This weekend provided more than it’s fair share of strange occurrences both in real life and on the internet. It also provided at least one or two amazing things which are beginning to make the rounds. In case you missed it…
Bruce Maclin, Loretta Young’s friend and lawyer for the last 25 years of her life releases a statement:
I was Loretta Young’s close friend, confidant, and attorney for many years. Sometimes she called me “Father Confessor”. I liked the role of friend the best. LY talked to me several times about the Clark Gable situation. The things she said were entirely consistent with what Linda Lewis has said. I believe that “date rape” exactly covers what happened. It seemed to me that LY tried very hard to be the best person she could be, but I never heard her be judgmental or sanctimonious, or to proselytize. She did so much to help others and was the softest touch I ever met. Once she was awakened in the middle of the night by a burglar with a gun. He wanted her jewelry, but was disappointed at the quality. He said he thought she’d have better stuff. Actually she had 2 safes and had opened the one with the lesser things. He told her his whole story and she finally wrote him a check which she allowed to clear, not using the opportunity to turn him in. I think he must have known (like everyone else did) that he could trust her. As for LY’s decision to try to pass Judy off as adopted, I believe that and putting her out for adoption were her only choices—she never would have had an abortion. Trying to go public with a rape story would have been a great mistake. Gable was a major star with many fans and a powerful studio behind him. They would have thrown Loretta (and Judy) under the bus in a minute. Whether Loretta had been believed or not, it wouldn’t have been pretty for Judy. Even later when Gable was dead and Loretta retired, the rape story surely wouldn’t have helped Judy feel good. LY loved Judy and gave her a very nice life, at great risk to herself. Many adopted children live good, satisfying lives without the knowledge of who were their natural parents. So far as Gable’s interest in Judy, he just didn’t have any interest. LY told me he visited her and Judy shortly after Judy’s birth and gave Loretta the money for a crib, because Judy had been sleeping in a drawer. LY told Gable she was perfectly capable of supporting Judy but gave him information about a bank account LY had set up for Judy. She said if he wanted to do anything he could make a deposit. He never did. He never tried to see Judy—he just wasn’t interested. In Judy’s book she tells a story about coming home from school and finding Gable in the entrance hall, whereupon he took her into the living room and spent the afternoon with her. I imagine Judy had come to believe that story. LY told me she and Gable and the director of the movie they were making were having a meeting in LY’s living room when Judy and a couple of friends came in after school. LY said she introduced everyone and the girls left to go swimming. That was it. It is really ironic that a person who tried so hard to be a good and to do good and to help others is so maligned. I do not understand the motivation of some of her critics.
And again, I’m sure we’ll have more “total facts” spread about Linda- such as how she’s Loretta’s daughter (nope, wrong) and trying to sell her book (nope, not a thing, thanks for playing) and get to watch the historians and biographers use Super Catchy Phrases like “shacking up” (100% classy) and “adulteress” (gotta be married to be called that) and “he was too handsome to rape” (but wait, what about…nevermind) and other things to indicate that the future is doomed because so many professionals of the world decided that we need to rally around and protect the image of Clark Gable and his overused wang (I’m trying to invent a Super Catchy Phrase there) before we ever ever ever defend Loretta.
It’s okay, though. At the end of the day, we still have this team of fearless warriors that is LITERALLY striking fear into thousands of people, right now, because one of them challenged some preconceived notions and the other two could probably take any one of us.
But speaking of run on sentences that rival only Jeanette MacDonald’s, I have been alerted to many things in JAM Land which I have, admittedly, not read fully yet. I’m in that happy hovering ground of being mad, but not fire breathing angry. I find that I do my best work, in this area. Forgive me, if I have made any mistakes.
1.) The Jeanette MacDonald International Fan Club:
I have spoken to many people and can verify that there were instances of questionable behavior by Clan Clave attendees, done off the clock, so to speak, and away from the actual event. Whether action was taken, I have no idea, but can we please retire this worn out attack on the JMIFC? The club is not a thing anymore. Whatever was done within (or during a Clan Clave but not during event times) that was not on the level, I’ll go ahead and apologize for. I’m sorry bad things happen, and I’m outraged that bad things happen. As I’ve discussed here and with others, I’m not happy with how the club was run, either. There were some great things that are now being overshadowed by the few bad things. We are here to exonerate Jeanette, Nelson, and Gene from the filth they’ve been dragged through, with documents that could have cleared them decades ago. Clara, may I remind everyone, is dead. Tessa is not well. I do not run the JMIFC. Hate for what happened then needs to be separated from what’s happening now. I’m not saying you can’t have it. Have that hate all you want. I do, sometimes. Realize, though, that the hate for two chicks from Topeka has no bearing on letters in Jeanette’s handwriting that say “I love you” to Gene. Does it make anyone feel better to know that I was told NUMEROUS times, back in my newb days, not to contact Clara and Tessa because they would not like me? Maybe they would’ve and maybe not, but a few people with Higher Profiles In Fandom than I certainly thought they’d find me to be a big ol’ nuisance, what with my “CHALLENGE ALL THE THINGS!” and “PUBLISH ALL THE PAPER!” ideals. Judging by at least one letter, even Gene would tell me to GTFO:
So yay, IT IS 2015 AND WE ARE NOT OF THE SAME MINDSET ANYMORE. And really, when was the last time you heard any of us tell newbs that J&N hated each other? Come on. That argument is tired and needs to be taken out back and shot. We might bring it up to say that it was a rumor which USED TO BE spread (and was corrected many times over, before I was even born… except for with Robert Osborne and his intros. Please figure out the story you want to tell, Bob. Thanks.)
Since I don’t see this stopping any time soon, let me turn this over to Norma Nelson McDaniel so we can play, too!
2.) But how do you spell it?
D-I-L-E-T-T-A-N-T-E. Google is amazing. But I will confess that the various misspellings I was seeing as AOL searches were super entertaining. I had no idea who was doing it, until a friend told me it was a discussion among M/E members. Before we get to the Merriam-Webster site to look for meaning, however, please note that I already know. I still find it valid, as I am not well versed in all of cinema history. I’d say I’m holding my own in a few spots, though. Actually, lots of people would say that, so… bye?
Glad everyone’s so gleeful about Nelson drawing a picture of the process of drunk sex? That’s Super Informative and I’m sure he’s giving everyone a slow clap from his puffy cloud like, “YEAH, SHOW ‘EM HOW CRASS, THOUGH. WITH POWERPOINT.”
Upcoming Stuff: I’m doing my best to work out a regular schedule for posts and themes. Once it is all set and I have the official go ahead for my Sunday plans (wouldn’t you like to know??), the schedule will be posted on it’s own tab.
Stay charming, Planet Earth.