Sgt Roman F. Klick 36620923
HS 1393 Engr APO 709
c/o PM SF Cal
7 August 1944
I began writing to you at noon and should have continued doing so instead of stopping before I got by the first sentence. I wasn't much in the mood for writing and I had the latest July 31st edition of Time magazine to read. You think that July 31st is rather recent? Well, it is and that is about the fastest time we have ever received a magazine of any kind. The reason for that is that there is what is called the Hawaiian edition, printed in Hawaii and airmailed into the Pacific. Three men in the office get that magazine every week, Norona, Cook and Captain Ladley. Norona allows me to read his copy immediately and I give it to him after I am done with it.
Anyhow, at three-thirty we knocked off work to get ready for some practice to see if our gas masks are still in good shape and right after that was over, the gang of us headed down to the Seabees to get a seat at the Bob Hope-Frances Langford show. You know Americans --- the type that line up at the box office hours and even days ahead of time so that they will get a good seat. Well, when we arrived for the seven o'clock show at four-thirty the place was half filled up. However, there were plenty of good seats available yet and, sure enough, we managed to get the very seats we sit in whenever we do go to the Seabees in the evening to see a show.
We went without lunch but brought along, peanuts and candy bars to keep ourselves going --- also magazines and newspapers to keep the time going along at a good clip when the conversation died down. The Chaplain drove us down but changed his mind about staying and went back to camp. When we saw him next some three hours later there were no more seats left in the house and I believe that he and several other officers from our battalion had to stand down there next to the stage in order to see the performance.
They did keep us waiting for about ten minutes after seven before they showed up and, unfortunately, I do not think they were worth the wait. However, I can say that they were here in my various letters to people back home and it will still fill up space. Frankly speaking, Bob Hopes jokes were strictly on the corny side this evening and most of them were old ones which we had heard before. Yet, there was something about seeing those screen personalities that was okay. Bob Hope appeared exactly the way he does in all his movies and no different. He is full of gags about Dorothy Lamour, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra and Eleanor Roosevelt. For instance, he said that on some of these islands in the Central Pacific that they have been visiting, these girls (Frances Langford and the dancer Patty Thomas) were the first women to set foot on the place and how that burns Eleanor up.
Frances Langford sang several songs very well. She wore something I can best describe as being a pink slip with a skirt made of black tassels giving the effect of a cloth (grass) skirt which would swirl around and make the pink slip underneath visible. The upper piece was made of the same material. At the end of the show she and the other girl came out in olive drab slacks. During the show the dancer made the biggest hit since she was dressed in tight fitting and abbreviated tights --- solid black with an orange trim around the top. She didn't have to dance or sing to go over for she was greeted loud and long just by stepping out onto the stage in that outfit.
Jerry Colonna was not spectacular either but did a couple of those eardrum piercing screeches of his which go along with several songs in his repertoire, The Concert Stars still rank tops as having been the most popular artists, the most well received guests and the most pleased group we have ever had out here in spite of the three big names on today's bill.
One thing which always goes over with the boys and that is reference to things which are colloquial to their island. For instance, Bob Hope found out that the expression "raisin jack" is peculiar to Guadalcanal and he managed to refer to it in the show. Raisin Jack is a local brew made mostly of raisins just as New Caledonia was famous for its Butterfly Rum --- another of those overseas knock out drops in the way of pixilating beverages.
The troupe had for music only the instrumental accompaniment of a guitar played by a fellow called Tony Romano.
The other fellows stayed for the show but since it was a wild western thriller called the "Frontier Law" I did not remain but came back to camp where. after taking a refreshing shower, I opened up a can of sardines and made myself a sardine sandwich which filled the void in my stomach.
It is well past eleven o'clock right now and there will be no other letter writing this evening although I had intended trying to draft up a letter to Pat and then writing it for keeps tomorrow evening.
Two letters arrived from the outside world in this morning's mail. One was from you dated the 29th and the other one was from Larry Isaacson who enclosed several shells which I had inquired about. They were to fit into the bottom of the necklace which I hope to make for Pat but Larry didn't send me the right type so I'll just have to throw them away and make necklace without them or try to find something else. The thing which keeps me from making the string of shells is the lack of material to hold the chain in the shells. I'm afraid wax won't do the trick although that seems to be all that is available at the present time.
I'm glad to hear that the ration stamp which you gave up to buy those moccasins did not cause you an inconvenience. Speaking of shoes, I know for sure that I'm going to every bit of twenty pair of just as Leo Durocher has and probably more since every day I see shoe advertisements in the papers with every one different and I intend to have them all. Of course, I'm going to have to have the extra money to do all of this with so I hope one of my ideas clik so that enough money will roll in so that these "hobbies" may be allowed.
Say, Aunty Clara, I'm on my last box of Listerine toothpowder or whatever brand that is. I forget right at this moment but if you can get some more I would appreciate it if you would send it along. I hate to think of changing to another brand after being so used to that kind although I wish they would get around to selling it in the PX. Goodness knows they sell a lot of other brands of tooth powder.
The working day was spent in typing up OPVs with the exception of the time spent on the Morning Reports and other assorted work. Those assorted jobs are what prevented me from completing the OPVs during the day. However, I'm just about finished and tomorrow noon should see me ready to have them signed. I'm going to go around personally tomorrow and see to it that as many of them are signed as possible.
I'm getting groggy typing this letter at this late hour --- it seems that now I consider eleven o'clock and beyond as past my bed time and I automatically get sleepy. So I shall close right here and now and make no attempt to finish the page.