Tuesday, October 14, 2014

ann borkin

                                   In Memoriam:  Pal George

Here are a few random, incomplete and probably distorted memories I have of George Manupelli:

1.  For a period of maybe two, maybe one, maybe three years in the mid or late sixties, almost every Tuesday or Wednesday  George would pick me up and we'd drive to the races:  the trotters, the ones where the horses pull carts and drivers.  George taught me enough about these races so that after a few months I could read the programs and predict the favorites, a strategy that avoided dramatic losses but also tended to avoid large gains.  George himself operated on a system that I didn't understand:  intuition, I suppose, and nostalgia, as well as careful personal pre-betting inspection of horses and drivers.   I think he did pretty well - ok -  but I don't remember. 

2.  During the same era, on one Saturday morning, George, Rick Waters and I had a foot race, racing each other down some Ann Arbor road --- I don't remember which.

George won handily.  Rick and I ended up walking and chatting, while George ran and ran hard.  And won.  What was that all about?  I think it may have had a Billie Jean King aspect to it.  I know I was the challenger and that I had expected to win because I smoked less than the other two, though none of us had raced or run on foot since childhood.

3.  George taught me this about hand printing on homemade signs or in other hand-printed communications,  efforts when you want the printing to be clear and to look more sophisticated than your average garage sale signs:

PICK A FONT, ANY FONT.  Use the newspaper or a book at hand if you want, or choose a font that your software offers, and  use that font as a model,  copying it carefully, faithfully and consistently.  DO NOT MIX FONTS.

4.  Frank Cassara was my etching teacher in whatever year it was that JFK died.  Professor Cassara had a hand stamp to encourage students who had made a good start  on a particular print:  it read I APPROVE, CARRY ON.  I described it to George, who found the idea hilarious and who subsequently stole one (or the only?) stamp from Cassara's office.  I don't know if he ever used it (or returned it, for that matter).

5.  In our respective old ages, George and I signed messages to each other with "Yer Pal."  That's why I want to sign off with this:

For George, In Memoriam,
Yer Pal, Ann


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