Archive Number Two

This is the last updated version of the second
Spooldrippings page (July 1997-February 1999).
Information was added and deleted during that period..

Updated 28 January 2006

Lardner Family | Lardner on Stage | Quotable Lardner
No Respect | Figurative Lardner | Lardner in Books


Ring & I
Lardner Links

Old Spooldrippings:



Family Updates:


Lardners to add to the list
(if you're keeping one): Lonnie Lardner, daughter of Rex and granddaughter of Rex, grand-niece of Ring, Sr., is (or maybe by this time was--I don't watch it) a sports reporter for Fox TV.

Peter Lardner, eldest son of Ring, Jr. advises us to add to the list of writing Lardners Susan Lardner (eldest daughter of John), and Ann Lardner Waswo, Peter's sister (currently at Oxford University and the author of several academic volumes).

The original list, which includes James and George, Jr., can be found in the Spooldrippings archive.




Sarah Jessica Parker was not in June Moon.
June Moon Revivals, or Yardley was wrong (again): The last couple years have been good for June Moon, Lardner's collaboration with George Kaufman. In May of 1996, both the St. Jean's Players of the St. Jean Baptiste Catholic Church and NYU presented the play. The play was also preformed by The Porthouse Theatre of Kent State University in July and August.

The big break occured this January, though, when The Drama Dept., the theatre group that Sarah Jessica Parker belongs to, revived the play at the Ohio Theater. Their production received very good reviews and was recently awarded a Lortel award for best revival.

Twenty years ago, Jonathan Yardley characterized the play as a "period piece," and about the PBS production of the play said, "What was funny in the twenties was merely a curiosity forty-five years later." I guess another twenty years has made it funny again.

An older, cheaper production: In 1940 (24 MAR 40) the CBS radio program "Campbell Playhouse" hosted by Orson Welles, broadcast June Moon, starring Jack Benny as Stevens. From what I understand, Benny departed from the script and from the character, engaging the host Welles in a comic argument.

Bulgarian Lardner: Students at the American University in Bulgaria (AUBG) performed "The Tridget of Greva" a few years back as part of a series of one-acts.



Quotable Lardner

I did a search the other day to find out who is quoting Lardner and in what context. He is mentioned or quoted in many reviews of baseball novels, but he also pops up in some of the oddest places. Here's where I found him:

  • Alex Berlyne in the Jerusalem Post ("Can You Hear Me, Mother?" 26 APR 96) quotes the Lardner line, [some people think] "when the telephone rings it is against the law not to answer it," in an article about cell phone abuse.

  • In an article about the modernization of libraries I find: Mr. Cobb took me into his library and showed me his books, of which he has a complete set."

  • In an article about pets Mike Capuzzo quotes Lardner's "Dogs": When people ask me do I like dogs I say I'm crazy about them, and I think they are all right in their place but it ain't Long Island."

  • President Clinton's chattiness also provokes a Lardner quote. The LA Times (27 August 94) reports that Leon Panetta, on becoming Chief of Staff, gave Clinton some advice similar to Lardner's line, "Shut up he explained."

  • Joseph Sobran, a Senior Editor at National Review, also uses the "Shut up" line in an article defending his position on Israel.

  • And my favorite line comes from an article about unemployment (Brockway, George. "The NAIRU Delusion," Journal of Economic Issues, 1 SEP 95): "The severity of the natural rate doctrine may be, as Ring Lardner might have said, one of its charms." Really?



No Respect In Dan Nichols' "The Essential Baseball Library" page, he reprints "Larry Ritter's 50-book Essential Baseball Library. One book on the list is complimented as "perhaps the funniest baseball writing since Ring Lardner'; but--you guessed it--Lardner is nowhere to be found among the fifty.



Figurative LARDNER

The Similies Dictionary (Gale Research, 1988) uses Lardner several times. A couple examples follow:

  • [It] "attracted as little attention as a dirty fingernail in the third grade."

  • "Dancing with her must be a good deal like moving the piano or something."



Does anyone have Six Letters to an Apprentice (University of California, Riverside, Special Collections Department, 1994)? It is a limited edition reprint of letters from F. Scott Fitzgerald, Willa Cather, George Ade, Ellen Glasgow, Don Marquis, and Ring Lardner to Ernest Kroll, an aspiring writer who asked them for advice in 1930. I would be interested in what Lardner had to say, but not interested enough yet to spend the $150 for the book.



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