Friday, November 11, 2016

Mae West: Mimic the Acts

In September 1934, MAE WEST sat down for a series of "Me and My Past" talks with the United Press syndicated reporter Leicester Wagner.  We will post excerpts from Chapter #3 in several installments.  This is Chapter 3, excerpt e-e.
• • "Me and My Past" by Mae West • •
• • As Told to Leicester Wagner United Press Staff Correspondent • •
• • Healthy Child • •
• •  I was a healthy child, full of vitality, and even before I was five, convinced my parents it would be all right to let me stay up long enough to see shows with them.
• • They took me to vaudeville, where I saw such headliners as Eva Tanguay, Eddie Foy, Bert Williams and George M. Cohan.
• • Home again I'd mimic the acts. It tickled my mother and father and the neighbors who came in to see the little West girl do imitations.
• • At a church social one day — — when I was five — — I put on an act that convinced my mother, the minister and all others present that I had something.
• • Down the street from the church was Handsome Hal Clarendon — — in the Gotham Theater. My mother had an idea that a theater might be a better background for my act.
• • When she toddled into that theater • •  . . .
• • This has been excerpt e-e.  Monday's post will be f-f — —  the conclusion of Chapter #3.
• • NOTE: This is the 2nd chapter of Mae West's life story as told to Leicester Wagner, United Press.  This syndicated series was reprinted in American newspapers during September 1934.
• • On Tuesday, 11 November 1913 • •
• • Mae West's vaudeville routine was noticed by an entertainment critic for the Philadelphia Times, where some quotes appeared on Tuesday, 11 November 1913.
• • On Friday, 11 November 1932 • •
• • On Friday, 11 November 1932, the Hays Office was riled up.  James Wingate wrote a warning to Mr. McKenzie: "The basic story of Ruby Red is Diamond Lil." Moreover, "If the picture went through this way it would be recognized as the old story and looked upon as a subterfuge and a violation of the agreement ..."
• • On Monday, 11 November 1996 • •
• • An article by Claudia Roth Pierpont — — "The Strong Woman: What Was Mae West Really Fighting For?" — — was printed (page 105) in The New Yorker's issue dated for Monday, 11 November 1996.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Mae West is now working on her new contract by the terms of which she gets $100,000 a picture.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "Don't you see how my life is?  I gotta top myself in my pictures and I gotta watch myself in everything else. My private life has gotta be a model."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The Campus mentioned Mae West.
• • S. M. U. students presented a floor show later in the evening. Mary Winfield, Ardenite, gave impersonations of Mae West, Zazu Pitts, Stepin Fetchit, ...
• • Source: Item in The Campus; published on Wednesday,  3 November 1937 
• • Image: Mae West plays a shady lady who is trying to sell a New York City bridge to a naive foreigner, 1937.
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 12th anniversary • •  
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during these past eleven years. The other day we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 3,500 blog posts. Wow! 
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3572nd 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:


• • Photo:
• • Mae West • in 1937

• • Feed — —
  Mae West

No comments:

Post a Comment