Friday, December 07, 2007

Friday Night at the Radio!

In commemoration of today's date, here's Words at War: "They Call it Pacific." Based on "bulky, handsome" AP reporter Clark Lee's adventures in the days just before and after Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, this one will blow you away (10 July 1943).

And a regular, Information Please. Anecdotage:
The pianist and wit Oscar Levant was introduced to [Robert] Lowell by a mutual friend. Like the poet, Levant suffered from periodic mental illness:

We all had dinner in the Oak Room at the New York Plaza Hotel. Lowell was slightly sloshed and garrulous, but he looks the way a poet should look . . . .

"I've been committed to twelve sanitariums," he announced with an air of triumph. "How about you?"

Who counts? "Ten," I said at random. I didn't want a contest.--New Oxford Book of Literary Anecdotes, from Levant's autobiography, The Unimportance of Being Oscar.
So naturally an Information Please with Oscar Levant on the panel. This is an old one (26 May 1938), from before Levant became a regular on the show. John Gunther and Bernard Jaffe are also in attendance.

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