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ERB 100-Word Drabbles
JULY II Edition :: Days 1 - 15
See Days 16 - 30 at ERBzine 7157a
by Robert Allen Lupton
With Collations, Web Page Layout and ERBzine Illustrations and References by Bill Hillman
LOOKING GOOD, JANE
July 2: On this day in 1990, actress Margot Elise Robbie was born in Dalby, Queensland, Australia. Margot portrayed Jane Porter in 2016’s “The Legend of Tarzan.” She reportedly refused to lose any weight to play the role.
Her many screen roles have been quite diverse, ranging from voicing “Flopsy Rabbit,” to Harley Quinn.
She received two BAFTA nominations for her performances in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Bombshell, and for the latter film, she was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture and Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role. In 2019, Forbes ranked her as the eighth highest-paid actress in the world, with an annual income of $23.5 million, and The Hollywood Reporter listed her among the 100 most powerful people in entertainment. She has her own production company and recently produced “Birds of Prey.”
“Looking Good, Jane” is today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs Inspired drabble.
LOOKING GOOD, JANEAlexander Skarsgard put on his shirt. “I hear you refused to diet for this movie. I worked out for months.”
“That’s your choice. Jane’s a healthy woman and should be portrayed as such, not a toothpick. It’s good for you to exercise, that’s healthy. Forced weight loss for a woman like me, isn’t.”
“You could have hit the gym.”
‘Jane isn’t musclebound nor a skinny waif. She’s a woman from the Victorian Age.”
‘Producers will always want us to change the way we look.”
I’ve got a solution for that. I’ll be my own producer. Would you like a chocolate?”
WHO, WHEN AND WHERE
July 3: On this day in 1949, actress Susan Penhaligon was born in Manilla. Her family returned to Cornwall when she was six years old. Susan played ERB's Lys LaRue in "The Land That Time Forgot," although the writers/producers/directors, who can’t leave things well enough alone, renamed her character, Lisa Clayton. Susan was known as the British Bridget Bardot. Say that three times fast. She wasn’t asked to appear in “The People That Time Forgot.”
She played Lakis in the Doctor Who story, “The Time Monster,” and has over 60 other acting credits between 1971 and 2018 including “Wycliffe”, “Sherlock Holmes and the Mask of Death,” “Remington Steele,” “Return of the Saint,” and “Count Dracula,”
She decided to undergo cosmetic treatment when she turned 60. She was unhappy with the results. “It was a complete wally to have it in the first place,'' she said. ''It very nearly had a disastrous effect on my career and on my confidence as a person. I will never go near it again. I'm simply going to let nature do what it will to me.''
The actress found fame in the 1970s comedy “No Sex Please: We're British” and the drama “Bouquet of Barbed Wire.”
“Who, When and Where” is today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs and Susan Penhaligon inspired drabble.
Actor John McEnery encountered Susan Penhaligon backstage at the BBC. “Amicus is making a sequel to “The Land that Time Forgot.” I wasn’t offered a role this time.”
WHO, WHEN AND WHERE
‘I wasn’t asked, either,” said Susan. “It would have been difficult. I’m playing Prue Sorenson on the telly in “Bouquet of Barbed Wire,” and next I’m in Dr. Who.”
“Susan, I know who. When?”
“First, it’s Dr. Who, when is this fall, and where is Hampshire and Berkshire.”
“I need work. Who’s the director?”
“No, who’s the Doctor.”
“Does the director have a name?”
“I don’t know.”
July 4: On US Independence Day in 1942, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ article, ‘Don’t Be Stupid,” was published in the Honolulu Advertiser. American forces had recently won a significant victory over the Japanese navy at Midway, and citizens across the islands were letting their guard down and celebrating. Burroughs reminded people that the war wasn’t over and the Japanese could still attack Hawaii again. Ships are small in comparison to the Pacific Ocean and an attack force could easily sneak through. Stay prepared.
The language in the article reflects the era when it was written. America was at war.
The entire article is available to read, unedited, at: https://www.erbzine.com/mag17/1756.html#dontbestupid
It’s possible that readers might compare the lessons in this article to the situation in the world today. That wasn’t my intention, but I can’t help it when people pay attention.
Today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs written drabble is named for the Boy Scout motto, “Be Prepared,” and it is taken from that article.
After the Battle of Midway, a man said, "Now we can throw away our gas masks!" This exemplifies the stupid complacency of the general public since our decisive defeat of a Japanese task force. Many people booked for Mainland evacuations have canceled their bookings. Attendance at drills of civilian defense organizations has fallen off.
Hitler said that we are stupid, but why risk our lives to prove that he’s right by assuming that we are in no further danger of attack and are warranted in relaxing.
Don't throw away your gas mask. Don't neglect your defense duties. Don't be stupid.
A PINCH OF COPENHAGEN
July 5: On this day in 1918, Edgar Rice Burroughs signed a contract for the publication of his book, “Tarzan of the Apes,” by Hasselbalch Publishing in Copenhagen, Denmark. The cover art is by Igor Korday, if I have the correct edition.
While doing this research, I found nothing on Hasselbalch, but perhaps someone in Europe can give me more information, but I did find two books with titles that I didn’t recognize. “Tarzan og Det Hvide Folk,” which translates as “Tarzan and the White Folk” and “Tarzan og Den Kjulte,” aka “Tarzan and the Hidden City” were published by Frederik E. Pedersens. I reached out to Fredrik Ekman and he tells me that, “Tarzan and the White Folk” is “Tarzan’s Quest” and “Tarzan and the Hidden City” is “Tarzan and the Forbidden City.” Other novels were retitled into Danish as “Tarzan’s Son,” and “Tarzan and the Doppelganger.” Pretty sure those are “Son of Tarzan” and “Tarzan and the Golden Lion.”
Today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs inspired drabble is “A Pinch of Copenhagen.”
“Dad, another of the Danish translations of your books arrived today. They changed the title again.”
A PINCH OF COPENHAGEN
Burroughs took the book from his son, John. “I don’t care when they change the title. I don’t speak or read Danish, but in their illustrations of Tarzan, he looks twelve years old.”
“Do you want me have this title translated?”
“There’s no point. The book is already in print. As long as it isn’t “Tarzan Tiptoes Through the Tulips,” I’m okay with it.”
“Nice phrase, tiptoe through the tulips. You want to copyright it?”
“No, it’s too silly to ever be worth anything.”
DRESS THE PART
July 6: On this day in 2016, “American Tarzan,” a competition based reality show debuted on The Discovery Channel. The series was, no doubt, timed to take advantage of the publicity accompanying the release of “The Legend of Tarzan.” Contestants competed in a series of races where they encountered several natural challenges, such as rivers, trees, and rock climbs. It would have been more realistic if the competitors had dressed like Tarzan and had to fight a lion or maybe an angry ape. I might have settled for an angry flamingo.
Here’s a pre-release blurb about the show:
“It’s a journey across four distinct terrains: jungle, coast, mountains and canyons. Over these challenging landscapes, the men and women must live completely off the land, while tackling punishing obstacles and facing conditions that early inhabitants faced hundreds of years ago, relying on nothing more than basic tools, mental toughness and physical strength.
Even getting to the island to begin with sounds rough; the competitors must kayak through open water to reach it. Once there, the first challenge will be to navigate an impenetrable jungle. Over subsequent weeks, challengers will traverse the jungle, cross raging rivers, climb towering mountains, all while foraging for food.”
The photo attached is a publicity photo of the initial contestants. Can’t say I’m a fan of the dress code. Khakis and cargo shorts just don’t say “Jungle Lord.” The contest was won by Jeremy Guarino, he’s the guy with the big hairdo and the beard.
Today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs inspired drabble is “Dress the Part.”
Pat turned off the television. “Well, John, that Jeremy dude won “American Tarzan.” What do you think?”
DRESS THE PART
“Nobody looked right. Tarzan wears a loincloth.”
“John, there were women competitors.”
“Maureen Sullivan wore semi-loincloth in “Tarzan Finds A Mate,” and if it’s good enough for Maureen…”
“Some of the stuff looked pretty difficult. Think you could do better?”
“You must be kidding. I haven’t been able to swing on a rope since I was ten. My idea of a hard day is when I have to change the batteries in my remote. Watching them wore me out. I need a beer.”
July 7: On this day in 2015, Dark Horse Comics published Edgar Rice Burroughs’ “Tarzan Omnibus Volume 1.” The 512 page paperback featured several Dark Horse contributions to the Lord of the Jungle. Highlighted in this omnibus are previously uncollected stories from Bruce Jones, Thomas Yeates, Timothy Truman, Al Williamson, Lovern Kindzierski, Darko Macan, Igor Kordey, and more! In this volume, Tarzan discovers a new form of helplessness when a deadly virus threatens Jane's life, races against Nazis to uncover an artifact of immense power, encounters classic characters from Victorian literature, and battles Martians in the twenty-fourth century! Collecting Tarzan #1-#20 and Tarzan: A Tale of Mugambi, this omnibus an essential addition to any Tarzan library! $21.00 on EBay and $24.95 from Amazon. All in color and less than a half penny a page. Such a bargain.
“Mugambi, Mugambi” is today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs inspired 100 word drabble.
Artist Igor Kordey asked writer, Darko Macan, “How’d you come up with the name, Mugambi? Sounds like the chorus from an old song.
“Not from the actor, Mugambi Nthiga or the writer, Mugambi Jouet. Both fine men, but they were’t my source.”
“You just made it up?”
No, Burroughs did. Mugambi was the giant Wagambi chieftain in “Beasts of Tarzan” and a Waziri warrior in “Jewels of Opar.”
“Darko, I still think you made it up.”
“No, Burroughs made it up and I created another way to use the name. We’re writers. That’s what we do. We make stuff up.”
STILL THE QUEEN
July 8: On this day in 2015, Edgar Rice Burroughs began to write “Beyond Thirty,” also published under the title, The Lost Continent.” The First World War was raging in Europe and there was a strong isolationist movement in the United States. Burroughs used that sentiment as a springboard for the story about Lieutenant Jefferson Turck of the Pan-American Navy and Victory, the semi-feral heir to the British throne. Queen Victoria had only been dead for 14 years.
It was rejected by the editor of "All Story" and first appeared in a New York newspaper, as a six-part serial in “The Evening Post” from November 15-20, 1915. All-Around Magazine published the novel in February 1916. Burroughs was mentioned on the cover, “Book length Novel by Edgar R. Burroughs, Author of “The Return of Tarzan.” The cover illustration by N. C. Wyeth was for “The Lost Vein,” a gold mining western by Edwin Bliss.
Burroughs wrote the book in 33 calendar days. Lloyd A. Eshbach, Fantasy Press Magazine published the first edition in 1957 with a 57 page typed and unillustrated volume. “Beyond Thirty and the Man-Eater" was published by Bradford M. Day (Science Fiction and Fantasy Publications) in 1957 with a Gil Kane illustrated dust jacket. Ace retitled the book, “The Lost Continent” and released it in 1963 with Frazetta cover art. The novel has been published by others, including Ballantine, Bison Books, and the House of Greystoke.
The Japanese cover for the book is included with this post. I expected Victory to be dressed less formally.
The drabble for today, inspired by Edgar Rice Burroughs is “Still the Queen.”
A lion attacked Jefferson Turck and Victory, the savage heir to the British Throne. The two fought together and killed the beast.
STILL THE QUEEN
Jefferson said, “I didn’t expect lions in Great Britain.”
Victory cleaned her knife. “This place is called Grabrittin and I am the rightful queen.”
“You talk funny.”
“What about when the Queen is wrong?”
“Say the rule slowly to yourself and listen to the words. I’m still the Queen.”
July 9: On this day in 1932, the autobiographical sketch, “Edgar Rice Burroughs Tells All” appeared in Rob Wagner’s Script magazine. The magazine published several of the short mysteries by Burroughs. “Tells All” is a humorous account of Burroughs’ adventures – entirely fictional in the manner of Baron Munchausen. ERBville Press used the title, “Edgar Rice Burroughs Tells All” for their 600+ page book, published in 2007 that collected numerous newspaper and magazine articles, stories, and poems by Burroughs.
In the article, Burroughs recounts his birth in China, where he lived in the Forbidden City. His family returned to America when ERB was ten. He was kidnapped by gypsies and they kept him for three years. ERB escaped at age 13, by killing the Gypsy King. He attend Yale University and was the collegiate heavyweight boxing and wrestling champion.
He was the sole survivor of the Battle of the Little Big Horn and joined Stanley in Africa to search for Livingstone, where he was captured and imprisoned by an Arab tribe for three years. He escaped the Arabs only to be captured by cannibals who also held a number of apes in captivity. Burroughs escape and made his way to Russia where he joined the Russian cavalry and met his wife, a lady-in waiting to the Czarina.
Read the entire article at https://www.erbzine.com/mag0/0052.html#4
Burroughs wrote today’s drabble, “Russian Interlude,” an excerpt from his “Tells All Autobiography.”
"I eventually made my way overland to Russia, where I enlisted in the imperial cavalry. A year later, I killed an anarchist as he attempted to assassinate the Czar; for this service I was made a captain of the imperial bodyguard.
While in his Majesty's Service I met my wife, a lady-in-waiting to the Czarina; and shortly after we married, my grandfather died and left me eight million dollars.
With my wife's fortune and mine, it was unnecessary for me to work; but I couldn’t be idle; so I took up writing, more as a pastime than as a vocation."
A DOGGONE SHAME
July 10: On this day 19 years ago in 2001, Caryl Lee Dearholt Chase, who went by the name, Caryl Lee Burroughs for a time, passed away. Caryl Lee was the daughter of Ashton Dearholt and Florence Gilbert, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ second wife.
Frank Purcer wrote an article about her for George McWorter’s Burroughs Bulletin # 65 and the article is available at https://www.erbzine.com/mag16/1637.html
Burroughs never formally adopted his stepdaughter, Caryl Lee, but he raised her as his own child. She barely knew her biological father. When Ed and Florence divorced, Florence remarried Dr. Albert Chase, and when asked by a judge whether she wished to be adopted by Dr. Chase her response was a vehement "Hell no!" The judge didn’t honor her request and she and her brother, Lee, were adopted.
She considered ERB to be her real father and referred to him as ‘Ebby.” In a 1968 interview with Irwin and Cele Porges, Caryl Lee said of her relationship with ERB: "I felt part of him . . . I mean, they can say he didn't legally adopt you, he's not your father . . . it doesn't make any difference. He is my father, he was my father. This man raised me, gave me my childhood."
Like her mother, Florence, Caryl married three times.
She was a premier animal trainer. During her long career Cindy worked for all of the major motion picture and television studios where she was variously known as Cindy Lee James, Cindy James Cullen and Cindy Cullen. She worked on “Harry and the Hendersons,” “Against All Odds,”and “Under the Rainbow.” She was a primary dog trainer for many of the Benji films. In the 1957 photo, Cindy is suspended in chair while her trained dog "Mr. Bones Buckshot" and actress June Allyson look on.
Contrary to persistent rumors, I could find no evidence that she ever trained a calot, a sorak, or a thoat. More’s the pity.
Today’s drabble, inspired by Edgar Rice Burroughs' stepdaughter is “A Doggone Shame.”
“I’m wondering why you never trained animals for a Tarzan film. You’re Edgar Rice Burroughs’ stepdaughter, after all.”
A DOGGONE SHAME
Caryl Lee answered, “I consider myself his daughter, but to answer your question, I specialized in dogs and horses, mostly dogs. Not many dogs in Tarzan films. From the late 50s through the 70s, Tarzan movies and television were filmed on location. I’m a southern California kind of girl.”
“What was your favorite film to work in?”
“The Benji series. I pitched “Benji meets Black Beauty” to MGM, but they passed. Too bad. It would’ve made a great dog and pony show.”
A MATTER OF PERSPECTIVE
July 11: On this day in 2004, Dorothy Hart, the tenth actress to play Jane, died of Alzheimer’s disease in Asheville, North Carolina. Hart played Jane opposite Lex Barker in “Tarzan’s Savage Fury.” She only made one more film after that, “Loan Shark,” with George Raft.
In 1952, Hart left acting to work with the American Association for the United Nations in New York. The organization's first female entertainer, she spoke at the United Nations, and was an observer at the 1957-1958 meeting of the World Federation of United Nations in Geneva.
The photo of Dorothy Hart is a publicity still from “Tarzan’s Savage Fury.”
“A Matter of Perspective” is the Edgar Rice Burroughs inspired drabble for today.
Sol Lessor said to Dorothy Hart, “Lex tells me that you won’t sign to play Jane again.”
A MATTER OF PERSPECTIVE
“That’s right. I’m committed to make “Loan Shark,” a film noire piece, with George Raft and then I’m done with Hollywood. Why do you care? You don’t want Jane in these films, anyway.”
“The fans want Jane. Are you going into television?”
“No, I’m doing something that matters. I’m joining the American Association for the United Nations.”
“I don’t have a clue what it does.”
“That’s alright, Sol. I expect most people at the United Nations haven’t a clue what you do, either.”
MAMA VERSUS MONSTER
July 12: On this day in 1998, “Movie Brats” began in the Tarzan Sunday comics. The story, written by Mark Kneece and illustrated by Gray Morrow ran for 14 Sundays. In the story, Tarzan sees a woman fighting an apelike monster and intercedes to save her. The monster turns out to be a man in a costume. The woman is angry because Tarzan ruined “her big scene.” She was supposed to kill the monster. The director isn’t happy either.
I wasn’t happy either. My perception of Tarzan as that he would have been able to smell the deception and wouldn’t have been fooled for a second.
The actress, Rita, has her two young sons, the movie brats, with her. They don’t listen to their mother and get into trouble in every episode. Near the end of the story, the boys encounter a real monster and momma, Rita, intercedes and kicks its butt. The female of the species and all that. Who could the real monster be?
Here’s episode #12 of 14. You can read the entire 14 episodes at:
Today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs inspired 100 word drabble is "Mama Versus Monster."
Rita Cross, the actress starring in “Jungle Girl,” told her sons, Buzz and Max. “Boys, stay near the movie set.”
MAMA VERSUS MONSTER
Buzz and Max, ignored her, followed Tarzan into the jungle, and were in constant danger. In the Cave of Woe, they encountered ‘Bedunga, the Beast.’
Buzz screamed, “The Beast’s real.”
Max yelled, “We’re trapped. Help.”
Rita, in Jungle Girl regalia, attacked and beat up the monster. After Rita and her boys left, Tarzan removed the Bedunga costume. The pygmy chief asked Tarzan, “You let her win. Why?”
“Well, she deserves their respect and a boy’s best friend is his mother.”
THANK YOU, MR. LION
July 13: On this day in 2994 in Loxahatchee, Florida, Steve Hawkes’ pet tiger, Bobo, escaped from Hawkes’ compound where he had several big cats. Hawkes (born Stjepan Sipek) played Tarzan in two unauthorized Spanish Tarzan Films, “Tarzan in the Golden Grotto” and “Tarzan and the Brown Prince.” Kitty Swan costarred in both films.
While filming “Tarzan and the Brown Prince,” a fuel spill caught fire near the set where Hawkes and Swan were tied down for a scene. A lion who’d been trained to free Sipek, did so, but not before both Hawkes and Swan were badly burned. Hawkes vowed to repay the lion by taking care of big cats and he opened a rescue sanctuary for them in Florida.
Unfortunately, Bobo was shot after escaping and Hawkes was charged for not having animal permits for all of his exotic cats. A week after Bobo escaped, Hawkes’ house caught on fire. His electric fences made it difficult for the firefighters. None of the animals were injured.
Today’s Edgar Rice Burroughs inspired drabble, with apologies to Johnny Cash, is “Thank you, Mr. Lion.”
Steve Hawkes visited Kitty Swan in her hospital room. “How you doing? I was burned pretty badly, but I heard your burns were worse than mine.”
THANK YOU, MR. LION
“I hurt. I’ll see a plastic surgeon next week. Thanks for carrying me away from the fire.”
“Well, everyone else panicked. I’m glad the lion freed us. I thought he’d run away. I owe him big time.”
Kitty nodded. “Me too.”
“I’m going to build a sanctuary for big cats. A rescue place where they can be safe. If anyone askes what I do first thing every morning, I’ll say, ‘I walk the lion.”
July 14: On this day in 1945, Liberty Magazine published the article, “Tarzan and the Man who Made Him,” by Lloyd Shearer. Liberty Magazine estimated the reading time of the article at 11 minutes and 42 seconds. The lead-in to the article says, “Broke at 35, Tarzan’s creator ran and typewriter and an encyclopedia into $10,000,000. Now almost 70 – and a war correspondent – he still uses the same tools."
Lloyd "Skip" Shearer was a celebrity gossip columnist. From 1958 to 1991, he wrote "Walter Scott's Personality Parade" in Parade magazine. In this column he used the name Walter Scott, and discussed rumors about celebrities using a question-and-answer style. Shearer also wrote profiles of famous people under his real name.
The entire Edgar Rice Burroughs article has been transcribed for easier reading on ERBzine.
Lloyd Shearer gets credit for today’s 100 word drabble, “Forever Amber.”
Tarzan is known to more people on earth than any other fictional character. Offhand, one would expect his creator to be well known to the public. But actually it's probable that Kathleen Winsor, the author of a single book, Forever Amber, is better known than Burroughs, perhaps because he has never had a novel banned in Boston.
He admits his stories have plenty of grammatical and factual boners. The critics may even rate Tarzan "as imbecile a piece of fiction," but he points out that his works sell, amuse, and entertain, and that's all they were ever intended to do.
WELL DRESSED WOLF
July 15: On this day in 1979, Travis Fimmel was born near Echuca, Victoria, Australia, to Jennie, a recreation officer for the disabled, and Chris, a cattle farmer. He was raised on a 5500-acre farm located between Melbourne and Sydney.
Travis Fimmel starred in the short Warner Brothers television series, “Tarzan,” alongside Sarah Wayne Callies as Detective Jane Porter. Fimmel had this to say about his role, “"The monkey stuff is pretty funny. As Tarzan, you can't really take him too seriously."
The series was cancelled after eight episodes. The show’s developer, Eric Kripke was thrilled at the cancellation and called his production “a piece of crap.”
Travis Fimmel, a former Calvin Klein model, has appeared in several films and TV shows. He played the lead role of Ragnar Lothbrok on “Vikings.” His current projects include “Raised by Wolves,” and “Die in A Gunfight.” ‘Raised by Wolves,” is a science fiction drama produced by Ridley Scott, as yet unreleased, and not to be confused with the British Comedy of the same name.
Episodes one and two of Fimmel’s "Tarzan" are available to watch online for free at https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x37w5nb
Today’s drabble is “Well Dressed Wolf.”
Ridley Scott said, “Travis, You’ll be perfect as Marcus in “Raised by Wolves.”
WELL DRESSED WOLF
“Not that silly British comedy?”
“No, this one’s science fiction. You’ll be great.”
“Because I played Tarzan, and was raised by apes, you think I’m a natural to play a wolf-raised child.”
“No, Travis. There aren’t any wolves. Androids who pretend to be human raise the children.”
“I don’t understand the title.”
“Androids pretending to be humans. Wolves in sheep’s clothing.”
“I’m more of a wolf in wolf’s clothing kind of guy.”
“I know. Every episode, you’ll bare your teeth and kill someone.”
“I can do that.”
See Days 16-30 at ERBzine 7157a
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