Zachary Jacobi

Zachary Jacobi was my favourite person in the world from sometime in early 2015 until the day they died. Remembering how excellent Zach was is a very poor substitute for having them in my life, but it’s the best I’ve got.

Photograph of Zachary Jacobi and I, wearing matching outfits. I am kissing Zach's cheek and they are grinning.

This is my favourite photo of the two of us. I wish we'd taken more photos together.

Writing about Zach

what I said at Zach's funeral on August 16, 2019.

I hope that each of you, at some point in your life, gets an opportunity to experience something like what Zach and I had.

A year without you
what I wrote on August 7, 2020, the first anniversary of Zach’s death.

I love you. I wish I had more to show for it. I wish there were more of you left in the world to love.

In the future there will be no one like you
an essay I started before Zach died, with a title that meant something different by the time I finished it on August 7, 2022.

If I examined the worry underneath all my more flattering concerns, I suspect I’d have found this: what if there aren’t people like you in the future?

Photograph of Zachary Jacobi and I, at a protein engineering conference. Zach's arm is around my shoulder but, like, in a friend way.

This photo is from a one-day protein engineering conference that we accidentally attended together. This was before we were dating. We each, separately, downloaded this photograph to our laptops with an unsupicious title; mine was 'brotein.jpg'.

Zach's writing

Zach wrote over a million words in the time they were alive, many of them on their blog, Socratic Form Microscopy. In retrospect, it’s kind of ridiculous how many ideas they were generating every week.

You can find a few other traces of Zach on the internet, if you’re curious. They wrote around 100 reviews and collected some quotes on Goodreads, though the Book Review tag on their blog are a much more substantial picture of what they were reading. Zach had taken the Giving What We Can pledge, and there is an Against Malaria Foundation fundraiser in their name.

Soft black and white photograph of Zachary Jacobi looking at the camera, with a flower crown in their hair. They are smiling wide.

From one of my parties in Waterloo, the year Zach and I started dating. I've always thought of this photo as capturing what Zach looked like when I was falling in love with them.

Other Zach-related pages

Elephant-aversary: an annual tradition of putting elephants in strange places, which celebrates the most metaphorically resonant moment of my life with Zach.

Alert Labs memorial page: a page created by Zach’s friends and colleagues

Photograph of Zachary Jacobi, a mid-20s person in a baseball cap, marvelling at something outside of the frame.

This is the best photo I ever took of Zach.