Tarzana, California

March 13, 2012

With “John Carter” in theatres right now (getting mediocre reviews, despite Michael Chabon being partly responsible for the script), you might be interested in this fact about the story’s creator, Edgar Rice Burroughs: the man didn’t just create the Mars epos, he’s also the inventor of Tarzan. So it’s only logical that with the wealth he amassed from his books, he built a farm and named it Tarzana. Said Tarzana is now a city in California (and judging by Google Maps’ satellite photography, people in Tarzana are quite partial to pools):

For more on Burroughs, Salon released a good piece on him today:

For occasional entertainment Burroughs read the early pulp magazines, especially All-Story. Named after the cheap newsprint upon which they were printed, the pulps supplied adventure and romantic fiction to the masses for half a century. By the 1920s and ’30s newsstands around the country would display the lurid and spicy covers of Weird Tales, the Shadow, Amazing Stories, True Confessions, Dime Detective, Astounding, and Black Mask. Pulp writers would include such important literary figures as H. P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Robert A. Heinlein and scores of others. But in 1911 most of the writers weren’t of this caliber, and Burroughs was convinced he could write better adventure stories and maybe even make a living at it.

In fact he rather underestimated himself.