Of all anonymous papers foisted on the NAPA in the past ten years only one, Belle Pepper, has been a credit to Amateur Journalism. The others, for the most part, are traceable directly to Hadley Smith and his warped sense of humor. But there’s now another anonymouse in our midst: one “Patrick Montmorency O’Hoodlum of Truckington-on-the-Tyre.” Postmarked Bronx Central Annex New York, Pat’s first offering reached Great Neck October 13th in a plain, typewriter-addressed envelope:
This Shenanigander is a four page 7×10 paper, two columns per page, ostensibly prepared by a professional printer – a friend of a friend of a friend o’ Pat’s. True, the size is rather large to be handled readily on the presses of most amateur printers. But the job is handset in 12 pt. Scotch Roman and Italic, with heads to match in a larger size. Get that: Scotch type for an “Irishman’s” paper! It ain’t right; we Scots object! A type with an Irish flavor, like Cheltenham, would be more suitable. And I protest the equal margins at top and bottom of the pages. The bottom one should be larger to compensate for the short running heads which give an optical impression of 6 picas margin at top as against only 4½ picas at the bottom. Other than that Shenanigander is well printed, legible, typographically tasty – in short, a paper I’d be glad to claim as my own handiwork.
Crane suggests Vondy as perpetrator, pointing out that there is nothing malicious in the humor; it sneaks up on one like laughing gas (which disqualifies several of us more subtle brick-heavers).
Pat is a welcome addition to our ranks, a delightful figment of a gifted imagination. It will take some real sleuthing to catch this clever anonymouse – but remember, Patrick: the real test of a ghost is his ability to reappear and yet remain invisible!
Ballad on Tardiness
by Edmund K. Janes
23 May 1940
Elaine, the lily maid of Salt Lake City,
Had picked a bachelor both wild and witty
To take her place as NAPA editor,
To correspond by air-mail with – with her.
And so, with some help from Felicitas
And you, she brought her deep design to pass.
But Ralph, the bachelor, was not a man
To chime in with designing women’s plan.
For months he never edited one page;
He threw the Fossils into horrid rage.
They wrote to her and then she wrote to him,
But what he wrote to her was awful slim.
At last the three, eh, executing judges
Exhorted him to drop the silly grudges
He’d born against all women since the time
One woman editor offered him a dime
For all the poems he would ever write.
He entered on his duties overnight.
Ralph began editing with ardent vim;
He wrote Elaine as much as she wrote him.
He promised to get all four issues out,
And two will have appeared, without much doubt,
Before Elaine and Ralph peruse this pome
At Philadelphia – or will they both stay home?
Or will they – pardon my imagination,
Determined to make or break my reputation –
Will they by that time be on Treasure Isle,
His lips pressed often to her honeyed smile,
Just Married iodined upon her purse?
Well, anyhow, some dames have done far worse.
Wanted: Old Amateur Papers
Last March 29th Bernice McCarthy, Burton Crane and I met in the Haggerty basement to help VBH with his collection of amateur papers. While Burton, Bernice and VBH sorted papers of 1930-40 I relieved congestion in the filing cabinet by removing over 450 duplicates of the 1890-1930 period. These Vincent donated to my collection, bringing the total close to 3000 papers – most of them the outstanding type of paper currently exemplified by Masaka, Interlude, and Cubicle. Among my papers are: 120 issues of Tryout; 116 of the 208 issues of Swift’s Weekly; Stylus (Foster Gilroy) 10; Vagrant (W. Paul Cook) 9 out of 15; Olympian (Cole) 24 of the 35; Lucky Dog (Tim Thrift) 19; Dilettante (Steinberg) 19; Torpedo (Kendall) 15 out of the 42; Pioneer (Will Murphy) 23; American Amateur (John M. Heins) 15.
These are a few of the files I am particularly anxious to complete. Oldtimers and amateurs having copies of these (or any other) papers would confer a great favor by sending them to me, or writing to state which issues they have and can spare.
All of us have our Moments, but some fella seems to have had a lot of the Weaker kind lately. Which is too bad, but whaddya expect of a Great Necker? So, until Uncle Samuel let’s him settle down some’ere’s and find out where he’s at, please address your complaints to Ralph Babcock to Great Neck, N. Y.