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Wolf gets payback

Chicago Coin Club roasts its secretary

They?ve roasted the likes of Jack Benny, Milton Berle and Don Rickles?all celebrities to be sure?but now the witty, biting but well-meaning sarcasm has been turned on a numismatic celebrity: Carl Wolf, a driving force behind the Chicago Coin Club.


CCC President Bob Feiler, left, with
roastee Carl Wolf. Wolf received the
CCC?s Lifetime Achievement Award.

A surprised Wolf, the CCC?s current secretary and a past president, was the guest of honor for the ??Unofficial? Chicago Coin Club Merciless Roast of Carl Wolf: This is Payback Chicago Style?,? held Saturday, June 23, at Giannotti?s Italian Restaurant in Schiller Park, Ill.

Following dinner, Wolf was greeted with opening remarks by CCC President Bob Feiler and poison-dipped jibes from fellow, unnamed CCC club members, read by Roast Master Jeff Rosinia. Among the verbal taunts were:

?Without Carl this club would not be the same, but sometimes change is good.?

?Carl is a man who brings joy whenever he goes.?

 ?He loves nature in spite of what it did to him.?

?Carl was given many talents by his creator, but by diligent hard work he overcame them.?

?Some drink from the fountain of knowledge. Carl only gargled.?

?When he opens his mouth it seems it?s only to change feet.?

?Do you get the sense that there?s a village missing an idiot somewhere?? And, ?Carl has the knack of making strangers immediately.?


Elliott Krieter, left, and Bob Feiler haul in the Yap stone money.

Rosinia was followed to the podium by Steve Zitowsky, head of disinformation for the roast, who noted that the club did some research and found that many of Carl?s ancestors appeared before the crowned heads of Europe, ?unfortunately most were convicted and hung.? He traced Carl?s formative years, with early pictures of Carl, who, he noted, ?grew up during the Johnson Administration ? Andrew Johnson.?

Several attendees related their prior experiences of knowing and working with Carl, including past president Drew Michyeta, who said, seriously, that without Carl there would be no Chicago Coin Club, before throwing some jabs at the evening?s roastee.

Winston Zach, one of several Wolf impersonators in attendance who wore a bald skull cap and a Carl-like hat, doffed it to the roastee and announced, ?Hairs off to you, Carl.?

 Mark Wieclaw, a past president, read a letter of praise from Dr. Saul B. Needleman, another past president, unable to attend.

Paul Cunningham, read a letter of praise from Joel J. Reznick, who was not able to be there.

Phil Carrigan said he first met Wolf at a Chicago International Coin Fair in the mid-1970s, where Wolf pitched him to join the CCC.

Lyle Daly looked to find what makes Carl ?Carl? with the presentation of a ?Schematic: Carl Wolf.?

In his letter, Needleman noted he was CCC president the year Carl became a member and he immediately appointed Carl club secretary. Wolf reorganized the office of secretary, changing it into a means of developing contacts with other clubs across the country, Needleman wrote, which has served as a primary source of speakers for the CCC?s regular club meetings and other numismatic functions.

Needleman also credited Wolf with designing the club?s medal, which shows the Roman god Janus, representing the past and the future, and with his work on bringing Perspectives in Numismatics to publication and the Odd and Curious money histories (mostly written by Bob Leonard) into printed versions for distribution at CCC annual meetings.

Reznick?s letter related of Wolf: ?His name is his credo and this is his name. ?C?: Consistently working for the club. ?A?: Always available for any task. ?R?: Reliable and responsible and resourceful. ?L? a leader, always leading the club forward. ?W?: Wise and willing. ?O?: Oratorical and organizational. ?L?: Likeable and level headed. And ?F?: The figurehead of the CCC and my friend.?

Other speakers included William Burd, who took over as master of ceremonies for the awards portion of the roast; and Leonard, who told a colorful tale about the origin of a massive, obviously imitation piece of Yap stone money that was presented to Wolf during the roast. Wolf is a collector of Odd and Curious.

One of the final orders of business saw CCC President Feiler return to the podium to present Wolf the CCC?s Lifetime Achievement Award.
About 40 members and guests attended the roast, including Wolf?s wife Jennie Sochon, who helped in the subterfuge that got Carl to the restaurant for the roast and award presentation.

Those in attendance received a 2.5-inch medal commemorating the event and showing the ?Schematic: Carl Wolf? with his trademark ?chapeau de jour,? ?zero drag hairdo for high speed ?boorsing,?? ?belt-clip water bottle holder,? ?illuminated flip out, 10x ?Geekasaurus? belt clip magnifier? and, most importantly, his ?heart of gold.?

The Roast Committee consisted of Bob Feiler, ?Roast Ring Leader?; William Burd, ?Committee Treasurer?; Steve Zitowsky, ?Disinformation?; Jeff Rosinia, ?Roast Master?; Drew Michyeta, ?Un-Indicted but remains a person of interest?; Elliott ?banner boy? Krieter, ?Decorations?; Robert Leonard, ?The Decoy?; Mark Wieclaw, ?Co-Roast Master?; and Lyle Daly, ?Had nothing to do with this in case of reprisals.?