Theophrastus, a Greek philosopher and natural scientist, 372 to 287 BCE, retells a legend about wise men who sat under the shade of the banana tree and ate some of its fruit. In the time of the legend the banana plant was given the botanical name that translates as “banana of the sages.” Though the botanical name is now obsolete, it makes good story telling.

Is there a name for this kind of failed tautology? Actually a double failed tautology, because this is not a good story. It has the seeds of one, like those vestigial palimpsests found, but not felt, inside the pulp of our yellow friends, but their fecundity has been bred out somewhere along the way. Perhaps in the comments someone can, using the same method on which banana trees now rely for their reproduction, graft a good story on.