Firstly, to warn people, you’ll get 2 blogs this weekend, just that it will be one tonight, and one tomorrow. Firstly because I’m running a bit late to do 2, and secondly, I havent really got an obvious subject for the other blog at this moment. Well, not on the blog where most readers think I’m a natural woman, anyway… So why do this tonight? Well, I’ve got time to do one, and its also a special date.
Yes, someone a ‘little bit naughty’ was born on this date, 126 years ago. How she lastly to 87, given her lifestyle, I have no idea, but she did. Yes, Mary Jane (better known as Mae) West is the lady I’m talking about. Its amazing only to think that by the time she became the ‘saucy minx’ of pre code movies, she was already fast approaching 40! By which point, a few years earlier she had served a short prison sentence (only 10 days) for creating a show so naughty that she upset the authorities. I suspect it would probably be seen as fine now, but back in 1927, well… OK, fine, she set out to upset them, but anyway…
Its fair to say I wasnt upset to be told I looked a lot like a classic era movie star after the first photo shoot I did with a very talented guy in Leeds, the thing that surprised me was that it was Jean Harlow. Well, given I was in my fifties, she died at 26, so… but fine I could see the resemblance to her mother, who would have been closer to my age at the time. But yes, if you’d showed me a set of pictures of blonde, movie stars from the early 30’s, and asked me who I looked most like, I would have said Mae West. So yes, how close was I to being named Mary/Mae Stephanie West, who can say?
I think its fair to say that apart from the sex thing, my attitude to life is probably closer to Mae, than Jean, though the latter was a little minx when she wanted to be, I must say. Oh, a picture of the lady, well? And for comparison?
My next acting part, Mae looking back on her ‘quiet’ life, hmm? Oh goodness, that would be naughty, but nice! Somehow I dont see me being as sharp as she was at 87, even assuming they can rebuild me enough to get that far! One thing is for sure, somewhere, today, she will be celebrating her birthday in style, maybe?
OK, video time. I’m not sure if beyond Steve Harley, any of this band were in the original Cockney Rebel, but its a live version, which they definitely werent back then! And its almost Mae’s most famous line, lets face it
Oh, happy Independence Day, America.
Funny thing was, I’d planned to give this a miss for a few reasons. Firstly, I know people are going to want to hear what tomorrow is like for me, with the EEG Scan, and I try not to do too many blogs, as well as too few in a week. But then someone posted a picture, and well, I had to post it, and it could hardly wait a year, so…
Of course, the funny thing about my connections to the USA, so many of them lead to one state, Oklahoma! Of course its where Clara Johnson was born, in territory time, and not only that, but Kate has pointed out to me, its a highly likely target point for my Irish Great Grandparents at the time, if they’d gone west, instead of to England. Given that would have happened just before Clara was born only makes that even more ironic.
Sadly, Kate and I have agreed that even if I get permission to fly, post scans (which I will, if only epilepsy), I wont be going to Oklahoma this year. I think she’d rather have me nearer home, and with the better facilities in New England close by, and in truth, I dont blame her! But if Clara thinks she’s safe, there’s always next year, by which time hopefully things will be really stabilised!
I cant make plans until after the scans on what I will do, as a lot will depend on where, when, and how much surgery I got done, to solve all my issues. A dear friend (or 2) have made it very clear they’d love to find a way to get it done in the USA, and given some of the recent reports coming out about the NHS, who can blame them? But until I know whats the matter with my brain, no comment. But definitely need to get some bits bobbed somewhere in the near future, I’ve pledged for that, and in truth, it will be nice now to get it done.
Its also fascinating to think where I might be now, if my ancestors had gone west to ‘Oklahoma’? Or did one version of my life have that happen, produce Clara Johnson, and only in the other life did they come to England? I know, silly idea, but an interesting thought. Would I have followed Clara’s route, ended up in movies in Hollywood, would I have followed Kate’s route, to New England. Or might I be a happy housewife home in Oklahoma, with children, who knows?
Oh right, that photo, no I hadnt forgotten. Its a picture of another shy, demure blonde, who would never say boo to a goose. Yes, you know I’m joking I hope, because its Mae West, dressed as the Statue of Liberty. Would I love to wear this dress, you bet I would!
Maybe next year, somewhere in the USA, who knows, but I wouldnt put good money on it!
Right, the video. Its the obvious song, but its ironic about the way politicians pat themselves on the chest, and have this blasting out at rallies. Why, because its actually an Anti Vietnam song, and not deeply proud of what the USA did. But they just look at the song title, not the lyrics, and… God Bless America!
So, yes, fine, its time to stop concerning myself with job hunting, and the like, for a couple of weeks, and look forward to what happens on Wednesday, the flight to Los Angeles, and even more so for me, the stay in Hollywood. Yes, I know, Jean preferred to live in Beverly Hills, but anyway…
Strictly, there is one more job thing before then, got a phone interview at some point tomorrow, but that will be it. One face to face interview on the 30th, after I get back, hopefully after tomorrow, that will be 2!
But yes, when most tourists fly into L.A for a movie related holiday, they are thinking Disneyland, and Universal Studios, and I have no great plans to visit either, far too modern for me. Now, if I could visit MGM, in the 1930’s lol!
So yes, as things stand, with the exception of the baseball game (and Vin Scully is pretty vintage there!), I will be looking back into the past on my trip. The walk of fame stars, the most modern one I’ll be looking for, is Doris Day! The oldest, Mary Pickford, and Clara Bow, I should think. Yes, one or two in between, especially Jean’s!
The Hollywood Museum, as things stand, with a Twitter friend, who knows my love of Harlow, and wants to be there when I see all her stuff, and swoon probably. April is wonderful, and why I already have a picture of Jean’s star, but want to see it for myself. Jean was tiny though, couldnt get into her stuff, even if I was allowed, or tried!
I also plan to get up to Forest Lawns, where she is buried, and pay my respects, though by all accounts I’m unlikely to get that close to her last resting place.
There is one more golden moment I’m looking forward to, a chance to meet the actor, Bruce Glover while out there. Yes, anyone who remembers ‘Diamonds Are Forever’ has seen Bruce, plus lots of other work too, but thats probably the most famous one. I was going to go to one of the acting classes he runs, but have got invited to a private meet instead, which is just a total wow moment for me. The idea I’m going to ring, speak to, and meet a movie star, as I say, just wow!
But no disrespect to anyone (unless Jean’s spirit wants to arrange a meet), the thing that has me most excited, is a party next Saturday, this one.
Yes, that amazing birthday present from James, and Kate. Feel free to say hi, if you are there, and see me.
I have the dress, or I will have, assuming I can be zipped into it, at least. Its a back zip, and with my hands, there is no way I can fully pull up a zip behind my back. So, when she returns tomorrow, I’m going to see if Nicole can zip me into it, and if so, I’ll rig something so I can zip it up myself. Fingers are ‘so’ crossed that works. My plan is to go for the Mae West look (not far off Harlow, only fuller figured, like myself) for the evening, hair, and make up, care of a local salon that has good reports.
One last thing, where the movie is old, but the surroundings are modern, that I’ve been invited to
Yes, it will be last, its the evening before I fly back! Well, unless I make the right contacts, and then…lol! I guess, Jean Harlow, or Mae West mark 2 might happen, but seriously? But look how Jean got her big break, so…!
The video, great artist, and summing up how I plan to see LA, Beverly Hills, and Hollywood
Firstly, let me go back to the last blog, and update matters, and in a good way.
That technical issue, I got a call the next morning from the company doing the interview tests, to tell me that my account had been reset, with another password, and that I was now able to take the test again,at my leisure. It worked, I passed, and seemingly passed the personality test afterwards as well, because they now want to do a phone interview with me, for the thing I ‘really love’, the competency tests.
As I say, its a modern thing, something I personally hate, but it has to be done. But hey, I’m now back in the running for the job, so mustn’t complain.
So fine, when I found out this afternoon by email that I had passed the early stages for another job, and saw I had to make a phone call, I was expecting more of the same. But no, something a little different. I have got to ring what I assume is an answering machine/tape recorder of some kind, leaving all my basic details, and then,
And telling us about something you are passionate about and why.
So not the usual, when did you do exceptional service, something out of the extra to help colleagues, and all that, when my mind tends to go blank, even if I’ve thought it all out in advance, which I do… but this!
At this point, I’m not sure if they expect it to be something work related, or just anything that you feel passionate about, but hopefully the latter, because I will be fine on that.
How does Pre-Code movies, and the Golden age of Hollywood sound?
What, I can hear you saying from here!
Well, in the early days of silent movies, some of them were downright saucy. In the early days of talkies, it was much the same. To say the early Mae West movies were suggestive, would be to put it diplomatically. Jean Harlow wasnt much more of a ‘good girl’ either, back then. A prostitute, a gangsters moll, and a money grabbing, easy going wife were just 3 of her pre code roles.
Then in 1934, the moralists had enough of all this hanky-panky, and brought in something called the Hays Code. This tamed things down considerably, shall we say? For example, that role where Jean was a prostitute, well she ends the film as the moralistic, good girl, despite her nature of work. Post code, a bad girl had to stay bad!
Jean pretty much moved into romantic comedies, became a golden blonde, instead of a platinum one, and charmed audiences that way, which in all truth suited her nature better, and her acting quality improved accordingly.
It wasnt in fact until well into the 1960’s before things became ‘more relaxed’ again moral wise, and indeed, compared to some modern stuff, pre code is almost tame!
So yes, I dont think I’ll have many problems with this challenge, I must say.
The video, what Mae West definitely was, in those wonderful Pre Code days,