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Symposia Participants The first symposium was initiated by Reginald Harris, Director of the Biological Laboratory in 1933. There have been 70 distinguished Symposia since then. Which one did you attend?

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Old 03-01-2003, 11:46 AM
Animesh Ray Animesh Ray is offline
Location: Keck Graduate Institute, Claremont, CA
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Default Barbara McClintock and Frank Stahl: 1984

That was the summer of 1984. DNA Replication and the Recombination Symposium. I saw Frank Stahl towering over Barbara McClintock, the two standing by the bay. As I approached, I heard Stahl exclaim, "...but no one understood what you wrote in those days...even now I don't understand them..you meant for not any one to understand what you wrote!" McClintock shook her little walking stick in the air, "Franklin, you will never grow up!"
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Old 03-19-2008, 11:20 PM
fstahl fstahl is offline
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1

Maybe Animesh misremembers, or missed part of it. I think Barbara said to me, "Well, Franklin, I certainly did not write them for YOU to understand." But that zinger was nothing compared to one she laid on me many years earlier.
In about 1962, Prentice-Hall published my little introductory genetics text "Mechanics of Inheritance." During the summer, Science published Dick Lewontin's review, which was wickedly critical. He found nothing to praise and much to ridicule. In September, I stopped at CSH with my family on the way to England. To relax, I took my two boys (age about 5 and 6) to the Sand Spit, which was sunny and deserted. As I rested on the beach, watching the kids play at the water's edge, Barbara joined me.
"Franklin", she said, "I thought I might find you here."
We exchanged pleasantries and chatted briefly, mostly about the kids.
B: "Franklin, I know it must hurt, but you really mustn't let it get you down.....
F (thinking): "Dear Barbara, she has come all the way to the Sand Spit to cheer me up."
B (continuing):....In a few years, people will have forgotten what a REALLY BAD BOOK IT IS.
F (after recovering): "Uh, uh, what didn't you like about it?"
B: Franklin, you've taken all the mystery out of it --- and the pictures are too big for the pages.

Last edited by fstahl : 05-22-2008 at 06:58 PM.
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