Written by Fred Patten, and published on the LASFS Rex Rotary, June 15, 1966. Intended for Apa L, Eighty-Seventh Distribution, LASFS Meeting no. 1505, June 16, 1966. Address: 1825 Greenfield Avenue, Los Angeles, California, 90025. Phone: GRanite 3-6321.
|WesterCon in two weeks!||Jerry Jacks for Jr. Committeeman!||Salamander Press #181.|
Deadlines, deadlines, deadlines. This is one of those times when my whole life seems to consist of nothing but typing stencils to meet deadlines. The big project right now is The Best from Apa L, of course, and I've spent most of the weekend working on that. So far, I've got material stenciled and/or run off by Dian and Bruce Pelz, Bĵo, Dave Van Arnam, Tom Digby, Johnny Chambers, Lynn Pederson, Felice Rolfe, Ted White, Dave Fox, Jack Harness, Dick Glass, Creath Thorne, and Gil Lamont; with material by many of the rest of you in preparation. With only a couple more weeks until the Con, I'm taking the whole last week of this month off from work, which should give me enough time to finish it up properly. (Also, if the New York contingent should arrive early with any plans for Disneyland tours and the like, I want to be free for those.) So it looks as though life is going to be one constant burst of fanac for me from now until July 5th, at least.
Not that I'm the only one up to my ears in fanac, of course. If you think I'm busy, you should see the Pelzes. Not only is Bruce working on fanzine projects of his own to be finished by WesterCon time, he and Dian are also hard at work on costumes for the Costume Ball; and if Dian isn't also working on an entry or two for the Art Show, I'll be surprised. Dwain Kaiser has his Best of Fandom, of course -- and I imagine that Fred Whitledge will be helping him with that -- and Bĵo has the Art Show entries to check in and set up. Various others of us are working on costumes, artwork, and other special projects. On the East Coast, the New York contingent is just about to leave on their cross-country drive out here, with a stopover at the MidWestCon on their way. For a lot of people, then, the WesterCon really started about June 1st; the formal festivities from July 1st to the 4th will just be the intensified climax to the whole affair. And no sooner will it end then there's the WorldCon in September to begin preparing for. If Fandom isn't a Way of Life, then what are we all doing here?
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It looks as though I've got an additional bit of fanac on my shoulders, too -- but it's one I don't mind in the least. I just got a letter from Bob Pavlat yesterday, inviting me into FAPA. At long last -- it's five years, to the month, since I published my first fanzine and sent a copy to the Secretary-Treasurer of FAPA, asking to have my name added to the waiting list. Since then, I've been watching the roster steadily, joyous whenever someone dropped and I moved up a rung on the waiting list, though sometimes disappointed, too, when it was one of the better members whose fanzines I'd been looking forward to getting who dropped. But now all that's over. Ah.
-- BEING COMMENTS ON LAST WEEEK'S DISTRIBUTION
Ruth Berman -- As far as I know, all of John Myers Myers' novels are about rootless, apathetic men who learn to live. For that matter, most of his histories are about rootless, if not apathetic, men, too. ## Len's reference to 3x2(9YZ)4A is from an old comic book series of about 15 years ago, in which newsreel cameraman Johnny Chambers would speak that "scientific" formula and become the super-hero, Johnny Quick.
Dave Fox -- Interesting as usual, but I'd rather hear some of your reminiscences about the real LASFS of 30 years ago, than of your Lambengard club.
Dave Van Arnam -- I'm not sure I could take a whole novel's-length worth of your affected writing style. The effect is good, but a little goes a long way. ## If Wollheim is interested in printing as much Merritt-like material as he can, I imagine we'll be seeing most of the novels from STARTLING STORIES in the mid-'40's appearing as Ace books -- most of Kuttner's work has already been reprinted by now. Of course, I've already told Don what I think the best pseudo-Merritt novel available is -- Bok's The Blue Flamingo -- and Don gave me to understand that he considers Bok just about worthless as an author. Humph.
Brandon Lamont -- The information about your job is welcome; it's always interesting to know what LASFSians are doing when they aren't attending the Meetings on Thursday nights. The durachrome decal adds color to your zine and is also welcome. ## Don't forget to redo your artwork on the Bourree Primer for The Best from APA L.
Felice Rolfe -- No, I definitely won't be able to make it up for the party. *sigh*
Bruce Pelz -- Oh, there were myriads of magic power phrases in the comics of bygone days -- they do seem to be bygone days; all modern super-heroes eschew anything so magical-sounding for more "scientific" methods of gaining their powers. Even Dr. Strange is employing a semi-scientific approach to magic these days. Well, don't forget Johnny Chambers' "3x2(9YZ)4A" that we've just been discussing. The Fly and the Jaguar had to say, "The Fly!" and "The Jaguar!", respectively, as part of their metamorphosing processes, though they had to rub magic rings and belts as well; just as the Green Lantern has to say, "In brightest day, in blackest night, no evil shall escape my sight! Let those who worship evil's might, beware my power -- Green Lantern's Light!" to transfer the energy from his lantern to his ring, though the phrase is useless by itself without the lantern. (Back in the '40s, when the lantern was magical, the chant was a lot more believable than it is now, when the lantern is supposed to be a super-scientific device from a planetful of intergalactic Guardians -- in fact, the Green Lantern storyline bears so many similarities to Doc Smith's "Lensman" series these days, that several fans have accused editor Julius Schwartz of basing his comic on Doc Smith's work. Schwartz swears it's a case of two authors hitting independently on the same plot; he'd never read the "Lensman" stories -- though I find that hard to believe, considering what an old-time fan Julie is.) Don't forget the Green Lama, who gained his powers by uttering the mystic phrase, "Om mane padme hum!" (That was a short-lived comic!) "Po She Lo" I don't recognize offhand, though I suspect it's probably the Red Dragon's catchphrase. Hmm, I'm sure I'll think of others as soon as I end this comment, but that seems to drain my memory banks for now. Oh, yes, one more -- and a fitting capper to this d.c. H. L. Gold's World War II hero, Lieut. Hercules. The magic word by which he got his super-powers? "Braaack!"
Jerry Ljung -- Thank you, but I think I can do without joining any more new apas at present. FAPA will keep me busy enough.
Fred Hollander -- Yes, you're usually one of the first to get your copy of the Dist'n after they're ready to be handed out. I don't mind, though, since you do take the trouble to make sure the Dist'n is out before you come into the back room to get it, and you leave promptly as soon as you get your copy. The prime pests are those who hover around while we're obviously still in the process of putting the Dist'n together, saying, "Can I take my copy now?", refusing to leave and actively getting in the way and slowing us down; or who, when they get their copy, merely step back a pace or two and proceed to read it right there in the back room, taking up all sorts of space in already-cramped quarters; or who hang around trying to cadge extra copies for their friends who aren't there that week, but who "would like one anyway", and keep trying to grab the extra copies while we're trying to make sure that the contributors get theirs first. I'm sure you've noticed the people who haven't contributed anything in months but who're always among the first in line, and who get very huffy when we proceed to hand out copies over their shoulders to the contributors in the line behind them -- they won't go away and come back later, but continue to clutter up the back room, sometimes even trying to grab a Dist'n out of my hands. How many indignant complaints have you heard that, "I was standing right there in front of him, and Fred kept on handing out copies right around me!" Another annoyance, though one with some rights, is the agent who wants to pick up the half-dozen or so copies he's responsible for collecting right away, while the room is full of eager fans behind him. It's easier to give out the copies to the contributors who're present first, to get them out of the way, before setting aside copies for our out-of-town contributors who won't be getting them for a couple more days anyhow. Bruce's habit of waiting until I'm almost through handing out the contributors' copies before coming forward to claim his, is greatly appreciated. It has been suggested that the handout system be regulated more firmly, not allowing anyone into the back room until the contributors and collators have all collected theirs first; but who do we have that's an efficient doorman? My general policy is that, if somebody who's not specifically entitled to a Dist'n gets too grabby, I may ignore him and give the remaining copies to others. Moral: don't get grabby, and don't crowd.
Tom Digby -- Don't forget Zeepsday. ## Sure, I'd be glad to get a silk-screen cover from Chuck. Let's get together and plan in advance when to use it, though, so that Chuck doesn't do it for a Dist'n for which I've already got an advance cover.
Tom Locke -- Welcome to Apa L. ## Adding the Tolkien characters to Batman is a bit much, but the first half of your story is a very good parody by itself. ## In addition to the Niger River and Nigeria, there's also the Republic of Niger. (I wonder what it's citizens are called? Not Nigerians; they're the inhabitants of Nigeria. It couldn't be -- Nigers!?)
Len Bailes -- Yes, Cugel was obviously going to Foul Up somehow. He wasn't nearly as interesting a character as any of the leading characters in The Dying Earth itself. ## One of the reasons I don't watch television much is because about the only thing shown on it that I enjoy are some of the old movies; and those, when they show the right ones, are usually on very late at night, are too frequently interrupted by commercials like these, and are cut anyhow. It's not worth it. ## CAPA-alpha, the Comic Fans' apa, is apparently still going, rescued by Don & Maggie Thompson after the incumbent OE (read CM -- Central Mailer), Jerry Bails, decided to gafiate, and instead of turning the post over to another member, he tried to disband the apa. Loud screams were heard, and Don & Maggie were first in establishing a Provisional Government, sending out a general notice advising everyone to send their zines to them for the next three (monthly) mailings, to be followed by a general election in September to pick a regular CM and a set of rules. (Jerry had started the apa from scratch, and hence was allowed to run things dictatorially; he did set out a written code of rules, but they were pretty unworkable, and he changed them so much by fiat anyway that nobody knows were we stand now.) I'll be a candidate for CM in September, and maybe if all the LA fans who've been talking about joining CAPA-alpha someday take the trouble to do it now, we may have enough votes to bring the CM-ship out here.