On the third Tuesday of each month from September thru May, the Mycological Society of San Francisco has a General Meeting at the County Fair Building. Note: All regular General Meetings are open to the public. The highlight of each meeting is a speaker with slides on some aspect of mycology and mushrooming: ecology, taxonomy, mycophagy, sociology, etc. Before each meeting members bring collections which are put on display and identified. Refreshments are served before the meeting. Doors open and identification starts at 7 pm and the meeting starts at 8 pm. (The December meeting is replaced by a dinner at a different location.)
Two decades have passed since the publication of Mushrooms: Poisons and Panaceas. The presentation is a critical review of more recently described toxic mushrooms and various ways that mushrooms potentially harm us. This includes the ‘little white mushroom of Yunnan”, the stories behind angel wings and Man-on-horseback, the neurological effects of morel gluttony, the inherent dangers of foraging and others. These are told from a perspective of a pathologist, sometimes with a wry sense of humor
Denis Benjamin, born in South Africa, emigrated to the USA in 1970. He completed his residency in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Washington in Seattle and was on the faculty until 2000. He practiced pediatric pathology at the chil-dren’s hospital in Seattle and later at Cook Children’s in Fort Worth. He became a hiker and mushroom enthusiast, spending much of his leisure time on the eastern slopes of the Cascades. Now retired from medical practice he devotes his energy to natural histo-ry and documenting the wildflowers and mushrooms with photography and watercol-ors. The latter was inspired by a workshop with the noted Russian botanical artist (Al-exander - Sasha - Viazmensky). He has attended botanical illustration at the Gage Academy of Art in Seattle. A past board member of the Puget Sound Mycological So-ciety, he recently helped establish the Yakima Valley Mushroom Club. He was Chair-man of the Toxicology Committee of NAMA for a number of years and a consultant for the regional Poison Control Center. He is author of Mushrooms: Poisons and Pana-ceas (1995, WH Freeman and Co. NY, NY) and Musings of a Mushroom Hunter: A Natural History of Foraging (2010 Tembe Press, Cle Elum, WA) He now lives in Fort Worth and is a Research Associate at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas.