09 August 2014


I've always been a big Mae West fan, and I've been so interested in the new material that's recently become available (Mae West: It Ain't No Sin by Simon Louvish) proving conclusively that she did indeed write her own plays, scripts, and specialty material. Her recent biographers have had access to her private papers, which include handwritten notes and outlines. This is what fascinates me; I know she always kept up her public persona for interviews and suchlike. But what did she do when she was writing? Did she have an office? Did she have a secretary? Did she kick off her immensely high heels, leave the diamonds in the jewel box, and put on reading glasses? What was the behind the scenes Mae really like?

The above photo is, of course, Mademoiselle Fifi, "ze dark-haired woman of mystery" in Every Day's a Holiday.