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The Hoddle of Coffee: Tottenham news and links for Monday, August 29

The hidden life of treats - neat!

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Nottingham Forest v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

good morning everyone!

All of this talk about Nottingham Forest has made me parse through my library and pull out one of my favourite books, The Hidden Life of Trees. Like the Charles Mingus autobiography, it has been almost a year since I have finished it. I read this and a collection of essays on Henry David Thoreau during autumn last year.

Trees are cool. In fact, they’re amazing!

What I enjoyed most about this book was that it breathed character into these organisms. It was cited in another book I read, What a Mushroom Lives For (that’s for another hoddle), because the prose was rather unscientific in that it almost anthropomorphosised the trees. As an unscientific person myself, that is what I enjoyed most about it.

Trees are so beautiful and unique, filled with dazzling colours of flours and fruits and bark, shaped in the most gorgeous ways. Just yesterday morning I admired a willow tree overlooking the Potomac River.

This book, along with What a Mushroom Lives For, challenge the idea of Charles Darwin’s “survival of the fittest” theory, which from my understanding translates into a more competitive nature. Whereas perhaps forests and the ecosystems that they create fall into a “survival of the most collaborative” category.

If trees die, so too do the myriad organisms that benefit from it. And therefore, trees must work together to protect themselves, their environments and those that benefit from the environments:

“Every tree ... is valuable to the community and worth keeping around for as long as possible. And that is why even sick individuals are nourished until they recover” (4).

The book also challenges how we - or your unscientific HIC - think of trees, as these static blocks of branches. A sick tree is not the fittest tree. If life were the survival of the fittest, then that tree would not survive, right? And if that tree did not survive, then its death would harm its environment, right?

Gosh, perhaps your HIC is wrong. But I look at trees so differently after reading this book. I certainly have admired them for a long time, but now I consider them to exist in their own environments and I a mere passerby.

Will there be more tree talk? Probably! We’ve only hit Chapter 1 of 36, and there is still that mushroom book to talk about. Oh, and eels.

Fitzie’s track of the day: Sentimental Lady, by Fleetwood Mac

And now for your links:

Antonio Conte on what he has seen from Djed Spence

Nottingham Forest still need to address defence after defeat to Spurs

The Athletic ($$): Steve Cooper not impressed by Richarlison ‘showboating’

Andre Belotti joins Roma on free transfer

Transfer rumours: Manchester United closing in on €100m signing of Antony