the opportunity to do things he loved. He seemed to me to have more smarts and a better character than the rest of his fellow talking heads combined. I will miss him and my good wishes are with his family. R.I.P.