The legendary chef, author, and television host has passed away at the age of 61 after an apparent suicide. We will remember him as the poetic and inquisitive personality whose shows and expeditions were about so much more than food and culture. Bourdain dared to seek truths about the common human experience.
But in his recent social media posts and interviews, Bourdain gave insight into his darker inclinations. Thoughts of death pervade his language.
"'The agonies of anguish and death.'" In this instagram post from two weeks ago, Bourdain contemplates the painting Medusa by Leonardo Da Vinci with a poem by Percy Shelley. Shelley, one of the most famous of the Romanticists poets, is known for his meditations on life and legacy. He, too, met an untimeley death after drowning at age 29.
"Shelter from the Storm"
In an interview last month with People magazine, Bourdain explained that he would "rather die in the saddle" than retreat into retirement. Indeed, he died while filming an episode of his show.
"No Country For Old Men"
"'Where lies the final harbor, when we unmoor no more,'" Bourdain asked in this quote from Herman Melville on this post from March.
We will, I hope, be judged, eventually by seemingly small, random acts of kindness and sincerity. Spike Lee came through. @AsiaArgento— Anthony Bourdain (@Bourdain) May 22, 2018
"We will, I hope, be judged, eventually by seemingly small, random acts of kindness and sincerity," Bourdain wrote in response to reports that Spike Lee stood up for his girlfriend, Asia Argento, who is a survivor of an attack by Harvey Weinstein.
Another adventure in cretinous .— Anthony Bourdain (@Bourdain) May 20, 2018
I am resolute in my love for Canada. Am coming to truly hate its “news” outlets. https://t.co/wcViLnIlUP
"I am resolute in my love for Canada."
Bourdain will be sorely missed. In these troubling times, we need his spirit now more than ever.