From Flymo to Smarty to Lobster Savannah
Arthur Rosenblatt’s effort to build an American market for the Flymo, a British-made lawnmower that hovered rather than rolled over grass, was not successful. It did, however, land him a guest spot on the popular TV game show, “What’s My Line?” The panel rather improbably guessed that he was the ad man behind the Flymo.
But, after 20 years in the corporate world, Mr. Rosenblatt was ready to make a change, using his facility with words to write books rather than ad copy, specifically children’s books. A friend who edited children’s literature at Little Brown told him to submit an outline and 30 pages. The editor liked the story, but wanted a re-write. After five re-writes, Smarty, about a clever, but socially-awkward 7th grader who runs for president against the most popular boy in the class, was published and Arthur Rosenblatt, children’s book author, was launched. More than half a dozen books followed with characters as varied as a crime-fighting rodent called Danger Mouse and a not very successful football team, the Huddlers, as well as books for the Care Bears, Strawberry Shortcake and Cabbage Patch franchises.
A lover of theater, he wrote study guides for King Lear and Richard III. His one-act play, “Please Hang Up,” continues to be produced. He said he recently received a royalty check for $8.32.
Mr. Rosenblatt also loves good food. He particularly remembers Lobster Savannah at the venerable and much missed Locke-Ober in Boston, which he enjoyed many years ago, as the best meal he’s ever had. An avid home cook, it was only natural that he would become a food writer. Yet another editor friend paved the way and he was soon writing for Food & Wine and doing features and restaurant reviews for the Albany Times Herald, the Hartford Advocate and other publications, and branching out to radio, doing a weekly half-hour, “Cooking With Arthur” at the station at UConn Torrington’s branch and “The Gadabout Gourmet” on NPR-affiliated WHDD.
A Norfolk resident until moving to Noble two and a half years ago, Mr. Rosenblatt served his town as First Selectman. The restoration of the town center was a primary focus, which anyone who has driven through town or attended a performance at Infinity Hall would count as a major success. He also greatly enjoyed being a narrator at concerts at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival.
By any measure, Arthur Rosenblatt is a Renaissance Man, and just one of the fascinating people who call Noble Horizons home.