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 >> I think you've just found out about closures.

   Or at least I think I might now recognize their practical application. 

   I'm comfortable with the notion of a function carrying around it's own
environment, but I don't have a lot of practical experience with how to
exploit that concept to get real work done.  I suspect that if I'd been at
a school where LISP (for example) was in fashion that it might be a
different story.