Cain refers to author John O'Hara (1905-70) as well as to Judge John Sirica, remembered as the Watergate judge who ordered President Nixon to turn in his White House tapes over to the Senate committee. Cain writes, "In re THE CHRISTMAS SPEERT[sic], the piece I suspect of being O'Hara's first in New York: I reprinted it on the Christmas Page, December 25, of the New York World, 1929, as I pin down by the following recollection: I was in touch with the big money at the time, so I could have produced a play, and on the basis of this piece sent for O'Hara to try and persuade him to write it....I invited him down to the apartment...in October 1929, on East Nineteenth Street...my wife Elina wasn't there...." He explains why the meeting had to take place only in 1929 and continues. "O'Hara seemed surprised at my admiration for the piece, indifferent to my idea, and utterly indifferent to me. He was not the easiest person to like, being quite cold in his manner, even at age 24...I do not think I was alone in that reaction to him. He wasn't noted for his charm. But on paper I was, and still am, his potato...." One holograph correction in this last paragraph. Signed, "Jim." He continues in a postscript mentioning Judge Sirica. "Now to mooch something off you, since I take it you're partly Italian: This judge we have here, who has his name pronounced SirIca -- Shouldn't that be SIRica?...on the basis of operatic Italian, which I'm fairly loaded with." Cain replies to Prof. Bruccoli, Professor of English, Univ. of South Carolina who sent a copy of a typed letter from O'Hara to Cain, undated. In the letter, O'Hara asks Cain for money. Bruccoli writes to Cain in full at the bottom of the copy of O'Hara's letter. "Dear Mr. Cain - This [O'Hara's letter] may jiggle your flow of recollection."
John O'hara is perhaps best remembered for his novels, "Butterfield, 8" (1935) and "Pal Joey," (1940). Fine in literary association.