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Van break-in drives home a point about marriage

SHARE Van break-in drives home a point about marriage

It's all about what happened to one of my friends.

I'll call him Nick.

One morning not long ago, Nick went out to his van and - lo and behold - someone had broken in and stolen several items. Nick was miffed, of course. But not half as miffed as Mrs. Nick. She lost her day planner in the raid and - being a realtor - her day planner was more precious to her than rubies.

So Nick sat down to think.

"Listen," he said. "Thieves have no use for day planners. They probably rifled through the thing looking for money and credit cards then chucked it the first chance they got. I bet if we check that big Dumpster down by the church we'll find it."

They made a trip to the Dump-ster.

And there it was.

Needless to say, when Nick told me this story I was mighty im-pressed.

"Nice work," I said. "I bet your wife has made you her hero for life."

"Nah," Nick smiled. "In fact, she's still upset. She's upset because she wonders how she ever married a man who has such a crim-i-nal mind."

That - my newlywed amigos - is marriage.

- ONCE UPON A MATTRESS: In Will South's new book - "Andy Warhol Slept Here" (Signature, $12.95.) - he writes about the international celebrities who've spent a night in Utah.

It's an impressive list.

There are the usual suspects: Mark Twain, Horace Greeley, Susan B. Anthony, Jack Kerouac.

There are also some surprises. Groucho Marx and Charlie Chaplin spent time here together during their vaudeville days (they visited a "sporting house"). And Orson Welles dropped through to star in his own production of "Macbeth."

South also revisits the famous Andy Warhol hoax, where Warhol sent a double to represent him. And he hedges a bit, making readers think that Vincent van Gogh actually came to town when we were only visited by his paintings.

My own favorite "celebrity sleepover" didn't make the book, however. It was the night James Dickey, the Pulitzer poet and author of the novel "Deliverance," came to town. Brewster Ghiselin was running the budget for the University of Utah English Department at the time. And he was notorious for saving a buck for the school where he could.

He put Dickey up in a downtown motel that didn't have air conditioning. And it was a room right next to the boiler.

The room was cheap.

And it was also a blazing inferno.

The next morning, members of the U. English department found Dickey asleep on the lawn of the motel, wrapped in a white bed sheet.

Amazingly, the cantankerous old Southerner didn't even complain.