Thursday, July 20, 2006
Alfred T. Lehmberg Is Real?
Is Alfred Lehmberg an actual entity? Or is he just a fictional character, a complex put-on?
Once upon a time there was a comic book opinion column written by a Mr. Sidney Mellon. Sidney was an enthusiastic young lad who had a unique style when it came to logic. For example, how can you decide which comic book is the best? Well, Sidney, a big fan of The X-Men, had a simple method. The title that sold the most copies each month had to be the best. Of course, that meant The X-Men had the most artistic merit. QED.
Sidney Mellon was a put-on created by an adult writer (a somewhat jaded writer, of course). I quickly realized that it was a joke, but one of my friends didn’t get it. I had to point out certain passages that indicated that Sidney was too good – I mean, too bad – to be true.
Me, I use a pseudonym and I do joke around, but for the most part I am real. What you see – in this case, read – is what you get. My put-ons are usually obvious – well, at least to me.
But this Alfred Lehmberg… I never heard of him until I started reading Paul Kimball’s blog, The Other Side Of Truth. On occasion Paul would briefly mention Mr. Lehmberg, implying that the man was a bit opinionated at times.
Recently Paul has decided enough is enough and announced that he was dropping the sidebar link on his site to Lehmberg’s homepage. Paul felt the link was acting as an “endorsement” of Lehmberg’s viewpoints.
What galled Paul in particular was Lehmberg referring to Paul as a “dilettante” filmmaker who has “repudiated” his films. I never seen Paul at work or even viewed one of his documentaries. But from what I can tell, this guy works his ass off on his projects. I’m a bit familiar with what goes into a television or film project; unless you have many underlings doing the grunt work, you have to sweat every detail, physically and mentally.
As for the repudiation part, Paul says he is still proud of his films, such as Stanton T. Friedman Is Real, and any statement to the contrary is “misleading hogwash.” (Please, Mr. Kimball, such language!) This is why he has de-linked Lehmberg.
The de-linked Alfred Lehmberg responded with a few comments on Paul’s blog. Let me eXcerpt one of Mr. Lehmberg’s comments as an example of his writing style. He is directly addressing Paul Kimball:
“Naw – you’re transparent down to your penny loafer [sic] … You’re not fooling anybody, hoss. The street’s got your measure… Some folks might be irritated with your insouciant slap and tickle at sensibilities suffering shock and awe, you know?”
This is somewhat typical of Lehmberg’s style. Grumpy great-granddad ranty. A tendency towards run on sentences, words flying from the brain to the fingers, sometimes writing with old-fashioned, somewhat stiff phrasing. Maybe he’s channeling the spirit of a dime novelist or a pulp magazine writer?
Before the dustup, Paul had a post on his blog about a quiz that determined what kind of superhero you were. Lehmberg indicated that such a fun pursuit was beneath him; he sniffed: “...Credulity is, indeed, strained...”
Hey, you got to be careful when straining credulity. Mental hemorrhoids, you know.
Sorry, I’m not falling for it. This “Alfred Lehmberg” has to be a joke. It’s that trickster Sidney Mellon, just older and mean.
CORRECTION: As Paul Kimball explains in his comment on this article, he added a link to Alfred Lehmberg's site for only a couple of weeks as a "light-hearted rejoinder" to Mr. Lehmberg's comments about him. As I've mentioned before, I came late to this controversy and I'm not familiar with all the details. I had assumed that Paul had included the sidebar link for some time now and then decided to drop it. I stand corrected.
Where I stand with Alfred Lehmberg -- well, he's still un-real to me.
Posted by Ray Palm (Ray X) at 2:20 AM