“The Good Times” – 1939
Arnold Gibson (Gibby), Charlie Kurtz and Carl Wayne
The Red Horse Station
Hi there—- how’s Alaska, and the three of you . . . Pardon the spacing, it’s the typewriter not me that is slipping . . . Came up last night for a quiet weekend in the “country”. Went to sleep on the porch last night to the soothing tones of “Roll out the Rain Barrel” on the pianola-piano and the voices of softly caroling girls. Was going to take Mother and your Aunt Dorothy down to New Rochelle this morning leaving at 9:30 AM, to look at a new apartment, but unfortunately awoke with the Blue Jays and dozed a moment to find that it was already nine o’clock. So we left at 9:30 AM Pacific time. Meanwhile your Aunt Elsie had phoned that she was at the Bridgeport station — coming up to celebrate her 17th (I think it was) birthday, so your father went down, they must’ve gone to church or something for it was an hour or so before they got back for breakfast. About the time they arrived we left, making a hasty 3 1/2 hour trip and getting back here for such a party and extravagant layout of “vittles” as I have not seen for some time. Turkey and ham and a million ears of corn, plus ice cream, sweet potatoes, Elsie’s birthday cake and nice gravy. There were plenty of chefs and good ones. Your father was magnificent, all in white . . .asterisk . . . asterisk . . .asterisk . . . Late this afternoon your brother Alfred took us on an enjoyable ride to the airport at Stratford which I had never seen, and we watched a lot of Mono planes making Mineola takeoffs and landings. I mean slow landings — the kind where they would wreck themselves in the wind gusts of South Texas or Brazil . . . asterisk . . .asterisk . . .asterisk . . . I thought when I sat down here that I might have some thoughts come as I wrote, but it hasn’t, so I will close, hoping you are all fine and having a grand and busy time.
On the assumption that you must get tired now and then getting the same old line from your Dad I try, when the opportunity presents, of varying the tempo by running in some guest speakers — with what result, this trip, you have visual evidence here with.
Carl (Wayne) is evidently getting disgusted with the gasoline situation here in the East because yesterday he stopped me to ask if one of you would write him seriously and fully just what the opportunity would be for him to pull up stakes here and anchor at Anchorage. He added he is really serious about the thing and hoped I would make this fact plain to you when I wrote, as he was intending to write you to the same effect himself and wanted his serious intent really emphasized.
Zeke tells me he is now getting a $1.05 an hour and has been given a new job as tool setter with possibly an advance when he starts on it a week from tomorrow. Singer is doing some government work so they expect to be busy for some time to come.
Since the pianola (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Player_piano)has been fixed up Dave is been spending all his spare cash and buying new pianola rolls. As Burton mentioned in his note, we had quite a few of the old gang here last night singing to various roles he had recently purchased. His latest acquisitions are Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, Dance of the Hours, Daddy, Down By The Old Mill Stream, Sleepy Serenade, Toreador’s Song, etc. I am rather pleased at his selection.
Rufus Burnham invited us all up to Fisher’s Island this weekend, but because of Elsie’s birthday celebration we were unable to go. He later telephoned to the office when I was out. Dave answered the phone. Rufus said something about our coming up next weekend, but no definite arrangements have been made so far. Burton has just informed me that they are taking the apartment in New Rochelle they looked at this afternoon and that therefore this week will be there last at Trumbull.
Because of the unsettled business conditions here in the East, and because so many of the Bridgeport factories are loaded up with orders three and four years ahead, there does not seem to be much demand for advertising services. This was the thought behind my inquiry as to the opportunities for someone like myself in Alaska, the thought being that with the lean pickings here from a business standpoint, George could carry along the reduced volume of work at the office until such time as things picked up again and I could return with some assurance of an adequate income, perhaps renting the house here in the meantime and getting something to do in Alaska to give me a living wage in the interim. Perhaps your letter to Carl regarding prospects could also be written in duplicate so that I could have some detailed information also to form the basis of a decision as to whether or not a move would be a wise one in my particular case. I would like to hear Dan’s version, as well as your own, Ced, on this whole question. So far it is only a vague idea and nothing in which I have been considering in a really serious manner. Your remarks as to the cold winters, Ced, are duly noted in this connection.
And so, like all material things, this letter to must and.
This weekend I’ll begin telling the story of Ced as he hitchhiked from Connecticut to North Dakota and Wisconsin to meet his Peabody relatives.