Update From A Neighbor On A Gleaned Book

I gleaned an old hard-covered compilation of Playboy articles on my block in Brooklyn a while back and posted an excerpt from it. In the photo caption, I mentioned that the great name “Stella Bugbee” was inscribed inside, presumably the previous owner. Stella came across the post and sent me the email below. Thanks for the free book, Stella! The email:

“Hi There. I saw on your blog that you gleaned my old Playboy interviews book. Pretty great, no? I had to get rid of a lot of my things last year and that one didn’t make the cut. But I’d had it for about 20 years. Glad it went to a good home!

Stella Bugbee”


Original post, September 1, 2010:

Gleaned: The Twentieth Anniversary Playboy Reader (1974)

"Stella Bugbee" is inscribed on the inside flap. The previous owner, I suppose. There's a designer by that name, but I don't know if it's the same person.

I gleaned this book a few blocks from my Brooklyn apartment just yesterday. It’s a beat-up hardback copy (sans dust jacket) of a Playboy compilation of interviews, fiction, reportage and humor from the era when Hefner put out a great publication that attracted the best writers. This collection features work from Woody Allen, Murray Kempton, Joyce Carol Oates and Vladimir Nabokov.

One brief, interesting piece from 1971, “World 42-Freaks 0,” recounts conservative author Garry Willis’ visit to a Canadian commune, where he mostly found “dope, dirt and self-indulgence.” An excerpt about a drug deal gone awry:

“A car door slams–Tony, back from taking Dani to the city. His hair is short, the Army crew cut still growing out: his tanned, thin arms are scribbled over with ‘good ole boy’ unsophisticated tattoos. His eyes light up at the sight of two motorcycles, and he kicks one off into the field, wheels slipping as he bangs off thin deciduous trees, then races halfway up the incline till the loose grass and leaves throw him, laughing crazily. the motor kicks and coughs itself to rest on the ground.

‘Bombed out of his head,’ Al mutters. ‘He was supposed to deal some dope in the city, but he got high on the first batch. Well, it always happens. When people first come over the border, they have to stay high for a couple of weeks before they can get themselves together.’ Tony deserted last week, when his company was preparing to ship out for Vietnam. ‘That mean we’ll have nothing but rice and salad for dinner tonight.'”