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November 1944

The Meditations of Old MR. Perelman on "Dynamic Drunks

In my painful profession, the sole point of which is to juxtapose familiar words into an unfamiliar pattern and thereby maintain a full head of steam in the boilers of my dependents, I have been thrown into contact with countless newspapermen. Most of these romantic and legendary creatures today, of course, are based on Hollywood, where they function as scenario-writers; the inconsiderable few who happened to be allergic to celluloid have gravitated into advertising, publicity, and radio. It goes without saying that the majority of them are not the noisy, colorful desperadoes of The Front Page but industrious, God-fearing tax-payers who like nothing better than a fast bout of parcheesi with their loved ones at eventide. Unluckily, as I look back on the pressmen I have known, my memory plays me a shabby trick. I cannot recall the quiet, sensible, prudent ones; all I remember is the series of dynamic drunks I have had the ill fortune to encounter at point-blank range, ever ready to share my last dollar with me, always eager for a romp that might result in a broken rib, a lawsuit, or a writ of attachment on my household goods.


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