May be the last

This may be my last blog post.  My health has taken a turn for the worse and I’m in the ‘end of life’ phase now.  The chemo was miserable and so I reviewed my decision to continue with more medical interventions and chose not too.  I was also too weak to continue with the chemo in a straightforward way.  Instead I am on a regime designed to make me comfortable.

I’m quite weak now.  I’ve had another wonderful flood of messages from colleagues friends, and relations of caring and loving.  There have been some great ones that have recalled times that the person sending the message and I have spent together.  One I just received from an old, old friend brought back the kitchen that we decorated in a house that we lived in in the 1980’s where we took lots of time and care over mock malachite and mock lapis lazuli painted units. I loved that kitchen – and hadn’t thought about it for 20 years!

Gill and I also rummaged in the loft and found my nostalgia boxes which included diaries from my year in Kenya in 1978-9.  Maybe there is another blog project there – ‘Adam’s year in Kenya’.  We still have to discover what else the boxes contain.

Even typing feels like a draining activity now; Gill, my wife, has been helping.  Don’t count on me responding to email or skype – which I find a strange thing to say after a quarter century of being assiduous in email correspondence and having short shrift for people who lamely say “I never got the email”.

I’m not sure how to end a post that might or might not be the last.  I am at peace.  If I have more days with sufficient energy there may be more.  Perhaps that is all that is needed.

Adam

 

 

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Adam Kilgarriff

I'm a scientist who has set up and runs a small company. I'm married (to Gill Lamden) with three children, Boris (22), Maddie (18) and Raffie (9) (as at today, 28 January 2015, in case I forget to update!) We live in Brighton, UK. Last November (2014) I found I had bowel cancer (stage 5; not curable; only 'manageable'). We've been adjusting to that since (and it is what provoked me to start the blog) My scientific area is linguistics, with my specialisms being corpus linguistics, computational linguistics, and lexicography - or, best of all, the intersection of all three. Since 2004, my company, Lexical Computing Ltd., has been providing a web service, the Sketch Engine, to linguists and lexicographers wanting to find out about words, using corpus-driven methods. Customers include Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Collins, Macmillan, Le Robert, Dictionary.com and around a hundred universities worldwide.

48 thoughts on “May be the last”

  1. Glad to hear you feel at peace Adam.

    And that you are enjoying all sorts of memories. On which note – remember that wet, wet walking holiday we went on in Scotland? Starting in a downpour at the Fisherman’s Mission in Mallaig, plodding on in the rain carrying such heavy, sodden rucksacks, and then finding that wee bothy where we could shelter for a night? I think the sun may even have come out briefly!
    And crossing the Alps? Where I ran away from the scary cows and left you to face them? Might not have always seemed like it at the time, but they were good times!

    You must have so many memories to think back on – all those different bits of your life. Enjoy time travelling into the past a little more.

    Thanks for all those adventures Adam – it has been great to have done them with you. Who knows. Maybe see you on the other side one day ….

    Lots of love to you Adam, and to all your family.
    Kate xxx

  2. Dearest Adam,
    I don’t know which words to say, and I am not sure that words are what I need at all to express my feelings now. Except for one thing I would like to say: after discovering in a post of some friends of yours a few months ago that you love hiking, I decided to train even harder for my next climb in summer, the majestic and awe-inspiring Matterhorn. This climb will be dedicated to you, and I am sure, when I will be up there, above everything, I will feel even closer to you than I can be now. You need to wait, Adam. And you will be the first one to hear my report…
    Lots of love to you and your wonderful family,
    Laura

  3. Hi Adam,

    You are a wonderful person and a role model for me as a scientist, for the way in which you follow your path without going after the latest fad, while staying open-minded. And I Don’t Believe in Word Senses will forever be in the top-5 of best papers ever written about polysemy.

    We didn’t spend much time together, but I’ll cherish the memories: the conspiratorial web-as-corpus meeting in Forlì, having beer with your dad in Bolzano, the little sandwiches in Vienna…

    Hope we’ll meet again.

    Love,

    Marco

  4. It is a terrible piece of news, Adam. Unbelievably sad. You are teaching us how to keep heart, courage, dignity, humour and feelings in the deepest despair. Hope you are wrong about your health, my dear Adam… we want to keep on reading your blog posts… They are interesting and funny and profound. Your writing style is beautiful. It is simple and special at the same time. It is a pleasure to read both your academic production and your personal thoughts. Hope you you will keep on writing for us. A tight and warm hug.

  5. Dear Adam
    I heard from Michael that things were not going so well and was very sorry to hear it. I like the sound of what you’ve been doing, and the name you’ve given your boxes — I might borrow it, if you don’t mind, as I am a hoarder…
    I so appreciate and admire what you have achieved with Sketch Engine and other innovations, and I have enjoyed your company — I remember a rather odd dinner in Bolzano at Euralex, with a surly Russian waitress, and another which was jolly — and of course your entertaining, thought-provoking presentations.
    I hope the next bit can be as comfortable as possible, and that you have time to explore your boxes and enjoy your family and friends. We will be thinking of you.
    Megan

  6. We have hit a lovely stretch of weather here in Duluth – the days are getting longer, the sun is quite bright, and the birds start singing around 5am, which is to me a wonderful way to wake. Fortunately I have always been an early riser, otherwise I might like it a bit less. And in related news, the bear who was ravaging our bird feeding operation has apparently found another stomping ground, so our feeders have been spared, at least for the moment.

    I found myself thinking about CICLING 2003, in Mexico City. I particularly remember the soccer match that you proposed if I’m not mistaken (and yes, I call it soccer even though I know better, old habits and all) – and as I recall you might have also led the expedition to seek out some adult refreshments and then as you returned of course the police appeared from absolutely nowhere (like genies it seemed). I didn’t play – I begged out due to my shoes and who knows what other reason, but I remember how nice it was to stand in the sun and watch the shadows play across that grassy dusty bumpy field, with the mountains off in the distance…

    And I was able to find a photo from that very afternoon – not sure if I wrote the html right … I hope it works…
    title=”soccer in mexico city”>

    I do admire the grace you show. I need to learn from that…

    Warmly,
    Ted

    1. That football match, yes! and the dog then ate teh ball! Thanks so much also for the photo – plus I have been enjoying your Lake Superior nature updates
      Love Adam

      1. I remember it too, with popacatapetl exploding just behind us! It was the first holiday you took me on, and one of the best! I remember that wood full of butterflies, and teotihuacan, the ancient temple city where they have just discovered a burial chamber 200 feet underground!

        Do you remember arriving in Mexico and buying some donuts because I demanded it, and then going to a playground. You pushing me on the swings is one of my earliest memories.

      2. Oh my, yes, the dog!!!! I laughed out loud as I read your note – I had forgotten by yes, my goodness … The dog that chewed up the soccer ball at what became the end of the match! See? That’s what Magical Realism is all about. It sounds a bit like a small episode in a Gabriel Garcia Marquez novel, or better yet a film by Cantinflas. What a fun afternoon that was. :)

        Here are a few more photos from that afternoon – you’re usually pretty close to the ball – that day only the dog was quicker. :)

        more photos from Mexico City soccer/futbol/football

  7. Dear Adam Kilgarriff,

    Marco told me about your cancer. I am very sorry that it struck you so young, although I am glad that you are surrounded, “flooded” as you put it, by the love of your family and friends.

    This sounds totally out of place, but I would also like to thank you for your contributions to linguistics and computational linguistics, I’m also a big fan of I Don’t Believe in Word Senses.

    Best regards,

    Gemma.

  8. Hi Adam,

    I have been following your blog for a while. I have happy memories of my time knowing you, especially playing unihoc together. You are a right terrier! One of my overriding memories is my dribbling the puck and you chasing me with your chin essentially resting on my arm! Always tenacious, eh?

    I hope things go as smoothly as they can.

    Take care, Adam.

    ])arren.

  9. Dear Adam, and of course, dear Gill and all of you,

    I do not think an hour goes by without my thinking of you, your bravery and honesty in these difficult days. We send you all our love and hope that the peace you feel lasts, and is something we all can live up to. I doubt we will manage as well as you have.

    Love
    Cathy

  10. Dear Adam,

    Without a doubt, the moment shared with you I most vividly remember is… that football match we saw at the pub in Murcia, Chelsea vs Barcelona at Champions League semifinal, surrounded by fans of Barcelona FC at the pub, and you and me quietly supporting Chelsea, though for entirely different reasons. And that cliffhanger, that Iniesta goal in the last minute. That was really a special moment. I will always remember that. I will also remember many other nice things about you. You are great linguist and a great friend.

    But that football match at the pub… I will always remember that moment.

    With all the love.
    Moisés

  11. Dear Adam,

    I forgot to add one more important thing: my research over last five years would not have been possible without SketchEngine. I also have to thank you for that. You’ve done great things. And you’ve been a great friend. I am thankful to you for many things. Will always be. Always.

    Moisés

  12. Dear Adam,

    Your dignity is truly an inspiration and is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I felt very humble when we were with you at the weekend and extremely privileged to be able to spend some brief moments with you at this exhausting time.

    Over the past months in particular you have taught me so much about the value of the little things in life and of the beauty of giving. You have also taught me lots about the science of Linguistics although I’m still not totally sure that I understand what you do! A conversation for another time.

    Do you remember one of the first times we met? It was Corfu in 1980 and parents and I found you and Gill by the roadside by pure accident! That week of chatting about your work with rehabilitated prisoners whilst we swam in a clear – cold – turquoise sea under a cloudless sky is a precious memory. So too are all those Christmas’ where turkey awaited your return from your good works at ‘Crisis’. More precious memories.

    We’ll look after Harambee so that the contribution you made to those lives will live on.

    May peace stay with you as you leave us all behind..and remember the request I made of you to let us all know you’re safe. Somehow !

    Paula

  13. Adam,

    We met only briefly at the Galtur lexicom. You certainly impressed as a Renaissance man … so many talents and interests. And the Wacky Wednesday afternoon our group spent that week, climbing mountains and finding a tavern. I have a photo of you on a motorcycle carved out of wood.
    I thought of you a few days ago when I read about a project in the British Library … preserving and maintaining access to the UK web domain.
    Adam, a man of grace and wisdom, peace and serenity. I hope you are comfortable. Great that you are surrounded with love. May the memories give comfort to you and your family. Many of us are with you on your journey.
    Denise

  14. Dear Adam, thank you for your testify.
    Even if we met “in real” just once in Lyon a few years ago, I’ll keep a place for you in my mind. I’ll be pleased to meet you again in another life, if there is one.

  15. Hi Adam,
    Sue and I were exploring a corpus made by uploading the URLs of a website to WebBootCat today and just loved the way any concordance line had the clickable link directly to the page in question – Sketch Engine is a work of genius and is a fantastic gift to the corpus research community. Thank you so much for that and for your generosity and patience in training people to use it. Thank you also for sharing your journey with us in this blog, it’s humbling and inspirational. God bless you.

  16. Adam,

    I’ve been following your blog since I heard about you again in the aftermath of that old photo that was sent round to some of our group of former DPhil students. I’ve been meaning for sometime to send you a longer message than the brief one or two that I have done so far, and given your latest blog entry, I won’t delay that any longer. I’m so sorry to hear of the recent worsening of your condition; it is difficult to know what to say, but I’ll try to add something worthwhile to the no doubt numerous messages that you’ve been receiving from people far and wide.

    I cannot say of course that I knew you particularly closely, and had heard nothing of you for many years until that photo was sent out, although I’ve been in tenuous and intermittent contact with some of the others, having seen Anthony, Pedro, Lynne, Dave P., and Rob G. within the last five or six years. But I remember you as a very nice and smart fellow-student, part of that diverse but harmonious bunch of DPhil students that we were, sharing a room together. I hope you still have happy memories of that time some 25 years or more ago now, which was a good time for all of us, I think. When Anthony was on sabbatical at the University of Kent in 2009, I picked him up and drove him over to meet Lynne and visit D421, not long before the Arts D building was demolished, and although we couldn’t go inside, as it was locked, we took a photo outside the door.

    I cannot adequately imagine what it’s like to be in your situation, or the stress and worry that you and your family must have endured over the past months — however long it has been since your illness, and its seriousness, became evident. But one day sooner or later when a similar situation comes to me, I will certainly be reminded of the example that you provide, and of the courage and dignity with which you have faced and discussed your situation. What shine through from your blog are your decency and empathy, your keen intelligence and curiosity about the world, and your deep and scholarly fascination with language and its use. Your thoughts on language and your wisdom about life are inspiring and stimulating, and what you’ve done with the Sketch Engine is an amazing testament to what can be achieved by someone with dedication, enthusiasm, and drive.

    Like all your correspondents, whether close friends and family, or more distant acquaintances such as me, I wish I could do more for you than offer my sympathy and best wishes to you and your family. It is good to read that you feel at peace, and I just hope that in the time that lies ahead, you have as little discomfort and pain, and as much solace, kindness, and support from all those close around you, as is possible in the circumstances. Kind regards,

    Chris Taylor

  17. Hi Adam

    Thanks for sharing your story. I’m full of admiration for your fortitude and good humour. You’ll be in my thoughts, and I’m sure memories will keep surfacing of the 20+ years I’ve known you. Just now the stand-out memory is your talk at a Computational Semantics workshop entitled “Ten things my lot hate about your lot”, if I remember right. I think at the time I likened you to a lion in a den of Daniels (no slur intended on anyone actually called Daniel).

    all best

    Rodger

  18. Hi Adam,

    I regret not having contacted you since hearing of your illness – which seems so recent. I enjoyed our meetings over the past few years, and particularly the time you and Boris visited our project in Aberystwyth a few years ago now. If I remember correctly, you took advantage of that visit to do some hiking afterwards. I’ve always been a great admirer of the Sketch Engine and have publicized it whenever I could. I just regret that we have so far been unable to use it with our data – but I look forward to the day when we can.

    Your posts have been uplifting – if that it the right word in the circumstances – and I admire the way you have dealt with this difficult period. I wish you and your family all the best and thank you for your help, friendship, and advice.

    Andrew

  19. Adam,

    That time in Auckland when you nearly missed the ferry to the Waiheke island – the ferry was about to depart when you came running with a briefcase under your arm!

    We are both thinking of you very much.

    Sending a hug,
    Dana

  20. It’s not fair. I can’t but feel it’s not fair. We heard about You and Your decision from Ilan who came to Tallinn yesterday. We talked about You, thought about You. Glad You’ve made peace. Lots of love to You, Adam.

  21. Dear Adam,

    Your experience is ringing close to home for me as we are “battling” with our own cancer with Simon (just diagnosed and operated a month ago). I was hoping to read many more of your blog entries. Anyway, I am glad I have known you, and be able to be in touch again after that many years, albeit due to this f**ing illness.
    I hope you feel no fear and are receiving plenty of love. From many miles away I am also sending you lots of warmth, hugs and love.
    Nedjet

  22. My old school friend.
    We rather lost touch during our university years and apart from the odd meeting in a pub in the Old Town (was it the Anchor or the Olde Pump House, the Stag, the Trader, or even the Nellie?) during vacations we just fell into our respective furrows and followed our own paths for nearly 30 years. Then 5 years ago you hit the big Five Oh and somehow I made it to a party at your lovely home in Brighton, where we rekindled our friendship over a bottle of fine single malt whisky.
    Only a reluctant consumer of social media, harrassed into usership by my off-spring, I missed a Facebook message from one of our other close friends from school-days last November telling me you weren’t so well. I eventually got the news earlier this year and we had a memorable few hours in Brighton a couple of weeks later, which inevitably included a visit to a pub where we supped on some of Harveys’ finest ale. It made me proud to see your post on the Grammar of Farting which, I fancy, came out of our (very earnest) discussions during the bracing walk back to your house afterwards; it’s important to get to the bottom of the really important things in life!
    And then you gave me the precious gift of renewing friendships with nearly all of our closest friends of our youth, bound together from our secondary-school days by youth hostelling holidays and membership of Hasting & Bexhill Rugby Club Colts, by asking me to join you and them for a curry after the annual Hastings half-marathon, in which you and they had competed for many years – unlike you, I was never built for long-distance running.
    We all live multi-faceted lives and it’s obvious how much you have meant to so many people from the love and respect expressed on this blog; I just want to add to that.
    You tried patiently to explain what your Sketch Engine is and how it works during the car journey back from Hastings to Brighton after the curry but I’m not a linguistics scientist and, although the words made sense at the time, I’m not sure I really got it. However I do understand that it is something of significance and importance to lots of other people and it was always obvious you would achieve many significant things, including lasting friendships with those who know you.
    Be at peace my friend.

  23. Those of us who live on the same block of this street as Gill and Adam are blessed with some of the best neighbours once could imagine. I am sad that we will be losing one all too soon. As a neighbour, I have been privileged to read Adam’s account of his final journey and the warm comments of his many friends.

    Adam is probably too much the scientist to believe in karma, but if there is another turn of the eternal circle awaiting him he’ll be OK as he seems to have lived a good and full life. The Buddha taught that there is no beginning to the repeating cycle of birth, life and death but that it can be ended through perceiving reality. Curious that perceiving reality is the goal of the scientist as well as the mystic.

    Songs have figured in this blog, some from a religious context. Here’s part of another one:

    But when He calls me I will be able
    To meet my family at God’s table
    I’ll meet my mother, my father
    My sister, my brother
    No more an orphan girl

    Blessed Saviour make me willing
    Walk beside me until I’m with them
    Be my mother, my father
    My sister, my brother
    I am an orphan girl
    I am an orphan girl

    ‘bye, Adam; it was good to know you

  24. Dear Adam

    One seldom has the chance to say a proper goodbye to friends who are dying, and it feels a privilege to have the chance to do so on this blog. Not one of the new technology benefits that I’d have anticipated, but a very real one.

    35 years of friendship won’t sum up into a few lines, but I have very happy memories of the dinners, the walks, the arguments, the fun, and the company. And what more can any of us ask for, than to feel at peace at the end of our lives ? At that point, as Hamlet says, the rest is silence.

    Goodbye, with love from us all

    Martin and family

  25. Dear Adam
    “Exuberant irreverence” returns an empty result in enTenTen, but not in our book for you. Irreverance for received ideas political and linguistic, for “that’s impossible”.
    Turning the page of our North Laine calendar this morning brought the Pavilion Music Room and memories of almost 30 years of friendship streaming into the apartment with the sun. On topics-including-but-not-limited-to sushi and shellfish for (early) breakfast at Tsukiji fish market.
    Masumi reminds me that without your signature we would not be legally wed in Japan. Thanks for this, your generosity, the fun.
    Stay serene. Our love to you, Gill, the kids.
    Tony & Masumi

  26. Dear Adam,

    I hope that this was not your last blog post, and that this is not my last message to you. But if it is, then it is good that you can meet this time with such calm and good humor. I hope I will be able to be that way when it is my time.

    I always love to give my students your paper “I don’t believe in word senses” to read, because it characterizes the problem of polysemy so well but also because it is simply fun to read, in a way that few papers are.

    Since reading Marco’s message above, I have the song “We’ll meet again” stuck in my ear. The Johnny Cash version — which is about the happiest song he has done.

    We’ll meet again, some sunny day.

    Best wishes,
    Katrin

  27. Hi Adam

    So sad to hear that the latest chemo was not the help that we hoped it might be. I was irrationally optimistic about it too. You have been such a good support to me since I had my own diagnosis last year and it seems totally wrong and unfair that you should be at this point now..
    Looking back I realise how much I’ve appreciated your voice – so rich and grounded, with its own dark melody, always ready to break into humour. The times I remember most vividly were evenings in your kitchen with pepper steak, calvados, and your stream of ideas about all the things that we could do and how we could do everything better. And then walking back home under the stars to Moulsecoomb in a very happy state.

    Missing you
    David

  28. dear adam,

    i have been following your blog during my parental leave – usually, at night when the others were sleeping – and often ended up in tears of laughter, anxiety and sadness. your posts were heartfelt, as were many of the comments, and touched life – in the truest sense(s) of the word.
    we met through science, and even though science, at times, seems so far away in these posts the inspirational sparks, the profound discussions i remember are there as well – just now with a new-born next door and you writing about approaching the ‘end of life’ phase.
    thank you, and god – in all possible senses – bless you and your loved ones.

    i hope we meet again,
    love,
    egon

  29. Dear Adam,

    Thank you for your friendship and for your kind consideration for a late-age lexicographer at Lexicom in St Petersburg. You gave me a new career and a new lease on life. I am eternally grateful.

    Sincerely,
    Geoff Toister

  30. Dear Adam

    I am not a digital native – it seems odd to communicate in this way. But I am so grateful for the blog, and for the way you and Gill have allowed us to be with you, and this is the quickest way to say that. We are thinking of you all.

    With Love

    Eve

  31. Dear Adam,

    I’m thinking of you in these difficult moments. I’m glad I got to know you during my year in Brighton as a very caring husband and father, dedicated scientist and ambitious sportsmen. I remember for example my first time on a tennis court with you and Raffie. My stay with you gave me inside into another ‘world’ and way of seeing and doing things which I will always appreciate. As strange as it sounds but I’m glad I have the chance to say it this way – Good bye, Adam.

    Love, Bettina

  32. Dear Adam

    I am so very sorry to read this “maybe the last” post. I hope it is not the last, but I think you are right to spend your precious time with your family and memories and not typing. I can also understand that you don’t want to risk wasting time on further unpleasant medical interventions. It is a very tough decision. You may not recall it, but I first met you in 1989 when you were lab demonstrating as a PhD student and I was an MSc student dabbling with computers for the first time. The first time we really got chatting was in my first year of my PhD (that was 1996 after an interlude working in various jobs in “the real world”: you in lexicography and me in various AI companies). For my PhD, I was building selectional preference models for diathesis alternation detection and got hit by the polysemy question which is when you came cycling over from ITRI to Sussex to try and help wise me up. You have always had such a refreshing take on everything, even and perhaps especially when it flies in the face of current practice. I just want to say how much I gained from all our correspondence, friendship and collaborations over the years, and from those very very happy few years working for you at LCL. I met so many wonderful people and gained so many new experiences and it would not have happened without you. Thank you.

    with love, and warm memories

    Diana

  33. Adam,

    Our thoughts are with you and your family and hope you have a calm and restful period.

    I remember the first weeks we had moved into the street and your generous invitation to your fun and exuberant 50th birthday it really was a lovely welcome to the street. We enjoyed the champions league nights with a Guinness and
    throwing the boys back and forth over the wall for a play.

    I send this to you with all our love.

  34. You are loved by all who meet you and know you. I DON’T BELIEVE IN WORD SENSES Adam. What does mean “alive”, when without love, most of us are dead but breathing.

    Lips scalded by love’s tongues of flame
    Can never taste death’s bitter pain

    Love
    Maryam

  35. Hello Adam,

    You have been a true inspiration, always available, humble, helpful, encouraging, and I am always grateful to you. I wish there were more of your species around; you are truly a rare person.

    I think so often that we, as individuals, live a life independent of ourselves in the minds of others. In this sense, I wish I could live as you live in my mind.

    Thanks for everything!

  36. “Many words have more than one meaning. When a person understands a sentence with an ambiguous word in it, that understanding is built on the basis of just one of the meanings. So, as some part of the human language understanding process, the appropriate meaning has been chosen from the range of possibilities.”

    The above is from Adam’s paper entitled ‘I Don’t Believe In Word Senses’ referred to in other posts here. I haven’t read it yet but the above passage caught my eye. I have attempted several times to read ‘Seven Types of Ambiguity’ by William Empson which (I think) seeks to explain one way that poetry works. If there is an afterlife perhaps Adam and William will meet up and have much to talk about.

  37. Dear Adam

    I am so sorry to have to be writing this note, but at the same time I am grateful for the opportunity to express my thoughts to you. My thoughts are a mixture of the personal and the professional. At OUP I have worked with you and LCL over many years; you helped us bring corpus linguistics to life for our lexicographers, and many of our insights into language are made possible by SketchEngine and the tools you created. I am conscious of all that I learned from you and your team over the years, and I know that Oxford Dictionaries are better as a result. Thank you for all that, and congratulations on all that you have done.

    And I remember all the personal exchanges and time we have spent together, in the OUP offices, at conferences, and – from time to time – in Brighton. Your enthusiasm, intelligence, and warmth coupled with your pragmatic combination of academic and business interests are how I remember those times. One early memory is fixed in my mind. It must have been sometime in the early 1990s. I was a very junior editor, meeting some of the great and the good in the world of lexicography for the first time. Sitting near to Sue Atkins, she leaned across at the start of a talk you were giving at a Euralex conference talk and she said (I paraphrase), ‘This guy, Adam, he’s very young, but very good, you know; watch out for him’.

    Indeed.

    Take care in these days. All kind wishes to you and the family from all your friends at OUP.

    Judy

  38. Dear Adam

    We are really sorry to hear that the illness has taken such a high toll on you already. It is very difficult to find comforting or cheering words for such a moment, but we wanted to express our deepest appreciation for you.
    We learnt much from you regarding corpora and computational lexicography. You will always be a reference for us, and having the chance of meeting you was a great honour.

    We hope that you are comfortable and you can enjoy as much time as possible with your beloved ones. We will eagerly wait for your next post, as we are sure there will be more of them.

    Sincerely yours,
    Your colleagues from Elhuyar: Igor, Antton, Xabier, Willy, Maddalen, Iker, Eli and Iñaki.

  39. Dear Adam
    just to let you know that I am very happy to have met you, that I enjoyed your corpora-list postings very much,
    and that I feel that conferences without your critical voice, always challenging authorities and “truths”, will never be the same….

    Thank you for your personality and your work, which was great and has left its mark!

    I use the “Man and Superman” (Bernard Shaw) cup that you brought as a gift to our home daily, and will not forget you. I remember the dinner in Rio where we exchanged “references”: you told me about Wittgenstein, I told you about Whorf…

    I just wanted to tell you that you mattered also to me, if that matters at all when you are leaving us. But I hope it does, to read / hear that you have been significant. Thank you!
    Diana

  40. Adam, I wish I had treated you to a beer or something when we last met in Instanbul.

    You are at peace and I hope some comfort. You have always been one of my role models and you always will be. I haven’t caught up.

    Best,
    Daniel

  41. Dear Adam,
    I am so sorry to read your last post:-( Thank you for all your contribution in the KELLY-project! For all it is worth I am praying for you and your family.
    all the best
    Maryam

  42. Dear Adam,

    I just wanted to send you lots of love — you are in my prayers.

    Dan

  43. Adam, I so fondly remember our meetings at conferences around the world, from a tiny squashed pub in Japan to a side-walk cafe in Malta. Your boundless energy and enthusiasm always made those trips so much more fun. I think you still owe me a drink, though.

  44. Thinking of you Adam, and your family, each day. I am grateful for your generosity in sharing your thoughts and wisdom in this last phase of your life. Grateful too for your contributions to our understanding of words, and helping me apply this in my own work.

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