An astounding article on Sirfessor Malfew Seklew from the Chicago Daily Tribune of February 28 1916.
The man identified here as Doc Rawleigh of the Toltec tribe may be Redwood Bailey, Cherokee. Bailey wrote about the Sirfessor in The Day Book for February 5 1916, and the Sirfessor replied in the same periodical five days later. W. Kibbler comments on the both two days after that, and all of these letters are collected in The Gospel of Malfew Seklew.
Franklin Rosemont lists Bertram Lester Weber as an active and early member of the Dil Pickle Club in The Rise & Fall of the Dil Pickle Club. The Pickle was the publisher of the Sirfessor’s work as well as the 1927 edition of Might is Right by Ragnar Redbeard. Weber wrote plays performed at the Pickle, plays lost to time. “No speaker could withstand […] the biting wit of Bertie Weber” said Ben Reitman. Edna Dexter described Weber as “clever and humorous. He would go about Bughouse Park and the Pickle and peddle [his poems] for ten cents a piece.” Rosemont’s recommended book reprints a two-page poem by Weber. The Big Red Songbook by Utah Phillips writes Weber was born in Chicago in 1885 and died in Wisconsin in June 1962. – Trevor Blake
Unhatched Egos Bathe Their Souls in Super Sunlight
Mildewed Minded Mortals List to Sirfessor Superman Rage
HE GETS AWAY WITH IT
Whatever gentle, lamb-like traits a Superman may display when among his fellows, he certainly gets real rough when talking to mere mortals who, unlike him, have failed to ascend to the Summit of Ego.
At least that was the conclusion to be drawn from attendance at a meeting held in a hall at 20 West Randolph street last night where “Sirfessor” F. M. Wilkesbarre, who modestly admits he is the only Superman running at large in the United States at the present time, engaged in a debate on “Is Exploitation the First Law of Nature?” with Lester Weber, who describes himself as “a rationalist lecturer.”
Call ‘Em Supernames.
In taking the affirmative side and trying to convince his audience of 300 persons that his Superintelligence was the greatest thing ever brought to Chicago, the “sirfessor” – a term to be carefully set apart from that of common, ordinary “professor” – shook his Superlocks as he Superraged majestically about the platform and called his hearers the following Supernames:
Benighted and bedamned bipeds.
Gets Away with It.
And not only that, but the “sirfessor” got away with it without having a single chair bounced off his Supercranium. As for “Rationalist” Weber, he didn’t stand a chance and was glad to quit the argument in half the time allotted to him.
With his tawny bangs drooping artistically over one eye so that he could look at the audience only with the other optic, Weber opened the debate.
“You have gathered here tonight to witness a battle royal between two of the greatest intellects the world ever saw,” he began in the voice of a well drilled chorus man. “You may bathe your souls in the sunlight of our brilliant personalities.”
“Haw!” Laughs Doc Rawleigh.
“Haw!” laughed a long-haired individual who claims to be “Dr. Raleigh, medicine man of the Toltec tribe.”
For a time it looked like a riot, but Weber managed to hold the platform for a few moments, asserting that exploitation couldn’t be the first law of nature because nature didn’t have any first law, and that the “sirfessor” was real mean in making him debate on such a subject when what he really wanted to argue about was, “Resolved, That the Self-COnscious Ego is a Cheap Organism.”
Then Arose the “Sirfessor”
Then he sat down and the “sirfessor” arose.
“You angry and antagonistic atoms!” he thundered at his hearers. “You cheap organisms and banal babblers – all that you know is how to get and beget. Poor, miserable devils of workers, you have no conception of the Supreme Ego. I stand before you, superior to any human being I’ve ever met, ready to push Infinity in the face and tell it to get out of my way, while you – you miserable misfits – sit there ready to kiss the hand that crushes you and kick the hand that benefits you… “
You Gotta Hand It to Him.
Even the long haired medicine man was willing to admit that the “sirfessor” took the cake after the debate was closed.
The “sirfessor,” who is president of “the Society of Superites of England,” is in America to organize “the Society of Social Aristocrats,” to be composed of supermen and superladies. He says he can turn any “mental aristocrat” into a superbeing in four lessons.
When not engaged in this he sells super cigarette holders and superite netcktie grippers.