Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Benchley is Coming to Your House!

The Athletic Benchley is available in both hard and soft cover editions.

Order now and receive your copy of this historically important yet lighthearted book of Robert Benchley's humor.

Some of these articles have never been seen except by Detroit Athletic Club members. Some were modified to appear in Robert Benchley's books.

Now, for the first time, the original versions of 105 of Robert Benchley's Detroit Athletic Club News articles - with the original illustrations - are available in book form.

Plus . . .

Be among the first 250 people to purchase The Athletic Benchley and receive a free copy of the 2009 Benchley Award Winner Ed Tasca's new comic novel, Lub Dub:
"Love stories wrapped up like a valentine into one long, frantic chase scene."

For more information, or to order see theathleticbenchley.com

Events in NYC for Dorothy Parker Society

Dorothy Parker Society friends and lovers in New York City, can enjoy two events this week. Both involve live music and cocktails in vintage settings, uptown and downtown. Make plans on Thursday and Saturday night to come out for a great evening. Read on!

The Last Thursday Series in the Borsalino Room is Thursday, May 27, with a very special performance by Karen Oberlin. She is a Bistro and MAC Award winning jazz-pop vocalist, recently described by Stephen Holden in the New York Times as having “impeccable classic pop style…musical intelligence…arresting and perfect moments (with) beautifully shaped, delicately voluptuous phrasing.” In addition, five other special guest vocalists will be performing.

The venue is underneath FlĂ»te (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;flutebar.com), the popular Champagne lounge in Gramercy Park (40 E. 20th Street) in its underground private cabaret room. The Dorothy Parker Society (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;dorothyparker.com), New York’s #1 literary association, is the evening’s sponsor. The musical director and accompanist is the incomparable William Zeffiro, the man behind the hit show “The Road to Ruin” at the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

Appearing at the Last Thursday Series on May 27 at 8 pm:

• Karen Oberlin (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;karenoberlin.com), is performing at the Algonquin Hotel for three weeks in June. She is a 2010 MAC award nominee for outstanding vocalist of the year. Bistro Award winner. She has appeared at major New York venues such as Jazz at Lincoln Center, Town Hall, Iridium Jazz Club, Feinstein's, Merkin Hall and The Metropolitan Room.

• Kristin Maloney (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;kristinmaloney.com), performed Off Broadway as Dorothy Parker in a mini-tour of Ginny Redington/Tom Dawes musical, Talk of the Town, as well as a full year at the Algonquin. Kristin made her principal debut at New York City Opera in the Glimmerglass Opera co-production The Glass Blowers as comic soubrette Rose Green.

• Adam MacDonald (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;adamjmacdonald.com), also starred in Talk of the Town, as Robert E. Sherwood, MacDonald has performed in the national tour of My Fair Lady.

• Danielle Erin Rhodes (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;myspace.com/danierhodes), a pianist, composer, and songwriter has performed twice at the New York Musical Theater Festival. Danielle toured all over the world with such shows as Grease and Oliver!

• Libba Bray (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;libbabray.com), author-vocalist Bray has written hit novels for teens including Going Bovine and Rebel Angels, and she is making her cabaret debut.

• Marnie Klar presented her New York solo cabaret debut at Don't Tell Mama in December.

Table reservations for the Last Thursday Series are encouraged (212-529-7870). There is no cover with a 2-drink minimum. Must be over 21 to attend.

Then on Saturday, May 29, is the monthly Wit’s End party at Flute Midtown (205 West 54th St). The party starts at 7 pm. All info and photos here: http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;clubwitsend.com

Celebrate the vibrant history of America this Memorial Day weekend at the Star Spangled Soiree! Patriotic vintage dance tunes brought to you by favorites SKY BLUE & JESSE SELENGUT (http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;jesseselengut.com)!

Free Hors D'Oeuvres 7pm-8pm...come down early and have dinner at Flute!

FREE BEGINNER DANCE LESSON – 830 pm! Jeri Lynn Astra helps you tap those toes!

Come in your finest vintage patriotic attire - 1910s/1920s/1930s/1940s! Bring out that red, white, and blue and enjoy dancing and have some vintage cocktails with us!

There is a $12 cover. Must be over 21 to attend.

Check out http://www.facebook.com/l/66c44;dorothyparker.com for more news about summer events, including Parkerfest in August.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Register Now for July 16-18 Robert Benchley Society Annual Gathering

The Seventh Anniversary Annual Gathering of the Robert Benchley Society will be Friday through Sunday, July 16-18, 2010, in Boston.

The Boston We've Come for the Davenport Chapter of the Robert Benchley Society has planned an outstanding weekend packed full of events for this the Seventh Anniversary Annual Gathering of the Society. This is the first time back in Boston for the Society since the very successful 2005 Annual Gathering and we hope to top that event.

This year's Annual Humor Awards Dinner will be held aboard the Secret Love. This handsome yacht has the charm and amenities that define private yachting. She features luxurious finishes and state-of-the-art electronics, a full galley, and multiple dining layouts. Secret Love has a large and airy salon. For the guests wanting to take in the ocean breezes, the large aft-deck, spacious bow and expansive fly-bridge offer ample seating -- the perfect locations for cocktails under the stars.

At this event Ed Tasca of Toronto, Ontario and of Mexico will be presented with the Robert Benchley Award for Humor. In addition to Mr. Tasca's first place entry,"Let’s Click Up the Old Gang Sometime", we'll be honoring our medalists in this year's competition, which was judged by Kevin Fitzpatrick. They are Brenda Pontiff of Los Angeles, Calif. for "A Teensy Weensy Renaissance", Con Chapman of Weston, Mass. for "Foundations of Western Logic", and B. Elwin Sherman of Bethlehem, N.H. for "A Woman At Home".

Dress for the private dinner cruise on the Secret Love is optional black tie and/or 1920s-1940s period.

On Friday, July 16th you'll gather for a private cocktail party at a poolside cabana at the Clubs at Charles River Park. If there is interest we'll catch Kris Knievil and the Miss-Leading Ladies at the late night show at Jacques Cabaret.

Did Boston roar in the 'twenties? Find out on this walking tour designed to show off buildings and sites in Boston associated with Robert Benchley, Dorothy Parker, and other note-worthy or notorious characters of the 1920s. A couple of the sites at the beginning of the tour may be familiar to those who went on the 2005 Boston walking tour, but the rest of the route and narrative are completely new and will include things that even most Bostonians are not aware of, such as the Niles Building, out of which Charles Ponzi ran his eponymous scheme. Don't miss this Saturday event!

Also on Saturday we have arranged for a hall to meet in where any Robert Benchley Society member with a book in print or coming out soon will be able to display, sign, and sell books. Just let us know ahead of time that you need space on the program to promote your book.

On Sunday we'll be in Boston's North End, the "Little Italy" of the hub city, for the Processione San Rocco. Even if you've been to other Italian feasts, you will be in for a treat. Those of you who have never been to an outdoor Italian festival don't know what you've been missing. Boston is world-famous for our Italian feasts.

Don't miss this event, which will be the largest 2010 gathering of Robert Benchley fans. Commitments to attend have already been made by members of Robert Benchley Society Chapters in–
  • Ann Arbor, Mich.,
  • New York City,
  • Washington State, and
  • several members from the Boston and Providence area

For more information and for registration see our website 2010 Annual Gathering Registration Page.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

2010 RBS Annual Gathering and 2009 Humor Award Dinner *** PLUS 2010 Humor Award Competition Update

The Robert Benchley Society announces plans for the Seventh Anniversary Annual Gathering, Friday through Sunday, July 16-18, 2010, in Boston, Massachusetts. The highlight of the event will be the Saturday, July 17th dinner cruise aboard a private luxury yacht. We are finalizing plans and expect to post prices and registration details shortly.

2009/2010 RBS Award for Humor Winner, Ed Tasca
The highlight of the event will be the Annual Award Dinner and Ceremony, Saturday, July 17th. This year's first place winner is Ed Tasca, of Toronto, Ontario and an undisclosed location believed by the authorities to be in Mexico, for his entry Let’s Click Up the Old Gang Sometime. Of Ed's essay, final competition judge Kevin C. Fitzpatrick says "It is an original and lively writing on a new topic, social networks.”

Kevin has been a past judge of the competition. He is the president of the RBS Fascinating Crimes RBS chapter in New York. In 1999 he founded the Dorothy Parker Society and serves as president. He is the author of "A Journey into Dorothy Parker's New York" and with Nat Benchley, is the co-editor of the new book "The Lost Algonquin Round Table" (Donald Books-iUniverse). Link for the book: http://www.donaldbooks.com/catalogue.html

Other winners in this competition are:

Kevin Fitzpatrick
The preliminary judges of the competition were author of Robert Benchley An Annotated Bibliography, Gordon E. Ernst; writer and RBS Director, Eileen Forster Keck; puzzle designer RBS Vice Chairman, Chris Morgan; 2007 RBS Humor Award winner, Daniel Montville; radio personality and chairman of A Moderate State of Preservation Chapter (Ann Arbor, Mich.) of RBS, Tom Saunders; RBS Director Pamela Siska and Robert Benchley Society Chairman David Trumbull.

Preliminary plans for this year's gathering were set during a recent tele-conference among Horace Digby (2005 RBS Humor Award Winner), Kevin Fitzpatrick, Wiliam Goldsmith (Chairman of the "Uncle Edith Chapter" RBS Chapter in Los Angeles), Chris Morgan, Tom Saunders, David Trumbull, and Mary DiZazzo Trumbull


Details of how to enter this year's contest will announced at the Annual Gathering in Boston, July 16-18 and will be post online immediately following that event. The rules of the contest and procedures for judging will be the same, or very nearly the same, as they were for the 2009 contest, the winner of which will be recognized at the July 17 dinner.

RBS Los Angeles Chapter's Wm. Goldsmith Announces New Book

I’m You, or, The Clone and I
By William Goldsmith, M.D.

Meet the Author

Author William Goldsmith is a psychiatrist with a practice in Los Angeles. He retired as a flight surgeon in the Air National Guard and is a veteran of three wars.

Bring in the Clones

If you could clone yourself – or clone a loved one – would you do it? This fascinating novel takes a look into the future and what could happen if cloning is an option.

The questions the book asks are compelling and the scenario is very possible. I’m You or, The Clone and I provides a breathtaking look into what our world may become.

Twenty years in the future, Dr. Harry Saul agrees to be cloned. But the experiment takes on a life of its own, and Harry soon finds that it totally re-shapes his life and his character. The fertilized test-tube egg is implanted into Pam Rubin, a lesbian psychiatrist. But in the embryo stage, the parents learn their cloned child will be vulnerable to schizophrenia.

Harassed by the government for their daring attempt at cloning, the two doctors take refuge in the Army. Harry becomes an Army flight surgeon, a perilous and varied career, serving in the thick of a near war with China, a typhoid epidemic, and is marooned on an Alaskan glacier, loving every minute.

Despite their problems, Pam and Harry forge a loving relationship. But their cloned son, Phil, does become schizophrenic. In a desperate effort to cure his son, Harry volunteers himself as a donor in a mind-transfer experiment. This scary look into the future will keep you enthralled until the very last page.

Hard Cover - 6x9 - 202 pages - $24.50
ISBN: 978-1-60860-575-0
ISBN / SKU: 1-60860-575-2


Thurber House is Pleased to Announce the 2010 Summer Literary Picnics Line-Up

The Thurber House 2010 Summer Literary Picnics are scheduled and offer another fantastic summer line-up of outdoor picnics and readings with authors who have an Ohio connection.

Each picnic runs as follows:

5:20 p.m. - Guided tours of the house given by our Young Docents.

6:15 p.m. - Dinner is served. Order one of our festive catered dinners, made fresh by Party Panache catering, or pack your own.

7:00 p.m. - The reading begins. Thurber House remains open after the reading for tours, book buying, and signing.

Please bring your own lawn chairs or blankets. You are also welcome to bring alcoholic beverages. Parking is free after 6:00 p.m. at the meters along Jefferson Avenue. In case of rain, join us at State Auto Insurance, 518 E. Broad St. for all picnics except July 14, which will be next door at Thurber Center.

Wednesday, June 16: A Thurber TreatThe season will kick off with our annual Thurber Treat writing contest. This year writers, of any age, are asked to choose one Thurber cartoon from a predetermined selection and come up with a new caption and then elaborate on the caption with an amusing story. Cheri Mitchell, Executive Director of BalletMet, will be the host for the evening. The top three winners will read their entries.

Wednesday, June 30: Carrie BebrisCarrie Bebris is the author of the beloved Mr. and Mrs. Darcy mysteries, which are known for capturing perfectly Jane Austen's Regency England. She will read from the latest in the series, The Intrigue at Highbury (Or Emma's Match), a tale complete with robbery, murder by poison, and a family with perhaps something sinister to hide.

Wednesday, July 14: New Voices- Back by popular demand, Thurber House presents a Summer Picnic highlighting emerging authors of fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction. All three authors have been published, and all three are Ohio connected.

Fiction - Carla Buckley will read from her debut novel, The Things that Keep Us Here. With Columbus as a backdrop, it is a chilling and intimate look at one family's struggle as they try and survive a virulent pandemic that has paralyzed the world.

Poetry - Sarah Gridley is the author of two books of poetry, and has appeared in many print and online journals including Kenyon Review online and New American Poetry. She will share selected poems from her latest collection, Green is the Orator.

Non-Fiction - Paula McLain will read from her memoir, Like Family: Growing Up in Other People's Houses, a searing portrait of three young sisters who are raised as wards of the Fresno County court system. She has also written two books of poetry and the acclaimed novel A Ticket to Ride.

Wednesday, July 28: Craig McDonaldAward-winning journalist and crime writer, Craig McDonald is the author of the Edgar nominated Hector Lassiter series that includes Head Games and Toros & Torsos. He will read from the latest in the series, Print the Legend, a literary thriller about the death of Ernest Hemingway and the patina that perceived suicide lends the author's legend.

Wednesday, August 11: Sharon DaviesThe John C. Elem/Vorys Sater Designated Professor of Law at OSU's Moritz College of Law, Sharon Davies will read from her new book Rising Road: A True Tale of Love, Race, and Religion in America. It is a harrowing look at the all but forgotten murder of Father Coyle in 1912 Alabama, and the trial that followed.

Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop -- University of Dayton

The Bombeck Writers' Workshop has been scheduled to be on CBS Sunday Morning on Mother's Day, May 9. They just finished the 2010 Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop, and among the attendees were Mo Rocca and a film crew working on a piece about the workshop. The piece is scheduled to air this Sunday. More than 350 writers from all over the United States and Canada came to Erma Bombeck's alma mater, the University of Dayton, for three days of laughing and learning, and to lay the groundwork for staying connected in the months and years ahead.

Read all about it in this month's newsletter:


If you missed the workshop, you can still take advantage of a great offer to purchase recordings of the 2010 workshop. You can take the workshop with you as mp3 files, and our proceeds go to funding future workshops.

Robert Benchley Society

For more information about the Robert Benchley Society, local chapters near you, our annual Award for Humor, and our Annual Gathering, visit The RBS Website