The ladder of success in Hollywood is usually a press agent,
actor, director, producer, leading man;
and you are a star if you sleep with each of them in that order.
Crude, but true.
(Hedy Lamar staring in Tortila Flats 1942)
1930’s film star actress Hedy Lamarr seems to state the obvious in today’s quote…
yet most of Hollywood has opted to hide this dirty little, yet widely and openly known,
secret for decades.
However, suddenly as if out of nowhere, Hollywood is now in an uproar and aghast
over such open knowledge…think Harvey Weinstein.
Everyone played along.
Most everyone either participated or turned a blind eye…
Until one day…not everyone wanted to keep playing.
Ms Lamarr was born in Austria in 1914 to Jewish parents.
At the youthful age of 18, she stared in an Austrian film that became famous for its controversy.
The film, Ecstacy, was way before its time as it was complete with nudity and
and for an added bonus provided an up close orgasm for good effect.
Lamarr became famous for this staring role although the film was rejected by
Feminist groups here in the United States while being hailed as extremely artistic
My how times have changed.
During that same time, the young Hedy married a much older and wealthy Austrian
He was very controlling of his young wife, treating her more like a treasured doll.
He despised the racy film and actually forbade her from ever acting again.
Lamarr’s life now mirrored the very plot of that film.
Life imitating art, or so it seemed.
No longer able to feel as if she could breathe, Hedy eventually fled to Paris and
later London where she met Louis B. Mayer of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer fame,
who hired her for the American film industry.
Married 6 times, Ms. Lamar was more than just a 1930’s / 1940’s bombshell actress.
It seems that Ms. Lamar had a brain.
A rather highly functioning brain yet one that lacked formal training.
Although Lamarr had no formal training and was primarily self-taught,
she worked in her spare time on various hobbies and inventions,
which included an improved traffic stoplight and a tablet that would dissolve in water
to create a carbonated drink. The beverage was unsuccessful;
Lamarr herself said it tasted like Alka-Seltzer.
An unrelated effort resulted in Fizzies, which became a cultural icon of the 1950s-60s.
Among the few who knew of Lamarr’s inventiveness was aviation tycoon Howard Hughes.
Lamarr discussed her relationship with Hughes during an interview,
saying that while they dated, he actively supported her “tinkering” hobbies.
He put his team of science engineers at her disposal,
saying they would do or make anything she asked for.
During World War II, Lamarr learned that radio-controlled torpedoes,
an emerging technology in naval war, could easily be jammed and set off course.
She thought of creating a frequency-hopping signal that could not be tracked or jammed.
She contacted her friend, composer and pianist George Antheil,
to help her develop a device for doing that,
and he succeeded by synchronizing a miniaturized player-piano mechanism with radio signals.
They drafted designs for the frequency-hopping system, which they patented.
Although the US Navy did not adopt the technology until the 1960s,
the principles of their work are arguably incorporated into Bluetooth technology,
and are similar to methods used in legacy versions of CDMA and Wi-Fi.
This work led to their induction into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2014.
Both smart and inventive, Ms. Lamar remained in the film industry for most of her adult
life until her career, along with her age, began to wane in the late 1950’s and early 60’s.
Sadly, in her older age, she was caught shoplifting twice.
It seems that Lamarr had fallen on dire financial straits.
Eventually, she shut herself away from any sort of public life or visible contact with
the outside world..including her own two children.
She died in 2000 in Florida at the age of 85.
And so whereas Ms. Lamar’s words continue to reach out to us from a distant past,
her words manage to shine a forgotten light on a continuing dark entertainment industry…
an industry our society and culture oddly continue to worship and adore.
We allow these paid performers to do and say things we would never accept from
Take for example the actor Robert De Niro….
The other day, my son and I had each read the latest brouhaha following that latest
gathering of all things elitist, Hollywood and entertainment.
It was the story of actor Robert De Niro’s expletive-laced tantrum while appearing on stage
at the Tony awards.
It seems as if he felt most compelled to do more than his part that evening which was to
simply introduce singer Bruce Springsteen.
Rather De Niro got on stage, and once to the mic, launched a foul-mouthed tirade regarding
the President of the United States.
“F” this and “F” that…he went on and on regarding President Trump.
Lord knows there have been plenty of presidents I’ve never cared for, but due to the fact that
I still hold respect for the office, not to mention respect for our country, I would never have
behaved as poorly as Mr. De Niro.
Never to publicly and verbally bash any one of our presidents, be they good or be they bad…
and since we seem to live in a democracy, a place where folks actually get to vote for
the person of their choice, I’ve had to learn to just grin and bear it through those
years that it was obviously not my choice.
It’s what we do in a democracy.
And then we in turn live with the results…be they good or be they bad.
Then as the next election rolls around,
we get out when the time is right and rally toward the hoped for.
We call such actions living with…restraint, decorum, and civility.
Three things Mr. De Niro obviously is lacking.
The same article in our morning’s reading next moved on the story regarding talk show
host Bill Maher and his own public proclamation that the best we can hope for is a recession.
It seems that in Mr. Mayers skewed thought process a recession is just what the country
needs to get rid of the President.
A recession, really???
The unemployment rate is at the lowest it’s been in years–a 48 year low actually.
It is the best rate for both Blacks and Hispanics that it’s been in decades…if ever.
The economy is equally making great strides as it continues to grow as small businesses
are reporting a feeling of stability and even improvement.
And yet we’ve got an overpaid celebrity whining that we need a recession as that is the only
way we will be able to rid ourselves of the current sitting president.
A president who has negatively impacted our growth and stability how???
“Sure,” Maher says “because I think one way you get rid of Trump is a crashing economy.
So please, bring on the recession,” he said.
“Sorry if that hurts people, but it’s either root for a recession or you lose your democracy.”
Perhaps that’s easy for a multimillionaire elitest entertainer to say.
A recession would not hurt Mr. Maher nor Mr. De Niro not as it would hurt most of
middle to lower income America.
My 30-year-old son turns to me after having read all of this craziness and asks
“why would anyone want something bad to happen to this Country??”
And I’m left scratching my head because I’m lost for any sane answer.
Why shoot yourself in the foot?
Just like draft dodgers literally did…as a last resort from being drafted.
They were willing to risk a limb to save their life,
Maher is willing to risk others lives to cut what he considers
to be a bad limb.
The devolution of our society is in full swing.
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him,
but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.
Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of
the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and
birds and animals and reptiles.
Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual
impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.
They exchanged the truth about God for a lie,
and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—
who is forever praised. Amen.
Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts.
Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones.
In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were
inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men,
and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God,
so God gave them over to a depraved mind,
so that they do what ought not to be done.
They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity.
They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice.
They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful;
they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents;
they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy.
Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death,
they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.