Adolf Ceska aceska at
Mon Apr 1 03:43:59 EST 2002

BBBBB    EEEEEE   NN   N             ISSN 1188-603X
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BBBBB    EEEEE    NN N N             BOTANICAL
BB   B   EE       NN  NN             ELECTRONIC
BBBBB    EEEEEE   NN   N             NEWS

No. CCLXXXV                          April 1, 2002

aceska at                Victoria, B.C.
 Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2

From: _Galateo_ by Giovanni delle Casa (1596)

[During  the  past  few  years I have attended several botanical
meetings and noticed numerous breaches  of  the  rules  of  eti-
quette.  In  order  to avoid embarrassment in upcoming botanical
meetings (especially BOTANY BC & BotWA), I  have  posted  a  few
excerpts  from  the work of the man who gave us the complete set
of instructions on how to behave. No, his  name  was  not  Emily
Post,  but  Giovanni  delle Casa. In his book _Galateo_, quickly
translated from Italian to numerous other languages, he gave the
basics of etiquette, as we know it today. Check also
for more information, especially on how to take Emily Post for a
hike. -- AC]

Your conduct should not be governed by your own  fancy,  but  in
consideration of the feelings of those whose company you keep...
For  this  reason it is a repulsive habit to touch certain parts
of the body in public, as some people do.

When you have blown your nose, you should not open your handker-
chief and inspect it, as if pearls or rubies had dropped out  of
your skull.

It  is  not  polite  to  scratch yourself when you are seated at
table. You should also take care, as far as you can, not to spit
at mealtimes, but if you must spit,  then  do  it  in  a  decent

It  is  bad  manners  to  clean your teeth with your napkin, and
still worse to do it with your finger...

It is wrong to rinse your mouth and spit out wine in public, and
it is not a polite habit ... to carry your toothpick  either  in
your mouth, like a bird making its nest, or behind your ear...

No one must take off his clothes, especially his lower garments,
in public, that is, in the presence of decent people...

Anyone  who  makes  a  nasty  noise  with  his lips as a sign of
astonishment or disapproval  is  obviously  imitating  something
indecent, and imitations are not far from the truth.

From:  Pekka  Pakarinen,  Department of Ecology and Systematics,
   University of Helsinki, Finland [pekka.pakarinen at]

On January 1st, 2002, ten European countries switched to  common
currency  -  euro - the exchange value of which hovers somewhere
between the US and Canadian dollar.  While  the  banknotes  have
basically the same appearance, each country had a chance to show
something  nationally significant on their metal coins. Cultural
monuments and significant persons are what you would expect, but
what about the botanical content?

Austria presents a floral series of three  mountain  plants  'to
symbolise  a duty to the environment': alpine primrose (_Primula
farinosa_ - 5 cents),  edelweiss  (_Leontopodium  alpinum_  -  2
cents),   and   gentian  (_Gentiana  acaulis_  -  1  cent);  see

Throughout the 1990s the Finnish botanists were able to show  to
a  visitor  (or to a student in the field) a small 50-penny coin
outlining on one side a haircap  moss  (_Polytrichum  commune_).
Probably  this  was  the  first (and last?) time a bryophyte was
illustrated on a coin (Hyvonen 1990). Sad day  for  bryologists:
now   the  Finnish  _Polytrichum_  coin  is  history  -  only  a
collector's item and not a valid money any  more.  Perhaps  this
reflects  the excessive drainage activities as a result of which
paludified forests (with a ground cover of _Sphagnum_  spp.  and
_Polytrichum  commune_)  have  been in many areas transformed to
drier forests.

One circumboreal bog plant, however, made it  to  the  new  euro
series:  cloudberry  (_Rubus  chamaemorus_).  The species is il-
lustrated on the Finnish 2-euro  coin  (same  www  reference  as
above).  Perhaps  this  is  a  thought-out  choice,  because the
utilization of cloudberry in Scandinavia was  already  described
by  Linne  (1737),  reviewed  more  recently e.g. by Rapp et al.
(1993), and a brief note appeared in BEN (Pakarinen  1993)  men-
tioning particularly one of the end products, cloudberry liqueur
_Lakka_,  observed  as  a  rare element also in British Columbia
liquor stores.


Hyvonen,  J.  1990:  Bryophyte  illustrated  on  a  coin.   _The
   Bryologist_ 93: 256.
Linne, Carl von 1737: _Flora Lapponica_. Amsterdam.
Pakarinen,  P. 1993. "LAKKA" from Lapland in B.C. liquor stores.
   BEN # 54, May 17, 1993.
Rapp, K., Naess, S.K. & Swartz, H.J. 1993: Commercialization  of
   the  cloudberry  (_Rubus chamaemorus_ L.) in Norway. Pp. 524-
   526 in: Janick, J. & J.E. Simon (eds.)  _New  crops_,  Wiley,
   New York.

From: Adolf Ceska [aceska at]

The  German  Federal  Mint  Commision  (Deutsches Bundeszentral-
muenzenhauptcommision) in co-operation with the European Central
Mint in Liege discussed at length our criticism of the  old  oak
design (BEN # CCLXVII, April 1, 2001) and decided to replace the
faulty  oak  (oak  with  opposite  leaves)  with a brand new oak
design, this time correctly rendered with alternate leaves.  The
oak  on  5,  2,  and 1-cent coins was designed by Professor Rolf
Lederbogen, who obviously knows what the oak looks like.

French 2 and 1-EURO coins have a tree design on its reverse.  It 
should symbolise life, continuity and growth. The tree is highly
abstract and it's difficult to say  for  sure  what  species  it
represents.  The multiple stems would suggest Banyan Fig (_Ficus
benghalensis_), NOT native to France. The other  possibility  is
that  the  tree  is  in  fact  a  cladogram  of words "fidelite,
egalite," and "liberte" that appear at the  end  of  the  tree's
branches. We also cannot exclude the possibility that the desig-
ner of this French coin, artist Joaquim Jiminez, was inspired by
Borgnino's  model  of  tree architecture described by Prof. Rudi
Schmid in BEN # CCXLVII, April  1,  2000  (see  also  Naturwiss.
Rundschau, Stuttgart 38: 154-155. 1985).

I  also like the the design of Irish coins. They all display the
Irish lyre which appears to be a mirror image  of  the  Guinness
logo, thus commemorating one of the typical Irish pastimes.

The  Canadian Government did consider our critical article about
the Canadian penny (BEN # CCLXVII, April 1, 2001), but concluded
that to replace a faulty maple (one with alternate leaves)  with
a  correct  one  (that  with  opposite  leaves) would be far too
expensive. Even with falling copper prices, the Canadian pennies
can be sold as a scrap metal  for  much  more  than  their  face
value.  The  only action the Government might take in the future
is to recall all pennies. This action will be taken as  soon  as
the world prices of copper start to climb again.

From: News release of B.B.N.P. brewery, August 29, 2001

After an absence of 62 years the world-renowned B.B.N.P. brewery
in   Ceske  Budejovice  (Budweis  on  German  maps),  the  Czech
Republic, has once again started exporting  its  Original  Czech
Premium  Larger  [the "original" Budweiser: _Beer of kings!_] to
the United States of America. Due to an  unfavourable  agreement
with Anheuser-Busch [producer of the "American" Budweiser: _King
of  beers!_], which in 1939 banned the use of the original brand
name in the North American  continent,  this  traditional  Czech
product  is  being  introduced  to the American market under the
Czechvar brand name. [Believe me, the original  Budweiser  by  a
different name still tastes like the original Budweiser. -- AC]


After  reading  BEN  #  CCXIX,  April 1, 1999, Bill Gates sent a
letter to the New York Review of Books in which he  denied  that
he  ever said: 640K OUGHT TO BE ENOUGH FOR ANYBODY. His reply is
too long and too technical for BEN, but it is posted in full  at

From: Adolf Ceska [aceska at]

Already  in  1997  the  _Canadian  Field-Naturalist_  rejected a
submitted paper. Why? Because it had been  previously  published
in BEN.

When  I asked The Editor of the Canadian Field-Naturalist if the
posting in BEN can be considered a publication, Dr. Francis Cook

   "_The reason we decided here that your  newsletter  should
   be  regarded  as a publication is that it is archived, and
   therefore available in the long term._"

   "_Absolutely, I agree it is a grey area. But I don't  want
   to  publish  what  is  already  in newsletters if they are
   generally available. If we should publish,  you  are  most
   welcome  to  repeat what we have run (with citation to The
   Canadian Field-Naturalist) after it appears in CFN._"
The problem is that the publication in journals,  such  as  _The
Canadian  Field-Naturalist_,  takes months or years, whereas the
posting in BEN can be released within a few days  or  weeks.  If
you  want  to notify other botanists about your findings, BEN is
much faster than any printed medium. On the  other  hand,  espe-
cially  in  the  academia,  BEN is not really considered to be a
publication. In a bibliography of one university professor I did
not find a citation of his article in BEN,  but  I  noticed  the
citation  of the same article taken from BEN and reprinted _ver-
batim_ in _Menziesia_ (journal of the Native  Plant  Society  of
British Columbia). If you want to have your article printed both
in  BEN  and in _The Canadian Field-Naturtalist_, you can either
risk it and hope that CFN editors and reviewers do not read BEN,
or you can particularly specify that you don't want to have your
article reviewed by anyone who reads BEN. I  am  sure  that  CFN
will comply with your wishes.

From: Adolf Ceska [aceska at]

I decided to follow Mosher's Law: _It's better to retire to soon
than  too  late!_  and  today  is  the  first day of my official
retirement. Although I want to devote most of my time to  botany
(botany  without  bureaucratic acronyms), my financial situation
will force me to scale down the BEN office to the bare  minimum.
I  will  have  to  lay  off about 14 full-time employees and two
remaining persons out of three will have to arrange time-sharing
and switch to a part-time job. The only full time person in  BEN
will  be  an  attorney  who will defend BEN against all possible
libel suits. I will no longer be able to pay the huge  honoraria
to  authors  as  in  the  past,  and  I won't send them any free
reprints. I hope, however, that the BEN readers won't be able to
recognize any change. In order to support BEN, and also my  wife
and  two cats, I will be available for any botanical, ecological
or environmental consulting within  the  geographical  scope  of
BEN,  i.e.,  _predominantly  British  Columbia,  Canada  and the
Pacific Northwest  (from  California  to  Alaska)  with  broader
references to planet Earth._

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