Paul V. Coates – Confidential File, Feb. 13, 1960
February 13, 2010 | 2:00 pm
Mash Notes and Comment
"Dear Mr. Coates:
"I would like a little information concerning one of your television programs.
"Did you, or didn't you, interview Senator Kennedy some time ago and did he say that he wore a toupee?
"Did he also say that he manufactures them and expects to pay for his campaign from what he earns in the business?
"I made this statement to a friend of mine and she repeated it to her friend, who is up in the air about it.
"She says that somebody started this rumor to make it tough for the Senator.
"If I made a mistake I wish to correct it because I meant no harm. I like Senator Kennedy very much and certainly wouldn't tell something that wasn't true.
"Please tell me if I am right." (Signed) Mrs. Mary Osborne, Pomona.
--It's his own hair, lady. Nobody would dare make a toupee like that.
(Press Release) "Actress Phyllis Standish overheard that if there is anything a nonconformist hates worse than a conformist, it is another nonconformist who doesn't conform to the prevailing standards of nonconformity!" (Signed) Larry E. Levin & Associates, 1356 N Vine St., Hollywood.
--That's what you get for eavesdropping, Big Ears!
(Form Letter) "Dear Subscriber:
"Suspense! It's important in a novel, exciting in a movie -- but only confusing when it comes to bookkeeping.
"Two months ago we entered your subscription to Harper's and billed you accordingly. But your bill, at this writing, remains unpaid.
"Strange things can happen to old bills. They make convenient bookmarks. Folded, they balance an unsteady coffee table. The backs are ideal for hasty notes to the mailman.
"In the event your first bill was misplaced, we are enclosing another with this letter.
"We would appreciate receiving your remittance. The suspense is killing our bookkeeper." (Signed) John Jay Hughes, Circulation Director, Harper's Magazine, New York City.
--Well, don't try to pin the rap on me. If I didn't kill him, some other deadbeat would.
(From Letter) "A gentleman's guide to being a gentleman.
"That's what this letter is. And in it you'll also find an opportunity to subscribe to America's most exciting magazine for gentlemen at a positively roguish price: one-half off.
"The magazine? What else but Esquire? . . ." (Signed) Esquire Magazine, Boulder, Colo.
--You call yourselves gentlemen? That poor bookkeeper at Harper's -- his body isn't even cold yet, and you're over here romancing me.
"Dear Paul Coates,
"My name is Oscar. I'm an 11-year-old dog.
"Can you do something for me? I want to go to Africa. I haven't got the money and it's too far to swim or walk.
"My master Capt. E.R. Tobias, is in the Army, on his way to Africa now. His wife is with him. The Army wouldn't let me go on a jet with them, I can go on regular planes or boats.
"That's my story. All I want is to surprise my master. I know he's grieving for me. Not as much as I am grieving for him, though.
"I can't eat. I can't sleep. I just sit at the front door and watch and hope. Can you help me get to Africa?" (Signed) Oscar, an 11-year-old dog. c/o Mrs. F.Kammer, Capt. Tobias' mother, 8840 S Walnut Way, Whittier.
--Oscar, that's a nice letter. Good grasp of syntax. And think of it -- you're only 11 years old!