(reply to Skeptic Yank’s "just a few years back he was still to be seen in the hallways at U of Hawaii most everyday. stupid *ss me was too intimidated to chat him up. ")
I know what you mean about intimidation. But now that I’m older, fatter, and greyer, and foolishly imagine myself to be wiser, I figure that if I have a question about something a well-known figure wrote, it does little harm to contact them directly to ask; the worst that can happen is they’ll delete my email.
And I’ve been pleasantly surprised to find that various authors, ranging from Keightley, DeFrancis and Shaughnessy in yankland, and Chen Zhaorong and James Hsu in Taibei, have been all too happy to answer and have proven very helpful. And I ended up making a friend with Dr. Chen out of it. So I’m glad I had the gall to fire off those emails.