I found this page floating around. I think I must have pulled it from a file to share a copy with someone about my time in Japan. Now I don’t remember if the “2” at the bottom of the page is really an indication of this being the second page of a letter from my father, but maybe someday I’ll find the rest of the letter, if there is more. The paper itself is European-size, not US letter size. So he probably just yanked page 2 of a handout I had sent him, and filled in the blank space with his own commentary.
In any case, it’s a good example of the correspondence we carried on for many years. By this time (late 1980s) he must have been living with my sister Terry, and before I gave him my old typewriter (which had a different font). As you can see, his notes are full of sarcasm and humor. Tidbits of this and that, with a couple of clippings pasted on the sheet. All of this seems to run in the family; his mother was a clip artist, too. As am I; though in recent years that activity has become digitized.
To answer his question (Who is Val?): VAL was my valuation trademark, back in the day. I invented a measure of stock valuation and named it VAL because catchy; I think it stood for Valuation Attractiveness Level or something like that — after all these years, I’d have to look at some of my old work to see if I’m remembering correctly.
Dad was a huge jazz fan — many stories go with that (going with Barbara to the Blue Note in the Village and having him connect with the cat who was playing there; his record collection that I gave to the Trinity College library; and so on). Jimmy Guiffre was a good friend of his; they used to play together at the Stockbridge Inn, long before it became Michael’s Restaurant. Dad was a talented keyboard player (and composer), but with Jimmy he mostly played the sax and clarinet.