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March 2003 TOC
Archived letters

Letters to the Editor, March 2003

This a traditional letter column. You are encouraged to write a letter of comment on anything that you find worthy of comment. It will (may) be published in this column along with my reply. As editor I reserve the right to delete material; however I will not alter the undeleted material. E-mail to me that solely references the contents of this site will be assumed to be publishable mail. All other e-mail is assumed to be private. And, of course, anything marked not for publication is not for publication. Oh yes, letters of appreciation for the scholarly resources provided by this site will be handled very discreetly. This page contains the correspondence for March 2003.

Some of it is a little ancient; I’m slowly catching up – very slowly.

Index of contributors

Other Correspondence Pages

From: R. Spellman
Date: 3/23/2003
Subj: Jane Austin

As amusing as your web-site for the quite prolific Calamity Jane Austin is, you actually link to real web sites about Jane Goodwin Austin–a real writer. I don’t know if this is part of the intended humorous spread of misinformation, but I thought I figured that J.G. Austin is unknown enough that she might have accidentally been listed here.

No, her inclusion is intentional. The Calamity Jane Austin pages are a “service” for hapless students who are raiding the net for essay material but who can’t spell the name of the author they are seeking. However it may chance that there are souls who are searching for information about the real Jane Austin; they deserve their link.
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From: Marjorie
Date: 3/22/2003
Subj: Calamity Jane Austin

Congrats on a job well done. We laughed ourselves silly Now.. what is the original source of ” A dark and stormy night.???”

Some would say that it was Bulwer-Lytton’s novel, Paul Clifford. However, others would say that Edward George (if we might take liberties with the author in question) suggest that he appropriated the line from earlier works, the original being “A dark and stormy knight”, referring to an irate Moorish knight. The line has variously been attributed to Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, and Richard Sheridan. Some scholars who hold with the latter attribution claim that “dark” refers not to “Moorish” but rather to “Black Irish”. As to this I cannot say, for my copy of the works of Sheridan on vellum parchment has been seriously defaced by small children wielding crayons and press-on tatoos.
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From: Sue Lange
Date: 3/12/2003
Subj: Your site

Mr. Harter,

You are one sick puppy. And I mean that in a good way. Here are my responses to the little bit of snooping I did on your site:

I do hope that you don’t work for the official snoops in the government. I shouldn’t want to confuse them any more than they already are.
1) Is “dast” really a word?
I can’t find it in my dictionary, a failing that establishes the inadequacy of said reference volume. However the word was quite good enough for Mark Twain (see Puddin’ Head Wilson, et al) and I for one am content to emulate the vocabulary of one of the greatest of American writers.
2) I am appalled at the thought of Bobby Vinton in that booth continuously singing “Blue Velvet.” Are you sure it wasn’t one of those clone acts that goes around. You know, like the ten different Temptations acts there are, one in every race thereby satisfying every possible wedding reception.
I can’t say; I wasn’t there, and, Allah being merciful, I shall never be there.
3) Where can I find a copy of the Marine’s Theme? I do think I’d like a new tune for Clementine.
I suppose you might find it on the official USMC site. I can’t help you much there, not being able to read music, nor, according to some, sing it either.
That’s all I have time for now. I shall look forward to returning to your site when I have more time (actually, when my boss is not hovering).
Hook your boss on video games so that he/she/it/them stops hovering. You need to spend your time on important things and not waste it on work.
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From: Gerry Martin
Date: 3/8/2003
Subj: hi

We are happy to inform you that we at http://www.123greetings.com find friendship.html to be an wonderful resource for our Friendship greeting cards page http://www.123greetings.com/friendship/thoughts/. We are interested to add a link to your site at our respective page and would definitely expect a reciprocal link back to our site.

Url: http://www.123greetings.com/friendship/
Title: Friendship Greeting Cards, Ecards From 123Greetings.com

Please let us know if you are interested.
Looking forward to receive a positive reply.

I am happy to inform you that you may place a link to my page; indeed, you do not need my permission to do so. As to putting a link to your page, I hope you will be satisfied with mention in my correspondence column.
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From: Peepertoad9
Date: 2/24/2003
Subj: hi

i need info on fossils can you send me stuff about fossils

May I suggest that you look at museum sites? They might meet your needs better than I could.
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From: Larry Ward
Date: 02/25/2003
Subj: Analysis

Having only the one lifetime, I’ll never be able to explore your entire slum city of the mind. But from an aerial view, I think I like it better than Tokyo. It contains some unsettling news. I am highly offended that an honest bear can’t get a beer in Billings, and, no less offended that there are physicists who believe that 17 is the highest integer. What is the world coming to.

Bad things, I am sure. The young have no respect for their elders, the officials of the state are corrupt, the priests are hypocrites, the workers are slothful, and there is depravity in the streets. And that was the situation ten thousand years ago. Things have gone steadily down hill since then.
I am neither a physicist nor a mathematician (though I admire Newton and Tom Lehrer). I am sort of a Christian, from the sinners and prostitutes side of the family and I urge you to consider the following Scripture. It says that when you are glorified (that’s Christian slang for being murdered by the state), be content to say a few words. Obviously, I have a little trouble with this.
A wise man lives life as though he will never be glorified?
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From: Mark A Harris
Date: 3/4/2003
Subj: Passing through Branson

Though not a native of Branson, the singer of “Blue Velvet” was the Polish Prince, Bobby Vinton. Don’t ask me how I know this, but I think it had something to do with the barbershop to which my father used to take me when I was young. Posters of Bobby Vinton and Bobby Curtola used to figure prominently, even 20 years later.

The name, Bobby Vinton, sounds right. I think I’ve seen him being touted in one of those “best of” collections that are touted on TV.

The thought occurs to me that there is the makings of a story here. In one of the Chinese parables a great artist is commissioned to make a painting of a fish. Every so often the patron comes by and asks if the painting is done. Each time the artist says no. Finally, after a year, the patron comes by and insists on seeing the painting. The artist takes out fresh parchment, with a few swift strokes paints a perfect fish, and presents the painting to the patron. The patron expresses surprise and asks why he had to wait a year for a painting that was done in moments. The painter then opens a closet door and hundreds of paintings tumble out.

Similarly, could we not have an artist in Branson singing the same song over and over again for years until at last he has a performance that he feels is suitable for recording?

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From: Zahid
Date: 02/26/2003
Subj: send some more poem

I need some beautiful poem to make friendship.

You might search my poetry section, for a poem that will suit your needs. I make no guarantees as to the sort of friendships that you might make with them.
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From: Kendell Hyde
Date: 02/25/2003
Subj: coincidence

Just a note.

I found your page when trying to find information on the human genome.

Born in 1935 —- So was I.

Home town, Hyde — My name, Hyde

BS in Math — Me too.

Copious writer —- Not me.

The End

Just so. It is not wise to examine apparent coincidences too closely. Sometimes they are not coincidences at all.
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From: Nancy Handy
Date: 03/03/2003
Subj: Goldberg’s Pizza

I found your site with Larry Goldberg’s pizza recipe.

I used to eat at Goldberg’s Pizza once a week from 1976 till when the building was no longer there. I went there before I met my husband, took him there, we took our kids there, and I chose to celebrate every Mother’s Day there after we moved into the suburbs.

I know that there used to be 3 Goldberg’s locations, but 2 had closed just leaving the one on 2nd Avenue at 53rd street. I also know that Larry sold the place even though he was a greeter for many years. We became friendly with one of the partners he sold it to, John, who lived in Plainview, Long Island. We used to talk about what his kids and our kids were up to. We never asked his last name because we never imagined his place would close.

I have a feeling that he’s opened another pizza place and I’d like to make that our new destination. Do you have any info on whether the John and his partner opened another place – he was actually thinking of opening another place on Old Country Road in Plainview but there were legal difficulties with the building. I’m sure he’s opened elsewhere. Do you know where he opened another place? Do you have any info as to either partner’s full names so we can look them up? I can’t even find info on Larry Goldberg, who was long out of the picutre but I was hoping he might have some info on their next pizzeria.

Please send me any info you have or forward my email to them. We spent many, many years patronizing their establishment. In fact, we used to schedule our work lunches for 11:30am on Fridays just to beat the lunch lines there. Other times we’d meet there on Friday nights. I miss their pizza terribly. No other pizza compares.

Thanks for any info you can provide.

I’m sorry, but as far as I know they haven’t reopened anywhere. If I hear otherwise I will let you know.
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This page was last updated March 23, 2003.
It was reformatted and moved February 20, 2006

table of contents
March 2003 TOC
Archived letters