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Paul V. Coates – Confidential File, Nov. 14, 1959

November 14, 2009 |  2:00 pm


Mash Notes and Comment

Paul Coates    "Dear Mr. Coates:

    "Humorous though your column about taking your wife with you to Japan was, I just wanted you to know that it did the hearts of many women good to have you come right out and say you are glad your American wife is as she is, and not the servile Oriental type.

    "We get so much silly drivel these days by men who want all the good things this modern world offers, yet evidently want wives of a bygone era, those 'dedicated to the needs of men.'

    "Thank goodness the best and smartest young men recognize there is much more to life and to marriage than simply having a woman to wait upon them.

    "Good for you.  You're a fine writer.  It was good to see a man write an honest column like that."  (signed) Ruth King, Los Angeles.

    -That was no man.  That was my wife.


Nov. 14, 1959, Roman Pochylski     (Press Release)  "It is said by the working psychiatric force that there is a very thin line bordering the genius from the moron.

    "It too follows in the field of comedy -- a microscopic boundary between the humorist as opposed to the ham hock.  But Tom Lehrer is a wit one cannot serve on rye.
"He is the master of the absurd, and the caustic.  At gatherings, he usually is referred to in chic conversation as the 'Elvis Presley of the Avante Garde,' and just as handsome.

    "Certainly no sideburns, but a faint Listerine scent about him that makes him wonderful to be near.

    "And Tom Lehrer is all man -- never swears, always tells the truth.
"Quite a strange phenomenon for a gentleman in the theater, one must admit.

    "Tom Lehrer and I first met through his record.  He recorded satirical ditties while teaching at Harvard.  Purpose of this was to make a little pin money to buy gas for his car.

    "I wore the grooves out in learning by heart his 'Masochism Tango,' 'When You Are Old and Gray' and the lifting 'Poisoning in the Park' -- and sang them constantly in the shower.

    "Seven years later, we met.

    "I told Tom my feelings and he understood -- for 200,000 other girls had worn out their records, too.

    "Having a competitive spirit, I decided to woo him.

    "One day, we spoke of marriage.

    "Tom told me with kindness that it was out of the question, for we weren't compatible . . . " (signed) Audrey P. Franklyn, Public Relations, Hollywood.

    --Those Listerine-users!  They turn their nose up at everything.


    (Press Release)  "Sen. John F. Kennedy is a man with an enormous head and a small body.
"At least, that's the way Kennedy's pretty wife, Jacqueline, says he would appear if she were drawing a picture of him.

    " 'He's much more serious than I thought he was before I married him,' says Mrs. Kennedy in an article in the current Look magazine.

    " 'He looks young,' she adds, 'but he's never been a boy.  After I got to know him, I went out and took a course in American history.' " (signed) Public Relations Dept., Look Magazine, New York.

    -Nothing wrong with his head, Mrs. Kennedy.  Give him a decent haircut and he'd look like the rest of us.