Join with Friends and Family to celebrate and remember

Lorraine Javna Bodger

Saturday, December 2, 2017

6:30 PM


The New York Society Library

53 East 79th Street

(just east of Madison Avenue)

Commemorating Lorrie’s love of all things Mexican,

we are building an Ofrenda (Mexican altar in honor of the dead) and strongly encourage you to bring a small memento

(a picture, a flower, something personal) as your own offering.


RSVP to as seating is limited.

In lieu of flowers, contributions to these institutions

would be welcomed:


The New York Society Library (Support the Library) | 212.288.6900 ext.214


The Samaritans of New York


Please see the full-color invitation, below:

Saddened to inform you…

Lorraine Javna Bodger died suddenly from a brain aneurysm on October 5th, 2017.

Lorrie will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved her. She remains in our hearts forever.

Details regarding an upcoming memorial service will be posted here shortly.

Death songs




A “death song” is traditionally sung before or after a death, in commemoration.

In 2014 we lost many important and  well-known writers whom we wish to remember. Many unsung writers died too—writers who were, perhaps, friends, relatives, lovers, acquaintances, lesser lights, forgotten authors. Writers who worked alone, steadily, without much recognition. Writers whose suns eclipsed, whose stars faded. We celebrate them too, as members of our community, whether or not we knew them, whether or not they achieved their goals.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 

Nadine Gordimer • Gabriel García Márquez • Walter Dean Myers

Vicente Leñero • Maya Angelou • Kent Haruf • Sue Townsend

Mark Strand • Carolyn Kizer • Galway Kinnell • Radwa Ashour

Siegfried Lenz • Thomas Berger • Maxine Kumin • Daniel Keyes

P.D. James • Eric Hill • Marsha Mehran • Joe McGiniss

Amiri Baraka • Diann Blakely • Saeed Akl • Michael Shanahan

Ana Maria Matute • Richard Eder • Bel Kaufman • Gil Marks

 Mavis Gallant • Paul Robeson Jr. • Claudia Emerson

Jonathan Schell • Mary Stewart • Jack Agüeros

Elizabeth Jane Howard • Justin Kaplan

Martin Gottfried • Susan Spencer-Wendel

Farley Mowat • Ann Marcus • Joel Brinkley

Shon Harris • Peter Matthiessen • Sherwin B. Nuland

IMG_0904Apologies if I’ve inadvertently omitted any writer you feel strongly about; add a comment below, to inform us all.


FYI / Independent Bookstores from Coast to Coast

Wind City Books, Casper, WY

bookbook, New York, NY

Sherman’s Books, Bar Harbor, ME



The tap-dancing typesetter of ETAOIN SHRDLU



0003778800-01-3_20141110Carl Schlesinger died on November 9, 2014. His family described him in his obituary in New Jersey’s Record/Herald as…”a vibrant man who loved the printed word, the New York Times, tap dance, music, writing rhymes, union and printing history, and entertaining audiences.”  

You’ve probably never heard of Carl, but to a considerable number of typophiles and type historians he personified both the love of old printing methods and the intelligent acceptance of the transition to new ones. “Carl was a fascinating link to a different time and technology. And somewhat unusual in that he adapted to computer typesetting,” says Joel Mason, former president of the American Printing History Association.

This was poignantly demonstrated at the New York Times, where Carl worked for a total of thirty-five years: On Saturday night, July 1, 1978,  the NYT published the last newspaper printed via Linotype, a hot-metal typesetting process; the very next day Linotype was definitively over when the newspaper switched to computer-generated cold type.

lino9260 The night was documented in the award-winning twenty-nine-minute film called “Farewell, Etaoin Shrdlu“— meaning farewell to a string of letters that represented the arrangement of keys on the old Linotype machines.

That singular night marked the end of nearly a hundred years of a particular convention in newspaper printing. In a way, Sunday, July 2, 1978 ushered in the digital age. The documentary became a classic, and Carl Schlesinger was the central character in the film.

Other Linotypists understood that their jobs were either disappearing or changing radically; Carl saw the demise of Linotype in a larger context of social change. There’s a nice line in his New York Times obit: “A loud century of men hammering out the news on big metal machines was giving way to the digital whisper of the future.”

Social change was a fact of life to Carl Schlesinger. He wasn’t a man who sat back and complacently punched a keyboard: He took time-outs from the Times for heading a printing program in Kenya and fund-raising for the Flying Doctors Service of East Africa; he turned his lifelong love of tap-dancing into the co-founding of the New York Committee to Celebrate National Tap Dance Day and he co-chaired the Tap Extravaganzas in New York for twenty years.

Carl was a union man and worked hard for the Typographical Union. He wrote two books on printing, one of them about Otto Mergenthaler, inventor of the Linotype. He was a storyteller, polymath, educator. He heard and loved percussion in the crash of Linotype, the click-click of computer keyboards, and the tap-tap-tap of dancing feet.

Laura Minor’s eulogy to her father was quoted in  “He once told me that he was never bored a minute in his life.”



Image 1







Many thanks to Joel Mason for saving Carl’s card and for sharing it with The Book Under Her Bed.



FYI / Independent Bookstores from Coast to Coast

Magers & Quinn Booksellers, Minneapolis, MN

Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks, New York, NY

The Bookworm, Edwards, CO




Today is my mother’s 92nd birthday; our family has a flock of girl-birthdays in October, which is one reason I’m going to Oregon in about forty-eight hours—to be with the other birthday celebrants.

Reading yesterday’s NYT obituary of David Greenglass made my mother’s birthday the most…poignant. Not because she and Greenglass are the same age (which they are), but because she had to endure the witch-hunt politics of the 1940s and 1950s, for which David Greenglass gets some credit.

This isn’t at all logical: With Ruth Greenglass, the Rosenbergs, and now David Greenglass gone, I have the urge to dust off my hands and say, Well, that’s finally over. Not logical. Read all about David Greenglass and the Rosenbergs in the Times obit.

And if you’re too young to know what I’m talking about, read the many comments that accompany the obit. TBUHB is a blog about writing and reading: read the writing—the comments—to get insight into both sides of the story.