Tuesday, March 08, 2005

8 March 2005

Hollywood Aunts [Dept. of Amplification]
In last Saturday's post on St. Louis (and, by extension, my Missouri relatives), I seem to have demoted by great-great aunt, and my Dad corrects me:

"A quiet correction: You now list, in your
Blog, your great great aunt (Stella Watts) as a [s]eamstress in Hollywood
in the twenties, early thirties. She was MUCH more important than
{t}hat. In that period, Stella Watts was a [f]itter and designer for the
"Holly" Stars. She, also, was a very successful designer for private
couturier contracts. She did {it} for years among the people
who could afford the practice. Yes, she knew Crawford, Lombard, Loy,
Harlow, etc.[,] but her work credits were deeper than

Seamstress? Not quite!"

And a welcome correction it is; I wonder if I'd ever found out if I wasn't publishing this stuff?

Aunt Stell was, however, legendary in the family for her strength of character, adventure, and good sense - I heard about those often. I can recall meeting her only once, when I was very small, on a trip to LA. Her house I remember as shadowed and green, but she was luminous, in the manner of very old ladies whose vitality of spirit shines even brighter as their bodies wither. More than the white hair, you know. For that impression alone, I am grateful.

I could see the debris flow of issues gathering over the weekend, and stood as if mesmerized by the oncoming disasters - Bankruptcy Bill, Bolton to the UN, &c. By now, some have already hit, so more on them later this evening. God, this is going to be a long year!

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