What is an E. Paxson, you are asking. An E. Paxson is a human being and a friend, so far only on Facebook but qualifying as ‘friend’ in the best sense of the word regardless, which is, for me, someone who gives a damn, who notices, and is thoughtful. If that someone is also good with words, it’s extra. And so, here is a bit of that extra, several Paxson-isms, shared with the writer’s permission.

On Facebook:

“FB friendship: a new form of human relation. New vistas for philosophy and psychology; there’s a treasure trove of PhD theses here. Here are the people I work with every day, those I met last week and those I knew when I was a kid. Those I love, and those I’ve never met. People I knew and lost and rediscovered. People I met here and have come to meet in ‘real’ life. All of you neatly alphabetized, posting about the ridiculously sublime and the sublimely ridiculous. Here I learn, laugh and cry, and get to know you and share your life a bit. And of course out there are some of my close friends who, by their FB absence, help define FB-ness as well. FB: like.”

On the big question:

“Perhaps there is afterlife, reincarnation or nothingness. Perhaps tomorrow someone or some event will call you to account. But right this moment, you, the sum of the wiles and weaknesses that equate you, can act as you please. This then is the freedom of the human condition. You are absolutely free, even if you do not have absolute freedom.”

Finally, something simpler, but equally universal:

“Les nuits blanches, quand on rêve
On est son propre démon
Qui se tourmente sans trêve
Sans trouver satisfaction.

When one dreams, a sleepless night
His own demon he becomes
To torment without respite
Yet no problem overcomes.”

And yet is uplifting to read. Thank you, Edwin.

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