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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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together with an admittedly flimsy plot. It was like putting a lot of pearls on a string. I named this book, as I told you, Don't Go Near the Water, as I had named No Time for Sergeants; and again we had a number one book. This blazed a trail too because it was sold to MGM for a huge sum, and part of the deal was that MGM gave me quite a lot of money for advertising. I believe that that was the first time that that kind of a deal was made.


Was that your idea to see if you could get them to do it?


I don't remember. I wish that I could claim it. I don't remember how it came up, but we did end up by getting, I think, $25,000 to spend on advertising. That paid for a lot of beautiful full-page ads. Furthermore, we had a wonderful cover design, which we used in the ads, of a battleship with a pair of girl's panties flying from the mast. It came right out of the book. The girl reporter couldn't find her panties. The sailors had run it aloft. The admiral had a fit when he saw it.

Well, the funny part of this is that here we had a big book about the Army and another winner about the Navy. So I said, “Now all that we've got to do is find one about the Marines.” After a long search, we uncovered one that I thought was quite funny. But this time it didn't work, proving that you can't go by any rule. This book was almost as funny as the other two. It was called, Danger, Marines

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