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« Happy Hanukkah! | Main | Overheard here in Petticoat Junction »


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My favorite of those witty New York quotes was Alice Roosevelt's: If you don't have anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me.

A woman after my own heart.

Mike Schilling

Alexander Wolcott, crowing over his new book: "Ah, what is so rare as a Wolcott first edition?"

Instant response: "A Wolcott second edition."

M.A. Peel

I am an Aleck fan, and actually have While Rome Burns in my office to dip into when the going gets tough. But we should mind our w's, o's, l's and t's here: there is Mr. Alexander Woollcott, our own Mr. James Wolcott, and Mr. Derek Walcott, the West Indian poet/playwright--and they are not interchangeable :) (No offense to you, Mike.)


That is so cool... the table! Years ago, I read in one of the Marx brothers' autobiographies (can't remember if it was Groucho's or Harpo's, the latter a sometime member of the Round Table) of a card game Harpo taught the Table, called "Pinchie Winchie." As I recall it involved pinching another player's nose, and was a variation on the old binoculars gag that leaves the victim with raccoon eyes. Apparently Woollcott thought it was hilarious... but then, he was in love with Harpo. (And who wasn't?)

Mike Schilling

Drat. I actually had it spelled right before I "fixed" it.

Grant Barrett

That was Harpo's autobiography, "Harpo Speaks." He tells some great stories in there. One of them took place when cross-continental air travel was still very new and expensive. On a lark—completely spur of the moment—Harpo and pal (I can't remember who) flew from LA to New York, took the train upstate to where Wolcott was summering, ran out onto the croquet pitch where Wolcott was concentrating and preparing to whack a ball, mooned him without saying a word, repantsed, and then turned right around and immediately headed back to the train station, New York City, the airport, and then back to LA.

Grant Barrett

One thing: by "half a package" and the "chubbed up" response, I assume they mean the woman was snorting coke. Or is this some new way of saying "drunk"? Both meanings to don't quite correspond to what I've seen elsewhere for "package" and "chub up."


I found a good picture of the Vicious Circle. And I have placed "The Round Table" on the side bar. It was truly a nice night.


This sounds like one of those evenings where I wish you had been both confident and impertinent with a digital camera. We want to see it.

Kevin C. Fitzpatrick

Sorry to burst your bubble, but the round table in the Round Table Room only dates to 1998. The hotel lost the original table decades ago; the current table was installed when the lobby was renovated in 1998.

I've led the Vicious Circle walking tours from the hotel since 1999.

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