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05/21/2010 Entry: "5/21/2010: Letter from Charles A. Smith to Joe Roark October 19, 1988"

Letter from Charles A. Smith to Joe Roark October 19, 1988

Dear Joe,

Thanks for many things-- for the letter, the return of the Shoulder Bit material, for the Doug Hepburn 'article', the post card and news of the wedding. Hope that went off fine and the bride and groom will be happy-- really somthing to hope for in this lovely world we live in.

Enclosed is a copy of The BACK HANG GAZETTE run by Tony Cook. I am sending it since a statement by you in your latest REPORT to the effect that the Bent Press is a dead issue these days and not used any more, isn't quite so. It is alive and well, and possibly flourishing. Tony's little pot boiler is shoved out quarterly, and I do suggest you drop him a line. He may not reply directly but will do so in the pages of his mag. You might get sufficient to make a page or three for the report. Anyway, it is well worth having since it does take a very strong stand against steroids and for the lifter.

The Hepburn article disappointed me --what? Charlie Smith is non existent and had nothing to do with Doug winning the title. Can this be so? I did of writing to Lambert, but then, he is another of these cultured gents who doesn't reply to letters-- at least, not to those he thinks of people who are of no importance. I imagine if I was Weider or some well known lifter, he'd be kissing my arse in three quarter time.

Angry at my stiff being stolen by this guy named Brown? A rather delicate way of describing my utter rage. And it is STILL going on. Brother Lambert seems to have caught the disease. He already, by chance or otherwise, took a title from one of my series-- SO YOU WANT TO BE A WEIGHTLIFTER, called it 'So You Want To Be A Powerlifter' and had it in one of the Wonder Boy's mags M&F with the format of the article the same as my series on the three Olympic lifts. Then in the latest M&F he has an article on the MULTI POWER MACHINE, ascribing its invention to Weider-- it was MINE and I never got a penny for it. The article is also written in such a way that I KNOW he read my series on the piece of equipment, THE SCIENCE OF THE MULTI POWER MACHINE. But, of course, no mention of me.

By some strange chance, on the day the mag arrived, the Master Blaster phoned me. Said he had just got my letter I had WRITTEN IN MARCH that he was (again) bringing me to L.A. 'SOON.' I called him over the Multi Power article, saying that he knew very well it was my idea for the machine and didn't he have the common decency to set the matter straight. His reply. 'Well, they do that to me. They don't mention that I INVENTED THE FORCED REPS AND THE SPLIT ROUTINE.' At this point words failed me -- a rare occasion--since these so called principles were being used decades before the Wanking Wunder was lifting anything heavier than a baby's bottle.

You now have all the Aussie mags in my possession. That is all that were published before it ceased. Modra, so I am told, has lost his all.

Now for some advice. Please do not take this as criticism Joe. I do think you are very mistaken in continuing to mention that you may not continue with the REPORT. Or that you are becoming a tad disenchanted with putting it out. This is an error, since people will not feel inclined to subscribe to a mag that looks as if it might go out of business.

Bill Lowry. To what do you refer when you ask if I have found his writing reliable. True, in the old days I did read him in the old H&S. and it is also true that he did a lot for British lifting as an official and guardian of the BAWLA. He had a reputation for being very straightforward, although somewhat strict and 'hew to the line' where his reffing was concerned. He was another of those 'distant' British officials before whom the lifters qualied(sic) and trembled. I am sure that George Kirkley could tell you more about his personal life than I. George does answer letters, although some months after you write him. A reason here, since he is having lots of bother with his wife, who has been non compos mentis for some time now, and George has to take care of her, being unable to leave her on her own. Great pity. George is a good guy.

Yes, you did ask me about Joe Price--A North County of England Chap. I have heard of the Vulcan Curse(sic)- a take off of Edward Aston's Anti-Barbell Leverage course-- ain't nottin new Joe. I know little re the marketing of it apart from Pullum being in some way connected with it. Sly old Bill.

I know full well you can't speak for Lambert and as to whom he does or does not write. My comments were made to display my frustration and annoyance at the plain discourtesy of some people.

[I will not identify this man because as it turns out there was a solid and understandable reason for the behavior explaining in the next few words]
BE CAREFUL OF THIS BIRD. He is all for himself and the hell with others. Willoughby hadn't been dead a week when he was pestering Carol asking how much she wanted for David's collection. No rumor this. I have SEEN THE LETTER HE WROTE. It is in the [Todd-McLean] Collection. May be I am too straight laced for my own good, but this sort of thing rubs me the wrong way. Where I come from, this is looked on as in very poor taste.
Please write, Best, Chas.