Friday, June 10, 2011

Mad Libs Creator Dies

Some sad news was reported in the Times today. Leonard B. Stern, a successful television writer and co-creator of the ___________________[adverb] successful children's word game called Mad Libs, died on Tuesday at the age of 88. Since the late 1950s, when Mad Libs first appeared, something like ___________________[number] million copies of the Mad Libs tablets have been sold. A seemingly endless source of amusement for children on ____________________[mode of transportation] trips or during any long period of _____________________[noun or gerund], these games also taught children __________________[noun] in a manner that was __________________[adjective] and _______________________[another adjective].

The story goes that the idea for the game dawned on Mr. Stern while writing a script for _____________________________________[name of TV show] when he needed just the right descriptive word. He turned to a colleague and requested an adjective. His colleague, the humorist Roger Price, gave him two: "clumsy" and "naked." When Mr. Stern ___________________________[adverb] laughed, the two men realized they had hit on a potentially ______________________[adjective] idea. Unable to find a publisher willing to take a risk on this venture, they published the books themselves. The rest is _______________________[noun].

Actually, Stern was an incredibly successful and _______________________[adjective] writer for television, but _______________________[adverb], Mad Libs would become his most acclaimed creation. It helped, though, to be a known commodity and to write ______________[adverb] for ______________________[noun]. Steve Allen, the noted variety show host, introduced the game on his television program in 1958 and sales _____________________[past tense verb].

Mad Libs continues to sell and the names of Leonard Stern and Roger Price _______________[verb] on. Rest in ____________________[noun] Mr. Stern.

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