When an old professor indulges in reminiscences some of his listeners may fear that he has reached the stage of rumination, and has therefore started to waste their time by rechewing old stuff. But a cow who indulges in chewing the cud assists her microbial co-workers by making material digestible which otherwise would be useless. I hope the readers of this preface will look at this more positive aspect of rumination and will bear in a friendly mood the frequent “I” and the seriousness with which I take myself and my cud.


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