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November 25, 2014

Weekend Saturdays and Sundays

Roy Meachum

Weekends, I sit in front of my television set; I have it on right now. Saturdays are dedicated to college football, and the next day I learn from the professionals, thanks to George Preston Marshall.


Once I was invited for lunch on Saturday. Paul “Bear” Bryant posed the attraction; in any event, I was very much appreciated at the table. Mr. Marshall used me as a distraction when Coach Bryant hustles about the Redskins’ head mentor; I figured out quickly why I was invited to that weekend meal. Never said a word, according to George; actually my mind was disloyal. I thought Mr. Bryant would be very good at the local professional club. But I ate George’s food; there was no serious difficulty where my best interest lay.


The Redskins’ owner pulled me into various conversations; he endeared me because he knew who Leon Bakst was. The superb creator of all things choreographic, I spent two years as the administrative head of the Washington Ballet. Mary Day was devoted as the creator; only I left, then it was divided along gossip lines.


Marjorie Meriwether Post, whom I knew from the National Symphony, was impressed with me. Carson Gray Frailey was the president of the music-making organizations; Carson was very familiar with Emmitsburg. Sometimes we took a drive out from Washington – I lived in Chevy Chase – to talk of matters symphonique. He had an interest in the Redskins.


Come to think of it, George Preston Marshall’s friendship existed because he wanted NSO Conductor Howard Mitchell to don an Indians’ contraption, complete with feathers and braids; on that occasion he presented Howard before news photographers. The picture slammed home by Daily News publishing; Mr. Marshall bought several thousands of that News that very day.


Other factors came into sway: an easy streetcar ride took me to Tulane University, the site of the Sugar Bowl. I remember Davey O’Brien from the horned-frogs at Texas Christian University. I always look on kindness at Mark Harmon, the son of Tom Harmon.


Mark stars as National Criminal Investigative Service. The father-and-son’s name came to me because I had first met, not Mark but Tom.


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