In 1957, what building did John Steinbeck refuse to let be named after himself?  

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John Steinbeck, the American author of such classics as "Of Mice and Men," was a native of Salinas, California.  In 1957, the government of the city of Salinas was thinking about naming North Salinas High School after Steinbeck.

Steinbeck did not want this to be done.  He wrote a letter to the authorities asking them not to rename the school because he did not want school kids (who presumably would hate going to school) to curse his name.

He added that he wouldn't mind having something named after him, but it ought to be something like a bowling alley that didn't do anyone any harm.

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