To the editors:
I was interested to read the article "Munchkins" in Our Town [March 29].
I'm venturing to disagree with the author's negative projection of the two Munchkins. I took my four-year-old daughter Sasha to the Hollywoodfest, ostensibly so she could meet the Munchkins (she also has seen The Wizard of Oz about a million times) but actually to gratify my own lust for 50s movie trashorama. Still, I did think it would be a piece of history.
Anyway we saw Margaret and Fern. We talked to Fern at length, and she gladly signed an old Oz book I had brought. She was very friendly and sweet, and talked at length to a very taciturn, but definitely interested, Sasha. Although she clearly enjoyed a cigarette, she at no time requested that we buy anything, and throughout the entire visit conformed completely to "Munchkin Behavioral Standards" as laid down by L. Frank Baum.
Shortly thereafter we encountered Margaret. She was equally sociable and after some lively conversation suggested we buy a two-dollar picture which she then autographed "Munchkin Love." Considering the generally commercial tone of these memorabilia conventions, she behaved like a perfect lady, if that doesn't sound patronizing (it probably does), and was neither brusque nor pushy. Rather, they both communicated genuine warmth and humor.
I'm not intending to impress anyone with "Well they liked me." But I would like to communicate my good impression of these two; they passed on to me a little of the Land of Oz. I think Sasha absorbed that too. I can strongly recommend these Hollywoodfests (not to be confused with the Hillside convention); I got a great deal on an Exorcist lobby card, the scene where "Help Me" appears on Regan's stomach.