Friday, January 09, 2015

Mae West: Hellfire Aroma

The idea of stumbling across an incendiary novel by MAE WEST at a local fire sale aroused a student columnist for the campus newspaper of Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania. It seems "The Constant Sinner" even had a curious aroma of hellfire clinging to the singed pages, which seemed apt.
• • "On a bargain" • •
• • Have you rummaged through the damaged books being sold by a local concern as a result of a recent fire?  No?  Well, make a beeline for said establishment.  For only fifty cents, you can get anything from "Green Mansions" to "The Constant Sinner."  In picking up the latter book, I could not help chuckling after looking at the title and then noticing the smell of smoke that still lingered on this piece of fiction. You may recall that "The Constant Sinner" was written by one Mae West.   . . .
• • Source: gossip column "The Curtain Rises" (anon) in the Weekly Gettysburgian; published on Thursday, 11 January 1934.
• • On Wednesday, 9 January 1889 in Brooklyn, NY • •
• • On this date, John West took his best girlfriend Tillie Decker to Brooklyn's Borough Hall to apply for a marriage license. Mae's mother's name appears as "Tillie Decker" on the form, not as "Matilda."
• • On Wednesday, 9 January 1974 in Los Angeles • •
• • A popular piece of memorabilia for a Mae-maven is anything signed by the icon. One fan snapped up a check written on 9 January 1974. On that date Mae had signed a personal check, made out for $50 in cash and signed by the star in black ink. In the 1970s, $50 sure went a whole lot further than today, eh?
• • On Friday, 9 January 2009 • •
• • It was on Friday, 9 January 2009 that Brian David Phillips wrote about this unusual topic: "Mae West Hypnotic Orgasms?"
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Impressionable young people see the delightfully wicked Mae West grandly rewarded for her naughtiness in "She Done Him Wrong."  What will be their reaction?
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "Every script presented to me, no matter how imaginative a story, was built around a man and a woman. Mae West pictures, as written by me, were built around a woman and men, the more the merrier."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The Australian newspapers mentioned the high salary of Mae West.
• • "Big Incomes in the USA" • •
• • Among motion picture people, Mae West led the list with 339,000 dollars (£67,800). Others were: Marlene Dietrich, 145,000 dollars (£29,000); W. C. Fields, 155,000 dollars (£31,000); Miriam Hopkins, 71,000 dollars (£14,200); Gary Cooper, 139,000 dollars (£27,000); Charles Chaplin, 143,000 dollars (£28,600); Claudette Colbert, 85,000 dollars (£17,000).  . . .
• • Source: Article in The Courier-Mail (Brisbane, Qld.); published on Thursday, 9 January 1936
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •    
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during this past decade. Yesterday we entertained 1,430 visitors. 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3089th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

Source: to Google

• • Photo:
• • Mae West bookcover

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1 comment:

  1. I got a chuckle out of your blog today as I recalled my search for Mae West's novel, "The Constant Sinner." This was pre internet access, so after scouring high and low in Vancouver, Canada, I travelled to Seattle in search for an elusive copy. I stumbled upon a little collector's shop in Wallingford, a suburb of Seattle where the owner happened to be a Mae West fan. After playing four of her 78 rpm recordings on a vintage wind up record player, he produced a copy of the book, minus the cover. He told me that his car needed serving and while he was waiting, decided to drop in to a near by Salvation Army Thrift Store. As he sold rare books, he perused the book shelves. To his amazement, in the "Religious Books" section, he found Mae's tome. The clerk who had placed it there no doubt had no idea what the book was really about! He paid one dollar for it. As we talked and he shared a story about seeing Mae West on stage in NYC in her play, "Catherine Was Great," he realized I was very serious in finding out all I could about her, and gave me the book as a gift! As I travelled to Seattle over the ensuing years, I always stopped off to see him until his death. My pursuit of Mae West brought me in contact with many wonderful long time fans of this incredible woman.