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Hugh Hefner, Teen Cartoonist
March 11, 2010 2:48 PM   Subscribe

When Jane Sellers moved to California in 1943 her sixteen year-old school pal, Hugh Hefner, began writing to her. Their friendship and correspondence endured for sixty years.
posted by gman (22 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

 
Two things I noticed at the bottom:

1) From the comments - "Here's a video about Hef's early years including rare footage of his cartoons and a horror movie he filmed as a kid:

http://www.playboy.com/articles/hugh-hefners-playboy-video-the-early-years/
"

but for some reason it won't play for me?

2) A pdf of the full catalog of Jane Sellers' Hefner archive is available for the asking:

Lux Mentis, Booksellers
Antiquarian & Fine First Editions - Specializing in Library/Collection Development
110 Marginal Way, #777
Portland, ME, 04101
207-329-1469
http://www.luxmentis.com
posted by gman at 2:51 PM on March 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


I love how he asks what her turn-ons are in the very first letter.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:16 PM on March 11, 2010


"At 16, I knew he was destined to do amazing things, so I saved every scrap of paper he ever sent or gave me," Jane Sellers later said.

I have a person like this in my life, whose scraps I save. He sure as shit better not turn out to be the next Hugh Hefner.
posted by sallybrown at 3:32 PM on March 11, 2010 [6 favorites]


Before he became the creepy grandpa with three granddaughters girlfriends on TV, Hefner was a really interesting guy.


I use "interesting" here in a way that is unfortunately, though intentionally, pretty bland and non-judgmental. I think no matter how you feel about the man and the many different shades of the same 'colorful' persona he's had in the last six decades, nobody can argue with 'interesting' as a modifier.

posted by MCMikeNamara at 3:49 PM on March 11, 2010


As far as the "creepy grandpa"... if I had to choose one single person with which I could exchange lives, there's no question that it would be that creepy grandpa - and I'll tell you what, any red-blooded male who loves women who would tell you otherwise, is lying. You can take that to the bank. And thanks for the post, gman, I'm thrilled to hear about this woman.
posted by dbiedny at 3:56 PM on March 11, 2010


This should be fun.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:58 PM on March 11, 2010


with whom... for chrissakes, I was lost in a thought about a party at the mansion... sigh.

And to think I might have ended up doing business with Hef... damn. Add another entry to the regrets column of my life... sigh.
posted by dbiedny at 3:58 PM on March 11, 2010


Aside from being surprised that he was a nice, talented youth, the fact that he kept it up for 60 years makes me wonder if he's really just a sweet old man.

What this article doesn't mention is that Jane Sellers went to California to make porn.

(Yea, I just made that up.)
posted by snsranch at 4:07 PM on March 11, 2010


As far as the "creepy grandpa"... if I had to choose one single person with which I could exchange lives, there's no question that it would be that creepy grandpa - and I'll tell you what, any red-blooded male who loves women who would tell you otherwise, is lying.

I'd rather be Bob Guccione. Or, better yet, Lasse Braun.
posted by stinkycheese at 5:21 PM on March 11, 2010


I'd rather be a guy who managed to maintain a long-term, mature relationship with an adult woman who wasn't my employee.
posted by mpbx at 5:31 PM on March 11, 2010 [5 favorites]


boooring.
posted by gman at 5:37 PM on March 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


get right the hell out of this thread. boooooo.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 5:43 PM on March 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


if I had to choose one single person with which I could exchange lives, there's no question that it would be that creepy grandpa - and I'll tell you what, any red-blooded male who loves women who would tell you otherwise, is lying.

If I were Hugh Hefner, I would have to consider your age and physical health before taking you up on this offer.

Once I'd determined that you were a youthful man in decent health with no obvious health problems, I would agree to switch bodies with you.

Once our bodies were switched, I'd reveal to you that I'd willed your body all of my money and then laugh maniacally as the realization that you were trapped in the body of a penniless octogenarian passed over your eyes.

Then I would take all of my money and my new healthy body and have sex with attractive women.

If I were Hugh Hefner.
posted by Joey Michaels at 5:53 PM on March 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


If you've ever seen an episode of The Girls Next Door, you'd know how sad and pitiful Hef looks. He wanders around the mansion in pajamas with his three blonde companions (who he almost certainly is not having sex with) in tow. He's almost always leafing through some ancient issue of the magazine or photos from 40 years ago, trying to explain the past and the history of himself and his magazine to the girls who nod and smile like they're trapped in an awkward moment with a senile grandfather who has mistaken them for his own grandchildren. Or he's making them watch old movies from the 50s or 60s that they have absolutely no interest in.

The only person he seems to have a real connection with his personal secretary, Mary O'Connor, who is about his age. It seems like she keeps the whole operation running.

Hefner is still living the Playboy lifestyle, but that's all he has. A lifestyle. What he doesn't have is a life. I think there are probably moments where he realizes it. He's supposedly a film buff; I wonder if he watches Citizen Kane and thinks about Kane in Xanadu and sees himself. Or maybe he's just a shallow guy. Maybe he's just running Russ Meyer flicks in his home theater.

It's a really ghastly, ghoulish subtext to what is supposed to be a fluffy, superficial show on E!
posted by mpbx at 6:49 PM on March 11, 2010 [3 favorites]


Never heard of it. Sounds made up.
posted by gman at 7:02 PM on March 11, 2010


Yeah, I'd always been of the opinion that Hefner was an immature sleaze, but a harmless one that at least seemed to have a lot of fun and love what he does. And he probably was as a younger man, but ever since that E! show started airing I just feel sorry for him, for the reasons stated here: he's a guy in his 80s that has to pay attractive girls to hang out with him just to keep up his image.
posted by DecemberBoy at 7:50 PM on March 11, 2010


"He glanced at the top of the letter before I slugged him and ..."

That's the thing I miss most about the fifties, slugging guys. I don't know why, but you just don't see guys slugging one another anymore. Sigh...the good old days.
posted by digsrus at 8:24 PM on March 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Hefner is still living the Playboy lifestyle, but that's all he has. A lifestyle. What he doesn't have is a life. I think there are probably moments where he realizes it. He's supposedly a film buff; I wonder if he watches Citizen Kane and thinks about Kane in Xanadu and sees himself. Or maybe he's just a shallow guy. Maybe he's just running Russ Meyer flicks in his home theater.

Assuming all this is true (and I've no reason to doubt it), how many people of Hefner's age have any kind of interesting/exciting life at all? Most people in their 80's are sitting around in old folks homes, being spoon-fed pap by people on minimum wage.

So Hefner gets to hang out in his mansion being spoon-fed pap by a pair of overpaid bunnies who wander around with their titties out and cuddle up to him at night. How is that still not a total win from Hefner's point of view.

At my current age, Hefner's lifestyle has no appeal whatsoever. But if I had the opportunity spend my dotage being nursed by a pair of matching pneumatic bimbos in their 20's who'll deliver blow jobs on command, I'm pretty sure that you wouldn't have to ask me twice.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:05 PM on March 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Most people in their 80's are sitting around in old folks homes, being spoon-fed pap by people on minimum wage.

Citation needed.

Anyway, I know Ian slightly and I'm excited to see this very cool collection getting so much attention. Since this is Follow Friday, I'll put in a plug for his Twitter account, which is always chock-full of great links.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 4:48 AM on March 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Citation needed.

Exhibit a.
Exhibit b.

I know where *I'd* prefer to be when I'm in *my* 80's.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:49 AM on March 12, 2010


What he doesn't have is a life.

As opposed to the throngs of people working 8-6 for insurance companies, or selling crap by cold-calling people, or working at Burger King.

Or posting their high-valued opinions on the internet.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:55 AM on March 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


As opposed to the throngs of people working 8-6 for insurance companies, or selling crap by cold-calling people, or working at Burger King.

What? I'm talking about meaningful human relationships. The guy is locked up in Xanadu with a bunch of hangers-on.
posted by mpbx at 3:27 PM on March 12, 2010


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