¡Rábanos Radiactivos! #2233

Written by Fred Patten, and intended for Apa L, 2233rd Distribution, LASFS Meeting No. 3681, February 28, 2008.
Golden State Colonial Convalescent Hospital, 10830 Oxnard Street, North Hollywood, California 91606-5098.
Telephone: hospital(818) 763-8247; personal (818) 506-3159 * eMail:fredpatten@earthlink.net

Denvention 3 in 2008! Anticipation in 2009! Salamander Press #2716


My sister Sherrill brought me to last week's LASFS meeting. It was supposed to rain all evening, but we had the good luck of momentary breaks in the rain just at the times to go to and return from Freehafer Hall, although it was still very damp and cold out. CLJII had skipped ahead to the final chapter of The Secret of Treasure Island before starting a different serial, as requested. The serial ended with lots of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, which eliminated the usual boredom. The death of British fan Ken Slater was announced. A major guest was Lee Gilliland in a striking gold dress. She announced that her husband Alexis, the 2006 Rotsler Award recipient, is trying to obtain copies of all his fanzine cartoons since the 1970s to publish a complete collection of them, but although he has over 15,000, there are more that he needs. Anyone who had any old fanzines with his cartoons was urged to scan and e.mail them to him. Unfortunately, the meeting ran so long that we had to return to the hospital before the program, George Van Wagner's tribute to Don "Mr. Wizard" Herbert, started.

On Sunday, Sherry brought me to her apartment for a "cleaning out the closet" of sorting through boxes of miscellanea that had been lying around since my stroke in 2005 and had not seemed like part of my collection to be sent to the UCRiverside Library. Most of it was probably junk, or would be more trouble than it was worth to find anyone who might appreciate it such as 1981 anime calendars or old cereal box plastic statuettes of Hanna-Barbara cartoon characters. However, among it was my early 1960s editorial file for my fanzine Salamander, with unpublished fan cartoons by Jim Cawthorn, Terry Jeeves, Arthur Thomson, and, yes, Bill Rotsler, plus some by fan artists whose names I have long forgotten. Most of the ATom art is unused "Ron Ellik for TAFF" cartoons which could easily have the captions removed. Are there any fanzine publishers in the LASFS today (hi, Marty Cantor) who might be interested in this? Or in unpublished stories or humorous essays by Redd Boggs?

I worked at my computer in my study while Sherry watched the televised Oscars ceremony in her living room. I was not interested in the Oscars in general, but I did pay attention to the two animation category winners: Ratatouille for Best Animated Feature and "Peter and the Wolf" for Best Animated Short. I was very happy about these, since they were my choices among the nominees; I made my comments on the pretentious "Madame Tutli-Putli" in ”RR! #2223. I assume that most LASFen (except Marty Cantor) have seen Ratatouille by now. I saw Suzie Templeton & Hugh Welchman's stop-motion "Peter and the Wolf" (officially "Prokofiev's Peter & the Wolf") as one of the short films linked to The First Post's Online Animation Festival that I linked to here in ”RR! #2224. Unfortunately, it has since been removed for free viewing from the Internet to sell it on PAL DVDs for £14.99, which will not play on North American TVs. Its British releaser's URL for the 30-minute film, which does include its trailer, is http://www.breakthrufilms.co.uk/peterandthewolffilm/trailer.html# I strongly recommend watching at least the trailer for free. The quality of the stop-motion animation and of the puppets, filmed at Lodz's Se-ma-for Studios, is incredible; I could almost swear that it was a live-action film.

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Lee Gold has suggested the addition to my LASFS history for the LASFS website of a statement that the four stars in the chief of the LASFS' coat-of-arms signify that the LASFS began as Chapter Four of the Science Fiction League, as a link leading to a separate detailed description and history of the coat-of-arms.

This seems worth a sidebar on the LASFS' website. I got these details decades ago from Forry Ackerman, Rick Sneary and Bruce Pelz, and from Forry's collection of LASFS fanzines and general s-f newszines of 1940 and 1941 that I read in 1976 while researching the Worldcon's history. I hope I have remembered them correctly. Any corrections will be appreciated, and further details should be found in the fanzines of 1940 and 1941 and added to this. (What did happen to Forry Ackerman's collection of old fanzines?)

While the LASFL was a Chapter of the Science Fiction League, the SFL's emblem was the club's emblem. This was shown clearly in full color on the covers of Wonder Stories of May and December 1934, and on the SFL's enameled membership pin. (Forry Ackerman was still wearing this regularly through the 1980s & '90s; I assume that many more LASFen had the pins in 1940.)

When the club seceded from the SFL and declared itself the independent Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society at its meeting of March 27, 1940, press releases were sent to all the fannish newszines and major fanzines of the day like Fantasy Fiction Field and Fantasy Times, describing in detail such trivia as why the club chose the name Science Fantasy Society instead of Science Fiction Society, etc. At or shortly after this time, the LASFS announced a fandom-wide contest to design a new emblem for the reorganized club. (What were the rules that were given for this contest? Obviously the club's motto of "De Profundis Ad Astra" already existed since it was required to be included; when was it chosen?) Only one entry was received, from Roy V. Hunt of Denver's Colorado Fantasy Society, but it was so complete that the LASFS approved it without any changes.

From the top down, the 1934 badge of the Science Fiction League is shown in the crest, small but in full detail except for the name "Science Fiction League" which was removed from the rim of the circle.

The four stars in the chief are for the LASFS' origin as Chapter 4 of the Science Fiction League.

The field is divided into thirds. The first two thirds are charged with a microscope and a spaceship in deep space, which symbolize the club's motto, De Profundis (from the depths, microscopically small) Ad Astra (to the stars, macroscopically large). They also represent "science fiction".

The demons stirring a bowl in the lower third are from the logo of the Weird Tales Club designed by Hannes Bok. Although the SFL was falling apart by 1940, there were other national/international s-f clubs that the LASFS was and wanted to remain a member of. Including the WTC logo as a charge in the LASFS coat of arms signifies the LASFS' willingness to work with or join other s-f organizations. (The LASFS bought a club membership in the Worldcon for years when memberships were only $1.00 or $2.00.) It also represents the club's interest in "fantasy".

The single star at the center of the coat of arms stood for the LASFS' membership in the Science Fictioneers, a club started by Frederik Pohl's Super Science Stories to replace the moribund SFL. (I think the LASFS was Chapter 1 of the Science Fictioneers.) The Science Fictioneers did not have an emblem of its own, and may not have lasted past 1940 although the magazine did. Does anyone besides Fred Pohl know?

The motto at the base of the coat of arms is the LASFS' De Profundis Ad Astra.

(The LASFS coat of arms was only in black & white for its first forty-some years. When I had it made into paperweights -- I forget just when, but the date should be in Apa L and the Menace -- the club approved my suggested colors of the SFL badge in its original colors of mostly red, blue, yellow (or brass) & white; the chief and the two "science fiction" sections of the field in the club's new colors of black & gold; and the "fantasy" section in the LASFS' original colors of brown & green. The paperweight manufacturer had to simplify these, and I do not believe the coat-of-arms has ever been shown in its exact colors. Later, when the coat-of-arms was colored for the LASFS' sign, painted on the storage shed, etc., the colors have always been simplified or "improved" in some way. Some artists have even modernized the old-fashioned rocket design in the SFL badge, without authorization.)

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-- Comments on Last Week's Distribution:

Cover - (Gold) Either that's a mighty small dinosaur & Earth, or a mighty big everything else.

De Jueves #1571 - (Moffatts) I am one of those who argue for reading the Narnian Chronicles in the order published, even if Lewis himself disagreed. Reading The Magician's Nephew first is like reading the end of a mystery to find out whodunit before reading the rest of the book. ## I do not use a spam filter. I have plenty of time in my hospital bed to delete spam individually, and I am wary of filters because so many people who use them complain about not getting mail that was not spam that they had wanted. ## Roz Gibson goes to cons mainly to make money at her dealer's table and in the art show, according to her, although I suspect that she enjoys the social aspects more than she admits. I regret being unable to include some hilarious cartoon convention reports she drew in the 1990s for Yarf! and other fanzines, or any pages of my comic book story that she drew, "Mighty Tiny: Beyond the Mountain of Glass" in Mangazine, January 1989. She mostly sells self-published comic books and what she enters in the Art Show, and takes art commissions. I read her first draft of an anthropomorphic s-f novel, Griffin Ranger, and was extremely impressed; I and others are urging her to polish it up and submit it professionally.

All Generalizations Are False - (Cantor) Including this one, of course. ## As far as I am concerned, any histories of fandom that I write should be spread to everyone who wants them, Fancyclopedia III & others. ## Did I ever write about LASFAPA? I just said that it started in 1976; the more extensive comments are all by you.

Vanamonde #769 - (Hertz) Have you encountered considerable delays in taking the train between L.A. and Anaheim, or in your experience has the transit generally been smooth? ## Arrhwy, the panther in A Marriage of Insects, is specifically a no-mannered blunt individual who scorns the refined niceties of the crickets' elaborate etiquette. Her comments are certainly crisp, but neither meager nor hollow.

Godzilla Verses #179 - (DeChancie) Fritz Leiber was a roomer in the Fan Hilton for several weeks or months around 1960 & 1961, and attended LASFS meetings while he was in the L.A. area. Bĵo Trimble should be able to give more specific information.

I Ignite Ambrosia - (Gold) I am so glad that you did not recommend me to the hospital with the 7:00 p.m. curfew, or the one that would have not allowed me to have a computer! I am apparently very fortunate in getting into a hospital that will allow me to stay out until 10:00 p.m., to have a computer (and was willing to pay the costs of having my temporary room converted to computer access, if there had been any), and is very near to the LASFS; not to mention the approval given it by Rob Powell who was an ambulance orderly and was familiar with many convalescent hospitals; he said that, compared with others, the nurses seemed to genuinely care for the patients, it did not smell bad, and he did not see a single cockroach. I do wish the management would resurface the patio and the parking lot, though. The hospital was originally 1930s movie star Guy Kibbee's mansion, and while it has lots of rooms, none of them are modernized. ## Apparently Golden State Hospital was counting on the income from full occupancy to finance the repairs to the bathroom in Room 15. As soon as I was moved to Room 5, the hospital lost 8 patients to death or moving out. (I am amazed by how decrepit some patients are in their 80s or early 90s, while my 95-year-old mother is still living in her own house and driving a car.) It has to wait to replace most if not all of those before it can afford to begin any major repairs. ## I am leery about joining new groups that would require a lot of writing. I feel overextended already since I can only write with one finger of my left hand. ## Kay Shapero already has a weblink to Anthro magazine on my website. I repeat it here in ”RR! every two months anyway, when a new issue with more of my reviews goes online. The March - April 2008 issue should go online next week, by the way. As for Renard's Menagerie, that is a digest quarterly paper magazine. It does have a website, but that just has descriptions of the five issues published so far, plus subscription and back issue ordering information. ## Does the Madonna Inn still allow casual stopovers by tourists to gawk? As of the last time I stopped there, which was at least three decades ago, you were welcome only if you had a meal in their coffee shop or bought something in their gift shop or were seriously interested in staying there; but were barely tolerated if you just wanted to look into their fancy rooms (including the "marble waterfall" restrooms) or wander around through their gardens. Some fans considered the Madonna Inn for a convention (a Westercon?) around the late 1960s or 1970s, and learned that it does not accept any conventions because they are too likely to damage the inn. The outdoor parts of the inn would not be very visible during a heavy rain, anyway. A highlight of traveling via Highway 5 that I remember (or on Route 152 over the Pacheco Pass, right by the Casa de Fruta, connecting Highway 5 with Highway 101 to San Jose) was traffic in both directions being stopped for about 45 minutes until some highway patrolmen could chase two stray horses out of the middle of the road.

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