Thursday, March 9, 2017

the last book I ever read (Mary Astor's Purple Diary, The Great American Sex Scandal of 1936, excerpt six)

from Mary Astor's Purple Diary: The Great American Sex Scandal of 1936 by Edward Sorel:

When Mary had no partner she would, as she later wrote, drink, and her loneliness repeatedly led her to believe, after a single springy night in the sack, that she had found her redeemer. Next up would be Manuel Martinez del Campo, a Mexican socialite and polo player raised in England whose father was in the British diplomatic service.

A woman director from London had introduced them, assuring Mary that the handsome twenty-four-year-old was a class act, and not to worry about the seven-year age difference. Both of them hung back, sharing a lunch and a dinner before deciding they were in love. When Manuel’s father died suddenly in Mexico City, Mary chartered what AP called “the elopement plane” and flew to Arizona, where they had the Yuma curse laid on them at four in the morning before the groom flew on alone to the funeral (they would stage a proper wedding later). Only afterward did Mary think to ask her daughter whether she liked him. Yes, said Marylyn; “I like potatoes, too.”

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