Too many of my blog posts have been about the deaths of people who interacted with (MORE), the 1970s journalism review that is the subject of my dissertation. But I suppose that is a risk of writing about people who were already in the public eye 40 years ago. My previous post was about the death of Peter Kaplan, the New York Observer editor: urbane, well loved. This one is about the death of Al Goldstein, the publisher of Screw magazine: often reviled and gloriously profane. (Though they did have sex in common, since Kaplan hired Candace Bushnell, author of Sex and the City.)
Goldstein was never shy about self-promotion, and he was indignant (or feigned indignation) at being excluded from a monthly feature in (MORE) that covered the New York media. The section was always surrounded by a black border into which were set the logos of major New York-based news outlets, both local and national: The New York Times, the local network affiliates, local news radio stations. The Village Voice, even. Goldstein was (pretending to be?) appalled that (MORE) didn’t include the logo for Screw among them.
This is unforgivable and unresponsive [did he mean irresponsible? –KL] since SCREW is the largest underground paper in the world with a circulation of 122,000 copies.
For you to preclude the listing of our logo is to make a moral judgment and we feel something inconsistent with the aspirations of (MORE).
The language is amusingly grandiose and malaprop-laden. But (MORE) humored him (or took humor from running his letter), and at least pretended to discuss the matter:
[W]e do intend to take up Goldstein’s request at upcoming meetings of both our editorial board and our board of directors. And since it is impossible to predict how these bodies will rule on the matter, we can make no commitment for the long run. Our discretionary power, however, does aloo us to run the logo just this once, and in a spirit of fair- and open-mindedness here it is: