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Re: Post-SICB Report: a couple more (long) thoughts

At 02:18 PM 1/14/99 -0500, Allan Edels wrote:
>Thom -

>    I liked your little 'drama'.   I can understand JH's reluctance to allow
>cladistic analysis to be the basis of much of his work.  For all of his (and
>others) science, there is a little bit of the mystical in how he (and they)
>function in the field [actually out in the field collecting specimens] -
>luck and intuition play a big part in the ability of some people finding
>great specimens - often in places that others have 'just' looked at.

Let me clarify one thing: I chose the "JH" initials to oppose the "TH" one
in the morphometric example because, well, the possessor of said initials &
I don't agree on one or two aspects of tyrannosaur biology.  HOWEVER, JH
*DOES* agree with me on the importance of cladistics, and might even exceed
me in its application to taxonomy (esp. at the "species" level).  (Yeah, I
know this is a big turn around from a few years ago, but he does indeed
strongly support cladistic analysis these days).

>>7)  We can agree on beer.
>>    - Okay, maybe not everybody, and it doesn't have to do with
>>but I wanted to end on a positive note.

>    Well, I know that JH, and TH can agree on beer, and I know that AE
>(moi), and PD, and JF, and DW, and TL, and PW, and so-on and so-on can also
>agree on beer (maybe not the same brand, but ...).  And most can agree
>philosophically with the idea of a beer - even if they cannot, or should,
>not actually partake of the beverage - the idea of sharing some downtime
>with similar people is good.

Well said.

On a related beer-paleo connection:  it is rumored that at the North
American Paleo Convention in Washington, D.C. in 1996, the catering
organizers apparently didn't want to serve beer at the opening reception
(too low brow, I guess).  They finally relented when it was pointed out to
them that paleontologists would be bringing in their own six packs and cases
if it wasn't provided...

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist     Webpage: http://www.geol.umd.edu
Dept. of Geology              Email:tholtz@geol.umd.edu
University of Maryland        Phone:301-405-4084
College Park, MD  20742       Fax:  301-314-9661