I was lucky enough to be at my college when Kurt Vonnegut spent a year there as a visiting writer/ lecturer. Vonnegut himself marveled at how long he lived given his chain smoking habit. He used to sit on the library stairs smoking cigarettes at 7 am. He gave a lecture and ended it by instructing everyone to ask a question of the person sitting behind you, and then walked off the stage. He was a fascinating human being and the American cultural landscape will suffer for the loss. So it goes.