The Insanity Of Joan Crawford's Memoirs

The Insanity Of Joan Crawford's Memoirs

Let Mommie Dearest teach you how to "live beautifully and successfully"

This is Joan Crawford.

She was one of the 20th century's most successful and famous film stars, but her reputation was ruined after her death by her adopted daughter's memoir "Mommie Dearest", which revealed the alleged and often contested abuse Crawford inflicted on her children. It was later made into a movie which cemented her legacy as a drunken, obsessive-compulsive monster who loathed wire hangers.

I recently managed to track down an (affordable) copy of her 1971 book "My Way of Life", a guide to better living. In it, she imparts her 60+ years of wisdom, offering the reader invaluable lessons in parenting, marriage, careers, and hosting.

To put it simply, she writes like your grandmother if your grandmother were Gwyneth Paltrow. She seems completely disassociated with reality and writes as if she's never met anyone who makes less than seven figures. Her tips, being 45 years old, are dated, offensive, and hilariously impractical, even for a millionairess who hit her peak in the 1940s. These are but a few of the numerous instances of her literary insanity.

On women in the workforce: "Men put up all kinds of objections, all of which cover up their real, subconscious fear that 'she'll come home too tired and won't want to go to bed with me.' They wonder what's going to happen to them sexually. But the fact is that when a woman feels she's done a good job and accomplished something, she's charged. She's ready for sex. Maybe he'll be too tired that night. And maybe he'll get raped!"

On marriage: "Such a pattern of living calls for the same kind of executive ability a man has to develop in his office. It's not easy. It's not easy at all to run a house - small, or, as in my case, large ... give the children all the attention they should have, adjust to day-to-day crises, and be cool, collected, and captivating at six o'clock. Not only must the children and housekeeping be dealt with and finished, the wife should also emerge at this hour "finished" - in the sense that she has all her beauty treatments behind her and is groomed, fragrant, and looking ready for an evening with her favorite beau."

On the joys of giving: "People will say they're not Joan Crawford and can't afford trainloads of caviar ... If it's [your husband's] birthday and he loves caviar, skip the hairdresser a couple of times. Give up a hat that you don't need. You'll find that you won't be giving up anything at all. You'll have the joy of giving to."

On closet space: "That apartment had tall ceilings and I was able to have a double-decker dressing room, with my out-of-season clothes stored on top. Then twice a year I'd switch them around ... my present ceilings aren't high enough for that double-decker arrangement. But if you can do it, it's a very practical device and a space-saver."

On entertaining: "The best parties are a wild mixture. Take some corporation presidents, add a few lovely young actresses, a bearded painter, a professional jockey, your visiting friends from Brussels, a politician, a hairdresser, and a professor of physics, toss them all together, and try to get them to stop talking long enough to eat! It's especially important to have all age groups. I've never noticed a generation gap. Of course I wouldn't want to have hippies come crawling in with unwashed feet, but all the younger people I know are bright and attractive and have something to say. They also dress like human beings. They love to listen, too. They make wonderful guests."

On parenting: "I discovered that I must have instilled a few of the social graces in the children when I let the twins take charge of their own ninth birthday party aboard the Andrea Doria. They invited the whole of the first class and decided on the menu by themselves. There was vodka and caviar, a clear soup, New York cut steak with a large selection of vegetables, a salad, and cheese trays - accompanied by a good red wine. Finally there was a tremendous birthday cake for all the guests, and Dom Perignon. I didn't suggest a bit of it to them. It was entirely their own menu."

On feminism: "It's how [women] move into [the business world] that counts! Men who are prejudiced against women in executive positions have usually had a bad experience with one who swaggered in with a chip on her manly shoulder believing that she had to fight her way up, and fight men to do it. A gal like that can make it tough for the rest of us. Many in the women's liberation movement have done that - but few of them are executives and few are very good to look at. They have nothing to lose but their uncombed hair."

On fashion: "I feel as if clothes are people. When I buy a dress, or buy the fabric to have one made, that's a new friend. Am I to let it hang there and not give it warmth and affection? Course not! People love to do my clothes because I take such good care of them. I have a tremendous respect for fabrics."

On physique: "I sit on hard chairs - soft ones spread the hips."

"Never let your husband see you exercising."

On weight loss: "But the best condition I was ever in was when I was doing What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? in a wheelchair. I had to wheel myself back and forth, turn quickly, and I was the thinnest I've been in years. I weight only 119 pounds. And firm and hard as a brickbat. Get a wheelchair and try doing your housework in it!"

"Regular exercise, all alone, can be boring. If you just can't schedule it for yourself, organize a little neighborhood club ... and compete. Competition is often just the stimulus you need ... a woman will give up anything - from a fudge sundae to a dry martini or a grilled-cheese sandwich - to beat her fellow club members to the slim finish. She may lose a friend or two, but she'll gain loveliness, and her husband's pride and admiration. That's worth a couple of fat friends!"

On dessert: "I did eat ice cream once."

On haircare: "I pull my hair gently to encourage growth, too."

In the 35 years since Mommie Dearest was shown in theaters, Joan Crawford's legacy has been dragged through the mud, and while this book is a 224 page joke completely at her expense, reading between the lines, one can't help but feel a kind of pity for her - and a revulsion at the thought of having her as a mother. Though she came from an abusive home and clawed her way up the ladder of success, she very obviously had some kind of mental health problem which manifested itself in an unhealthy competitiveness and cleanliness, all of which are subtly evident in her guide to luxurious living.

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I'm A Woman And You Can't Convince Me Breastfeeding In Public Is OK In 2019

Sorry, not sorry.


Lately, I have seen so many people going off on social media about how people shouldn't be upset with mothers breastfeeding in public. You know what? I disagree.

There's a huge difference between being modest while breastfeeding and just being straight up careless, trashy and disrespectful to those around you. Why don't you try popping out a boob without a baby attached to it and see how long it takes for you to get arrested for public indecency? Strange how that works, right?

So many people talking about it bring up the point of how we shouldn't "sexualize" breastfeeding and seeing a woman's breasts while doing so. Actually, all of these people are missing the point. It's not sexual, it's just purely immodest and disrespectful.

If you see a girl in a shirt cut too low, you call her a slut. If you see a celebrity post a nude photo, you call them immodest and a terrible role model. What makes you think that pulling out a breast in the middle of public is different, regardless of what you're doing with it?

If I'm eating in a restaurant, I would be disgusted if the person at the table next to me had their bare feet out while they were eating. It's just not appropriate. Neither is pulling out your breast for the entire general public to see.

Nobody asked you to put a blanket over your kid's head to feed them. Nobody asked you to go feed them in a dirty bathroom. But you don't need to basically be topless to feed your kid. Growing up, I watched my mom feed my younger siblings in public. She never shied away from it, but the way she did it was always tasteful and never drew attention. She would cover herself up while doing it. She would make sure that nothing inappropriate could be seen. She was lowkey about it.

Mindblowing, right? Wait, you can actually breastfeed in public and not have to show everyone what you're doing? What a revolutionary idea!

There is nothing wrong with feeding your baby. It's something you need to do, it's a part of life. But there is definitely something wrong with thinking it's fine to expose yourself to the entire world while doing it. Nobody wants to see it. Nobody cares if you're feeding your kid. Nobody cares if you're trying to make some sort of weird "feminist" statement by showing them your boobs.

Cover up. Be modest. Be mindful. Be respectful. Don't want to see my boobs? Good, I don't want to see yours either. Hard to believe, I know.

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The Polar Bears Invaded, What Do We Care?

After all this is on the other side of the world, it can't possibly impact us.


On February 10th, news started circulating about something pretty unheard of; some near 50 polar bears have made their way into the small Russian town of Novaya Zemlya. These bears have been reported roaming around the streets, and to people like us, this seems rather bizarre, and to some degrees fascinating. Florida is the polar opposite of the type of climate these animals live in, and so the majority of us have never seen a polar bear anywhere except maybe in a zoo. Taking this into consideration, it makes sense why we'd see the whole situation this way. After all, how cool would it be to be able to look out your window and see these guys walking around? How many people could say that they've experienced that? Probably not too many!

When you look into the details of this situation though, it becomes evident that this is actually a major nuisance and concern for the people affected. People have reported being scared to leave their homes, or send their kids to school because of the looming threats of these bears and their aggression, and there have been issues reported with the polar bears wandering into human residences. A state of emergency had to be called because of the safety hazard that they pose, and also because there is no known way to get rid of them. They've lost their fear of humans, and consequently, they no longer responded to things like guns being fired off, or alarms sounding.

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When these polar bears wandered into this town, they began scavenging for food. If it were only one or two bears it could be said that maybe they just weren't fit enough to adequately hunt, but when these animals are arriving in the masses it's a major testament to the condition of the environment. The habitat that these bears live in is no longer able to sustain them, and considering the species is already endangered, that means that their habitat is in a terrible state. Some will argue that their habitat decline is due to climate change, and those who don't believe in climate change will protest against that.

I say forget whether or not you believe climate change is real or not; the fact that the environment can no longer sustain a shrinking population is problematic enough, without pointing fingers at a cause. The state of the world is changing, and it's not going to stop with impacting just the polar bears.

People tend to underestimate the importance of environmental issues. We don't really care about things until they're knocking at our front door and interfering with how we go about life. People ignored the fact that the ice stretches polar bears need to hunt have been shrinking, and now an entire town is having their livelihood completely disrupted because of it, for some continuous unknown amount of time. I say that people need to care about this because this could've been any community that is near a rural area. This could've happened much closer to home, with any species of animal that is facing environmental pressures. People need to take this event and learn from it. We need to stop turning cheek to environmental issues until they're hurting us. We need to start taking care of problems as they're presented and stop making taking care of the world we live on such a debate. It was polar bears this time, and unless we act it's only a matter of time before it's something else, and maybe it's us and our neighbors staying inside, too scared to go out.

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