After The Ball
And what do you say after the Big Event – The Centennial Convention – is over and life resumes its more-or-less placid routine. The 1976 NAPA Convention came and went. It was hardly exciting, compared with several past conventions where elections provided tension and oratory.
Oh, there were three surprises in the elections but none could be classed as shocks. I did not expect Dave Warner to be picked as prexy or Bernice Spink as secretary or Kansas City as convention site. Looks like K.C. has almost everything now – a baseball team, a football team, a NAPA convention, and three NAPA members in St. Louis, only 200 miles away. Of course it is easy to understand why K.C. got picked over Kennewick, Washington. Members like to go to conventions. Every mile further to go costs more money. Tho it is only 80 miles from Cranford to Philly I spent a hundred dollars. There are a lot more Eastern members than Pacific members. K.C. is a thousand miles closer. But keep plugging Kennewick and maybe you’ll make it.
There were about 120 people at the Philly convention but a few who were expected to be present were not. 13 ex-presidents attended, 14 others did not. The three I missed most were Ed Newman, Ralph Babcock, and Russ Paxton. (One of them had a pretty good excuse – he had just had to shell out a thousand bucks to put a new roof on his house.)
A lot of other people were not missing. One newspaper said Philly had two million visitors on July 4th. The parade lasted nearly five hours and I saw bands from as far away as Iowa and Florida. Our room was on the ninth floor and we could see buses parked on both sides of two streets as far as one could see. There were more buses than I ever saw in one place in my life.
Oh yes, we attended some parts of the convention. For me the best session was the auction. There were good auctioneers at Natural Bridge and Cleveland but Wesson topped them. The high spot was Shep letting a little piece of polished wood be run up to 21 dollars and bought by his daughter – whereas I think that he felt that wood was worth about 21 cents.
Some Nice Gifts
All NAPA members present received two exceptional gifts. When I had a chance to read all of The First Hundred Years a 72-page book compiled and printed by Harold Segal and bound by Don Brady, I was awestruck. Then I read the 60-page book called National Amateur Presses Assembled which was assembled and bound by Bill Haywood. I will have to rate them as tied.
And messy printers each got an apron suitably inscribed in color to keep their clothes from being soiled by ink or items such as dust on long unused type cases.
Probably the member I was most surprised to see present was George Hamilton who has finally decided that there are safer places to live than Beruit, Lebanon. So some of you never saw his paper in the Bundle. Well, I printed a couple of Slipsheets for him back in 1958. Now he is buying equipment to set up his own hobby print shop.
I missed Jake Warner’s “impassioned plea for the application of Common Sense in the conduct of the affairs of the association.” Conventions often do not use Common Sense or any sense. By an Overwhelming Majority of 18 to 15 votes they will support someone’s questionable interpretation and crucify some eager printer who has been using common sense. Who wins, who loses? The convention murders Common Sense and that printer retires from activity for five years (?) or maybe forever.
So let us pray that the NAPA will wise up in its 2nd century and quit punishing active printers who use COMMON SENSE. Active printers die SOON ENOUGH!
Good luck to President Dave Warner!
Printed by Alfred Babcock
Cranford, N. J. 07016