EXCLUSIVE: First Cecil Adams Revealed

We didn’t mean to uncover the first Cecil Adams and how The Straight Dope started when we set out to film a documentary about the early days of photography at the Chicago Reader. Watch thisfeaturette to see who was the first Cecil and how the column its start in 1973.

More information about the exhibit available on the Gage Gallery website.


Mike Lenehan was eaten by Cecil with a side of fava beans. Everyone knows that.

Poor guy. Obviously a failing memory leading to confusion between his contributions and Cecil’s.

Is Little Ed in the documentary? (No, I’m not going to watch the whole thing to find out.)

Is that … really … movable type in the background?

Whoever put this fraud together doesn’t even read The Master’s columns, or they’d have known that 1973 wasn’t in the 19[sup]th[/sup] century.

Sacrilege. May PeeWee Herman become your permanent houseguest.

It has been long known that in 1973 Mr. Lenehan bravely volunteered to become Cecil Adams’ first editor, a post he held for about three years, followed by a two-year stint by Dave Kehr, then, beginning in 1978, the current incumbent, Ed “Little Ed” Zotti.

It has also been well known that the stress of having to deal with Unca Cece on a regular basis eventually left Mr. Lenehan sterile and hallucinating.

There is a famous episode of Gilligan’s Island where Mary Ann, following a trauma, comes to believe she is Ginger. Likewise, Mr. Lenehan’s interactions apparently left him with the belief that he was in fact Cecil Adams. The sad analogy is obvious.

Well, I’m a “yes” to the first at least…

Comparing Mr. Lenehan with Mr. Zotti, it appears hairlessness is also a side-effect.
Powers &8^]

In other words, the hallucinations seem very real.

Reality is for people how can’t handle drugs … any chance we can get this thread moved over to a more appropriate board, specifically The Pit? This is clearly shameless advertising and pure slander, we need to burn it and see what remains.

I think it’s time we just face the truth:

Uncle Cece, because of his great knowledge, has become a completely spiritual entity. In order to communicate with us in this world, his spirit inhabits a body of another living mortal who then channels Cecil message to us.

Happens all of the time.

It should be noted that video of Mike Lenehan is heavily edited. He could be saying anything.

Uh-huh. Isn’t that Cecil’s excuse when Little Ed mangles the transcription? :smiley:

(Damn golden plates should be easier to read.)

I, for one, welcome any information that fights the ignorance-- in existence since 1973-- that Cecil Adams is actually real.

Of course Cecil Adams is “real”. Just read this article by him. If you’re an intelligent human being and paying attention to all the clues, that article makes it obvious what the form of his reality is. But he is definitely real.

Someone had to bring Adolph Hilter in to this, now didn’t they?

So that’s how all those perverts in Baltimore got onto the Dope! I always wondered about that. :slight_smile: