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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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Session:         Page of 1029

Cerf:

Well, he liked my feeble jokes. You remember that with love. He liked a pun, too. Later on when I started doing columns, whenever I included some puns, Sherwood would call up and groan, “Bennett, this time you've gone too far.” Then I knew I was in.

Q:

Did any of these people refer others to you? When you were at Liveright, were there any occasions--?

Cerf:

Well, I began meeting them, and Liveright began taking me with him to parties. And Tommy Smith took me down to Greenwich Village, and I met some of the riff raff he circulated with. Later on Noel Coward wrote a play about Tommy Smith and Liveright called “The Scoundrel,” which was the story of Liveright and Tom Smith and these days when we were all young!

Q:

We've never discussed Albert Boni at all.

Cerf:

Boni was gone by the time I got there. They had started the firm and they had started the Modern Library. But shortly before I came there, they had a great argument. And this was Liveright: they tossed a coin for who would buy out the other one. They settled what the price was going to be, and they tossed a coin to see who paid who this rather small price. Liveright won the business and Boni went down and started his own firm with his brother, Charles Boni.



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