At the London Review of Books: August Kleinzahler on Hugh Hefner, as perpetually obnoxious, leering 14 year old!

Mr Kleinzahler’s dismissal of Mr. Hefner reeks of disdain, yet he was, as semitone has indicated, not quite consistent in his application of that emotion.

Some of Mr Kleinzahler’s readers are old enough to recall an old television show done by Mike Wallace:

Between June 1961 and June 1962 he hosted a New York–based nightly interview program for Westinghouse Broadcasting[12] called PM East for one hour; it was paired with PM West, 30 minutes, hosted by San Francisco Chronicle television critic Terrence O’Flaherty. Westinghouse syndicated the series to television stations it owned and to a few other cities.

I was one of the viewers of that show, as I was a rudderless high school dropout with a penchant for television. My brother and I would turn on that TV just to watch the test pattern. We were so enamored of this beautiful box! , yet compared to today’s juvenile fixations, quite mild.

To get to my point, I recall, sometime in the early 60’s watching a segment of PM East in which Gloria Steinem became a ‘Bunny’ , I think she even wore a costume and received training for doing the ‘Bunny Dip’, all recorded on black and white film. Ms.  Steinem and Mr. Wallace had a humor laced discussion about the ‘Bunnies’ after the film segment, Mike puffing on his signature cigarette.

Here is a link to her 1963 Show Magazine ‘undercover report’ on ‘Bunny Life‘:

Steinem told Hefner during the interview that ‘there are times when a woman reading Playboy feels a little like a Jew reading a Nazi manual.’


P.S. I forgot to provide a link to my post, I went back to copy that link and found that my comment had been removed, and or didn’t pass ‘moderation’. Challenging the narrative that Kleinzahler constructed, of Gloria Steinem as ‘Feminist Heroine’ was too much. History is only inconvenient to those who wish to re-write it. (October 06, 2017: 6:16 AM PDT)



About stephenkmacksd

Rootless cosmopolitan,down at heels intellectual;would be writer. 'Polemic is a discourse of conflict, whose effect depends on a delicate balance between the requirements of truth and the enticements of anger, the duty to argue and the zest to inflame. Its rhetoric allows, even enforces, a certain figurative licence. Like epitaphs in Johnson’s adage, it is not under oath.'
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