Man Who Commits Suicide at Harvard Leaves 1,905 Page Suicide Note Online

From the Cambridge Chronicle:

A Somerville man not affiliated with Harvard University fatally shot himself in the yard this past Saturday at about 10:50 a.m., authorities said. No foul play is suspected.

The Harvard Crimson identified the man as 35-year-old Somerville resident Mitchell Heisman who posted a 1,905-page document on, a website he created, arguing history, politics, religion and death. His mother reportedly told the Crimson to publish his name to let people know of his work “because that’s what he wanted.” She said he worked on his book in Harvard libraries and from his Craigie Street home. She also told the Crimson he seemed happy to be finishing his work.

Friend Jared Nathanson said he and about 400 others received an automated e-mail from Heisman on Sept. 18 at 4 p.m. containing a link to his site with the book attached. “Several of us wrote responses trying to dissuade him, not knowing it was too late,” he said. “I am deeply saddened and surprised by his death.”

The incident took place at about 11 a.m. Sept. 18 when Harvard Police received a call about a shooting outside Memorial Church, and responded to find a man with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his head, lying in a pool of blood. A silver revolver was found near the body, and a bullet was found lodged in a nearby column, according to the police report.

I tried reading some of it. It really could have used an abstract.

My relentless pursuit of the guy who robbed me

From Salon:

The day before had been magical — a beautiful, warm, sunny fall Sunday in San Francisco. We lingered in the city too long but still had to buy groceries on our way home from an exhibit of watercolors and drawings from “Where the Wild Things Are.” As we pulled into our driveway, I said to my husband, “I’ll run in and start dinner. You bring in the bags.” And that’s the last thing I remember. The next morning, the glove compartment was open, papers hanging out. The GPS was gone.

I canceled four credit cards and ordered a new BlackBerry before I thought to check Craigslist. I didn’t know what I’d find, but it occurred to me that pawn shops were the domain of desperate crackheads and that the savvy modern thief would hock stolen wares online. I did a search in a 40-mile radius of my neighborhood. My GPS was the first thing that popped up.

To be honest, I wasn’t certain that Garmin Nuvi 265w was my GPS; I didn’t remember the model number. For all I knew this was some poor schmuck who’d fallen on hard times trying to get a little cash. Still, it was awfully suspicious. It was the only Garmin on Craigslist that morning. And the entire ad was written in capital letters, as if that particular seller were jumping up and down, trying to get my attention.

My hands shook as I tapped out what I hoped was a casual e-mail query: “Hi!! I could TOTALLY use a GPS. Is this one still available? Where are you located? Thanks!!! Jasmine.”