Seems that Anthony Bourdain was way more popular than I had realised. There's a really major outpouring of grief and upset at his death underway.
I didn't mind him, but wasn't his greatest fan. I thought Kitchen Confidential was a bit over-rated, but it certainly did serve as a (perhaps inadvertent) warning (as was Ratatouille, now that I think of it) to any young adult interested in a career as a chef that a good proportion of their fellow careerists will be crazy. (It seems that before his book, there was no clear understanding in the public mind as to just how crazy the profession could be.) And I do tend to worry about memoirs which talk too cheerfully about the dissolute days of youth spent under the effects of copious amounts of drugs - they can work as an inadvertent advertisement for experimentation, as well as miss the perspective of other people who had to put up with them at that time.
His TV persona was generally likeable, and he did go to interesting places, even if the food there wasn't always appetizing. But I still had my reservations (pun unintended): perhaps he came across as a bit too cheerful and relentlessly convivial at times; rather like some comedians, that can cause me to wonder whether some of it is a front.
Still, yeah, it's sad.
Update: Gee, in reaction to Bourdain's suicide, Zack Beauchamp at Vox has written one of the clearest and best optimistic takes on depression and overcoming it that I have ever read, based on his personal experience. Maybe it should be prescribed reading for all teenagers....