Written by Fred Patten, and published on the LASFS Rex Rotary, May 4, 1966. Intended for Apa L, Eighty-First Distribution, LASFS Meeting no. 1499, May 5, 1966. Address: 1825 Greenfield Avenue, Los Angeles, California, 90025. Phone: GRanite 3-6321.
WesterCon: only 2 months! WorldCon: only 4 months! Salamander Press #172.

Well, I spent a delightful Sunday around the Trimbles' pool, but otherwise don't have much to report in the way of personal experiences. Well, let's see if there's anything in that reliable standby, PUBLISHERS' WEEKLY, worth reprinting to fill a page or two.

Hm, tum te tum. Ah, here's something to gladden the hearts of all the Travis McGee fans in our midst. Barbara A. Bannon, PW's paperback reviewer, announces the release of John D. MacDonald's latest McGee novel, Darker Than Amber, on May 31; as usual, a Gold Medal Original for 50¢:

"Private eye [?] Travis McGee's latest adventure begins while he's sitting in a boat quietly doing some night fishing. Suddenly a woman with a concrete block tied to her ankle is hurled from the bridge above. Travis dives and rescues her. She's a tough one and drops lots of hints about the events that led to her near drowning, but she won't squeal on the mob that tried to eliminate her. A few days later the mob is more successful and the girl is dead. Travis goes into action, infiltrating the seamy side of Florida beach society. The writing is good MacDonald -- a blend of violence, intrigue, sex, a little philosophy, and well-done Florida background."

Say, considering what Hollywood and Dean Martin have done to Matt Helm recently, can you imagine what would happen if the sultans of the silver screen ever decided that McGee would make a good entry into the current movie secret-agent races?

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Travis McGee -- the Man from H.O.U.S.E.B.O.A.T.
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Every now and then, I'm tempted to go into the regular bookstore business, just to be able to get some of the free promotional junk that shows up regularly in one advertising campaign or another:

"A HOT DOG COOK-IN is Doubleday's new idea for promoting William I. Kaufman's "The Hot Dog Cookbook" (May 20), and all dealers are invited to try it out. Participating booksellers will receive, free of charge, a kit organizer with complete details for setting up the cook-in plus the following items: invitations in postcard form for customers; press material for local newspapers and radio and TV stations; two large and two small "Put on the Dog" posters; 25 "Hot Dog" balloons; a Hot Dog Certificate officially registering the store as a member of the Hot Dog Club of America - plus extra certificates for customers; 25 Hot Dog buttons; a "Hot Dog" trophy paperweight; two barbecue aprons; one nine-ounce jar of French's mustard; one bottle of Cattlemen's barbecue sauce. A special free bonus will be a fully electric Presto Deluxe Automatic "Hot Dogger" which is worth $9.95, and cooks six hot dogs in 60 seconds. The dealer will have to supply the perishables - rolls and frankfurters - and have enough copies of "The Hot Dog Cookbook" on hand, of course."

Sounds like the makings for a ready-made picnic. I wonder how many copies of the book we'd have to order to qualify for the promotional kit? Too bad we don't know any friendly bookstores. (Hmm, there's the Collectors Book Store -- how many copies of the book would we have to promise to buy before they'd place an order to get us all the free junk? Anybody like hot dogs that much? Nah; probably not worth it.)

For PEANUTS fans: on June 9, World Publishing Co. will release Charles Schulz's new $2.50 four-color book, Charlie Brown's All Stars, a depressing compendium of the little baseball manager's many frustrations. By a remarkable coincidence, a half-hour color TV cartoon CBS special, sponsored by Coca-Cola, devoted to this same story, will be televised the night before. How about that?

Those of us who were around the LASFS three or four years ago may remember SINA -- the Society for Indecency to Naked Animals; we couldn't decide whether they were for real or not. No, as it turned out; and now SINA's history from its beginning in 1959 to its end, is being told by its founder/promoter: The Great American Hoax, by Alan Abel, due out from Trident Press on June 28 at $4.95. Abel says he was kidding all along, though not all of his supporters were. The SINA story is also being made into a motion picture, for release sometime this year. They never did get Jackie Kennedy to put trousers on her horses, did they?

Those of us (among whom I include myself) who are interested in genuine pop art in the form of posters -- bullfight posters, travel posters, movie posters -- as a form of interior decoration, will be interested by this announcement:

"DARIEN HOUSE, Inc. (556 Madison Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10022) has begun reproducing for bookshop and other sale some of the most imaginative and entertaining commercial advertising posters of 1965, as selected by an international board of artists and designers, including Tomi Ungerer. All of the posters are reproduced through exclusive arrangements with the advertisers and their agencies. The bright posters, produced by some of America's most talented artists, range in size from 23 by 29 inches to a huge 48 by 62 inches. They have retail prices that range from $1.95 to $4.95. ... They include, among others, the famous "You don't have to be Jewish to love Levy's" poster (Levy Real Jewish Rye); "Fu Manchu for Mayor" (Seven Arts Pictures); "You can tell the adults by the paper they read" (Tomi Ungerer series for the New York Times); and "Big Bold Beautiful Big-A" (the Tom Cunningham painting for Aqueduct race track). The latter just won top honor at the recent Society of Illustrators show. Other posters represent Rheingold beer, Tomi Ungerer's "Underground Sketchbook" and concerts by the Supremes, Count Basie and Stan Getz and Dave Brubeck and Count Basie. Jack Rennert, president of Darien House, is now at work assembling several other lines of posters, including a "Most Exciting European Poster" line and a line of political posters from all over the world."

Aside from the fact that it all sounds like a paid plug for Tomi Ungerer, I'll be very interested in seeing what all they come up with, particularly in the political poster line. I would like one of those "Fu Manchu for Mayor" posters. I hope the Los Angeles bookstores decide to carry them; usually they won't handle this "arty" stuff, as not worth the trouble they have to put into handling it.

Johnny Chambers -- A fine cover; I hope we can count on more from you every so often? Say one every month or two? ## I hope you'll forgive me for tampering with this one, but I didn't think "An Apa L Cover for Fred Patten" lettered across the bottom really helped the artistic value of the cartoon any. Your human-type people here look like George Metzger's style of drawing; are you familiar with his work at all? ## The reason that ANDVARI wasn't in Apa L last week was that it ended up in the Post Office with 11¢ postage due on it, and I couldn't get in until Saturday to ransom it. 10¢ isn't really enough to get a package of fanzines to me, even at 3rd class rates; you'd better count on using at least 20¢ per package in the future.

Dave Fox -- One thing that makes your philosophical comments so difficult to answer is the difficulty of determining whether they are really your opinions, put into the mouths of your Khorlian inhabitants, or actually ideas with which you disagree, put into Khorlia to help set it further apart from the mundane world? In any case, I'd like to disagree with the thesis stated here, that future ages may come to know little about our age as compared to what we know about the ancient civilizations, because our records are on perishable paper while theirs were on solid stone, clay tablets, etc. In the first place, I don't think any violent discontinuity is going to engulf civilization, destroying most of our written records. In the second, I think that our paper records would continue to preserve the story of our times due to their profusion. When you consider how many copies of our books, periodicals, reports, etc., that there are, it would be almost impossible to destroy them all. Unless something completely catastrophic occurs -- of such a nature that it would destroy all those stone monuments and clay tablets, too -- some paper documents would continue to survive and be discovered from time to time, like what happened a few years ago with the Dead Sea Scrolls. The ephemera will disappear through the course of history, yes, but then how much of the ephemera of our past has come through to us? (A few of those clay tablets, yes; I'll bet that more of our ephemera would survive in like circumstances.) ## Nice notes on Khorlia's currency. You're right about paper money the size of typing paper; I saw a Swiss 1,000 franc note recently, and I'll swear it was 8 x 11". As long as it isn't carried to ridiculous extremes, though, I think coding paper money with different sizes of paper for the different denominations is a good idea. ## In the line of places that've figured in science-fiction stories, there's Pershing Square, in Leiber's The Wanderer; and in the line of things, there's the LASFS itself, in Chad Oliver's "Any More At Home Like You?"

Andy Porter -- I dunno, but if Harlan's "'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman" is an example of the Modern Science-Fiction Story, I'll take G. Peyton Wertenbaker. It was an incident, and it had a plot; it's also, to my way of thinking, a piece of sloppy writing. Maybe it's just that Harlan's Special Style of Writing doesn't appeal to me, but I think there's more to it than that. Take the jelly beans, for example. Here you've got this 1984-type of regimented society, where everybody has to keep on a set schedule or the Ticktockman will kill them with a gimmick straight out of Van Vogt's "The Great Judge". The Harlequin, a slob who couldn't keep to a set schedule to save his life, decides this regimentation is a bad thing, and sets out as a Robin Hood to free the people from their tyranny. On one occasion, there's this shift of workers who are going home right on schedule at 5:00 p.m. on the slidewalk when the Harlequin appears in an air-boat and dumps $150,000 worth of jelly beans, when jelly beans haven't been made for over 100 years, onto the slidewalk which jams the gears and bollixes up the schedule and all the workmen start laughing and eating the jelly beans and all. So okay. If the Harlequin is such a slob and foulup, where'd he get the $150,000 to buy the jelly beans? If jelly beans haven't been made for over 100 years, where'd he get them? Why do the workers, who should be terror-stricken at the thought of being executed for getting off schedule, start laughing and eating the jelly beans, which, if jelly beans haven't been made for over 100 years, should be unknown to them? (If someone dumped a bunch of unknown stuff on the ground at my feet, I sure wouldn't be in a hurry to scoop it up and stuff it into my mouth.) But we aren't supposed to ask these questions, or to be concerned about a few little unimportant loose ends, because this is the new type of allegorical plotless science-fiction, and anybody who demands a straightforward explanation to everything that happens is an old fuddy-duddy. The new mottoes are "Be abstract!" "Who cares?" "T. S." And, as Harlan so eloquently puts it, "Get stuffed!" Maybe so, but I'll still take Murray Leinster's latest formula space opera any day.

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