Different Slants

Seeing the World from a New Angle

Fear and Drawing on the South Side of Chicago…by Robert M. Katzman

Robert M. Katzman’s Amazing Story: www.differentslants.com/?p=355
© April 30, 2013 (my birthday)
Sunday morning reflection, age 63, while filled with cold medication:
My mother, then Anne Warman (1921-2001), went to Hyde Park High School, class of  ’39 when it was a decidedly Jewish place whatever the %. When I began in Lab School after fleeing the South Side in the middle of the night, where I lived with her from 1950 to 1964, I eventually joined the Midway school newspaper in 1966.
One of my responsibilities, after teacher Wayne Brasler discovered I could draw, was to make editorial cartoons. I had no particular title. I did whatever I was told to do and went where he sent me.
One time in 1967, he began a series on high schools in the area and sent me around by bus to draw the front of the schools. This may still exists in the Lab School’s library archive, if they have one.One school was Hyde Park High, very close to Lab School but not the same student population almost thirty years after my mother left there. It was pretty much 100% a black student body at that point and Brasler sending me to draw that school’s facade while sitting on an elevated hill in the park facing it was a remarkably terrifying prospect for me. But I did it.
I went there early in the morning before the first bell rang for classes to begin. I drew in pen and ink as quickly as I could. It didn’t take long for the hundreds of kids milling around the school to notice me sitting there doing whatever I was doing from their perspective below me, looking up at the skinny white boy madly sketching.
I was pointed out by someone and soon people were watching me, watching them. I was uncertain what to do and kept drawing with little alternative.Then, suddenly, a car with what seemed to be a dozen kids in it drove up on the hill from the street directly toward where I was sitting. They were laughing, yelling and waving.
I jumped up and took off, running really fast the several blocks north to my school, terrified. I kept a death grip on my damn sketchbook and the drawing was soon published. It was drawn fast, but it was good.

I know now that those kids were playing with me, just having fun with the clueless white kid in an alien environment, pretending they were going to do something horrible to me.

I know that now 46 years later. I wish I knew it then.

Publishing News! 

Bob Katzman’s two new true Chicago books are now for sale, from him!
Vol. One: A Savage Heart  and Vol. Two: Fighting Words

Gritty, violent, friendship, classic American entrepreneurship love, death, heartbreak and the real dirt about surviving in a completely corrupt major city under the Chicago Machine. More history and about one man’s life than a person may imagine.

Please visit my new website: https://www.dontgoquietlypress.com
If a person doesn’t want to use PayPaI, I also have a PO Box & I ship anywhere in America.

Send me a money order with your return and contact info.
I will get your books to you within ten days.
Here’s complete information on how to buy my books:

Vol 1: A Savage Heart and Vol. 2: Fighting Words
My books weigh almost 2 pounds each, with about 525 pages each and there are a total together of 79 stories and story/poems.

Robert M. Katzman
Don’t Go Quietly Press
PO Box 44287
Racine, Wis. 53404-9998                                                                                                                    (262)752-3333, 8AM–7PM

Books cost $29.95 each, plus shipping

For: (1)$3.95; (2)$5.95; (3)$7.95; (4)$8.95 (5)$9.95;(6) $10.95

(7) $11.95; (8) $12.95; (9)$13.95 (10)$15.95 (15)$19.95

I am also for hire if anyone wants me to read my work and answer questions in the Chicago/Milwaukee area. Schools should call me for quantity discounts for 30 or more books. Also: businesses, bookstores, private organizations or churches and so on.

My Fighting Words Publishing Co. four original books, published between 2004 and 2007 are now out-of-print. I still have some left and will periodically offer them for sale on my new website.

 Twitter handle: bob_katzman

1 Comment »

Comment by J Steve Adler

April 28, 2013 @ 11:52 am

Something must have triggered that memory. There are moments from our past which really stand out. It would be interesting to see your drawings and read about the “history” of each one in your own memorable way of recall and notation.

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