A good man

Great to hear from you, Cathy, seems an age, how’s Jimmy, what’s new, how’s the weather in Frisco?

Walter, there’s a problem with the checks.

Not getting them? Not on time?

Do you know whose money it is?

Nope, some liberal who doesn't want his name linked to radicals, I assume for fear of McCarthy-type red-baiting, what’s the problem?

Ramparts magazine, you know Ramparts?

Oh yes.

Has received a copy of a memo supposedly from the CIA authorizing those checks as payment to Jimmy and me for being government agents.

Would you repeat that, Cathy?

Walter, the checks are being used as supposed proof Jimmy and I are agents of some kind, paid by the CIA.

Are you kidding?

Do I sound like I’m kidding?

No. Not at all.

Walter, who got you involved in this money thing?

Who spoke to me about it?


Howart Bruer, old friend from the War, an editor at Life. I’ve known him 25, 30 years.

And you trust him?

I’ve no reason not to.

Could he have been duped into this? Used?

Not the Howart I know. Good man, good editor, one of the counterintelligence boys in the China crew.


Now don’t get the wrong idea, Cathy, that was the war, heck, they had Communist Party members in counter-intelligence.

Did you get the impression he knows who the money’s from?

An old friend.

Would you feel easy about calling him and asking?

I can do that, sure, what does Jimmy think of all this, he knew Howart from when he was a kid.

Jimmy’s out of town, I was hoping to clear this up before he gets home.

I can call Howart now. You really believe the memo was forged.

Of course it was forged, Walter, what do you think?

I mean it seems so strange, why would they do that to kids like you?

They do all kinds of things to kids like us.

Yes, well, the assault charge, hitting a cop, unjustified as that might be, they didn’t make that up.

Walter, I’d really appreciate it if you’d give Mr. Bruer at Life a call and straighten this out.

I’m sure he’ll have some explanation.

That’s what I need, Walter, very much.

Give you a call then tonight or tomorrow.

Great. Thanks so much, Walter.

Give my love to Jimmy when he gets home.

I will.