I enjoyed MPG's obit for NCTM-L; indeed a clever response, fun reading.
I have a serious question, one I hope people will not not view as cynical, but rather as inquisitive. I am the one who fails to see what use diagramming sentences serves. Some of you have supported it. I sincerely want to understand to what purpose it exists. Some of my colleagues have supported it as necessary in the understanding of languages. I can certainly understand that and as such it should perhaps be included in a study of languages, in whose context it might make more sense; but is it necessary to develop the ability to write? How do you see that it has served you as an adult? This is not intended as a cynical post. I am merely pondering whether there are approaches in both language and mathematics education that need to be rethought.
It is impossible to see facial expressions unless one can see who one is speaking with (I'm sure Winston Churchill will forgive my danglings...will you?) That very reason makes the phone an uncomfortable forum for me. I realize that I have some growing to do within this media. With that, I apologize to those I have offended and I do hope that my question will be viewed as a search for input, nothing more.