Long ago I came to believe that you (me, or anyone) can learn something from just about any source, if you’re paying attention. In the press of day-to-day activities, it’s easy to forget that, and all too often there’s no time to follow up on something curious from an unexpected place.
Such as spam. Spam is notorious for many things, including strings of words in the subject line. Occasionally, these are neologisms, which is interesting in its own right, and yesterday I thought I spotted one: the line went blah-blah-blah-mockernut.
Mockernut. Interesting creation, I thought. I almost let it go at that, but instead took a moment to feed the word into Google. This only proved that I’m ignorant of most trees. A web site by a school in Virginia describes the mockernut hickory in some detail.