The current issue features a picture of Francois Champollion on its cover. We wanted to have a picture of Panini, but we couldn't find one. A somewhat unscrupulous member of our editorial staff suggested we just find a picture of a random ancient Indic person, since no one would be able to tell the difference, but he was shouted down at a raucous board meeting. As for Champollion, some people objected that he wasn't really a grammarian, but more of a decipherer. But he certainly falls under the category of linguist, and he fits the two basic requirements for appearance, which are that the linguist pictured be (1) famous, and (2) dead. Many famous living linguists, unaware of the second requirement, have sent me crotchety letters asking why they haven't appeared on the cover yet. Once I explain the requirements to them, they mostly state that they're in no hurry.
Also, it helps if you've been dead a good while. Decades at least, and sometimes even more. Thus, even so great a linguist as Lucas Carl Hayfield (see the Obituary in this issue) is unlikely to appear for many years yet. Same goes for Roman Jakobson, who lived so long that large numbers of his original students predeceased him. Of course, World War II also had something to do with that.
Anyway, readers of the current issue of SpecGram will note that, along with the standard scholarly articles that are the bread and meat of academic publishing, we have also included some extra-special features collected under the label "Odds and Ends". Crack legal researcher Aya Katz has uncovered a fascinating and important linguo-jurisprudential document; biolinguist Dave Fleck has written a heartfelt and moving obituary of the great linguist Lucas Carl Hayfield; and budding medium Keith Slater has begun to channel the spirit of William Carlos Williams. Which, by the way, is a good name: William Carlos Williams. A lot more pleasing to me than Ford Madox Ford.