The Susquehanna Valley Mycological Society, lets collect mushrooms

Are you a real mushroomer?

Finally a guide to finding out if you are a real mushroomer.

By Ron Myers and Bob Roseberry , Kanas Mycology August and September, 1999 CVMS Spore print

Are you a mushroomer? Here is a guide to determine whether you are qualified for entry into this elite society or just a wannabe.

  • Can be identified by their funny walk. They walk with their heads down. Looking at the ground , until they come to a tree. With their heads come up and they appear to be looking at the sky. And they frequently look behind themselves just to make sure they haven't missed one.
  • Other identification features include the burs on their socks, the constant scratching of chigger bites, and either waterproof boots or wet shoes or socks.
  • Spend more on mushroom books than on the furniture in the room where the books are kept.
  • When entering the bookstore they always head for the "nature guides" area first.  They can identify most mushrooms without a field guide, and never had a "near death" experience due to a misidentification.
  • Can be found in the woods any month of the year, in any kind of weather, and with complete disregard for the temperature.
  • Would rather spend half a day lost in the woods than be found by somebody who is not lost but is hunting their favorite mushroom patch.
  • Can spot a mushroom from their car window at any speed up to 45 miles per hour.  The true professionals can sometimes perform the same feat at 60 miles per hour using their rear view mirror.
  • Will gladly crawl through poison ivy or stinging nettles to harvest a single choice mushroom, and are as adept as circus performers at the three-person-stack (feet on shoulders) to harvest the high growing edibles.
  • Can frequently be seen wandering across the center lines or on the shoulder of roads with their automobiles due .to their habit of constantly evaluating the wooded areas they are passing for their hunting potential and checking in their rear view mirror for poachers who might be following.
  • Have half of their refrigerator shelves occupied by mushrooms they hope to identify.
  • Are careful in identifying anything they intend to eat, but will find some quality in any non-poisonous mushroom. "It adds texture". "It adds color". "It smells like anise".
  • Have a real problem enjoying the scenery when visiting parks because they are always looking for mushrooms.
  • Give honest answers when asked where they find mushrooms. "In the country".  "North of town".  "In a pasture".  "Down by the river".  "Out in the woods".
  • Are noted for their distinctive dress. In addition to oddly matched clothing they frequently carry fancy walking sticks and almost always wear very funky hats.
  • Can be spotted walking around their yard shaking off mature spores off mature mushrooms and dumping the wash water from choice edibles in the hopes of starting their private mushroom patch. The more ingenious ones use their rotary mower and their garden hose sprayer to distribute the spores evenly.

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