Harry Oliver – Desert Magazine (October 2014)

“I never did learn how to spell-but I did learn the typesetter’s rule ‘Set up the type as long as you can hold your breath without turning blue in the face, then put a comma. When you gape (sic), put in a semicolon and when you want to sneeze, that’s the time to make a paragraph.'”

And with a firm understanding of such, Harry Oliver set out to make the “Desert Rat Scrap Book.” It was an unusual news paper. Whenever he had collected enough stories, procured some poems and had a good cartoon from a friend, including Walt Disney, he would issue the diminutive little couch of amusement. All in all, he made some 44 such publications (and several more books). The masthead of the Desert Rat Scrap Book” heralded it to be the “smallest newspaper in the world..published at Fort Oliver..four times a year.” Oliver prefaced that with the admonition that,”This paper is not entered as 2nd class mail. It’s a first class newspaper.” And indeed its subscribers were all over the world. He also cheerfully added that the offer of subscription “expires when I do.”

Oliver had a very successful career before he became a newspaperman and desert humorist.
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