Hollywood is a place where they'll pay you a thousand dollars for a kiss and fifty cents for your soul.
Starring in her first film in 1947, Norma Jean Mortensen, better known, and forever immortalized by her stage name Marilyn Monroe, cemented herself as not only a top-billed actress during her time, but came to be recognized as one of America's greatest, and most popular sex symbols. One who stood as the very epitome of shifting attitudes towards sexuality during the transition between the 1950s and 1960s.
Often typecast as the "dumb blonde", and widely perceived as engendering the use and popularity of such a stereotype through her works "How To Marry A Millionaire" and "Gentleman Prefer Blondes", Monroe to this day, remains an enduring, and lasting fixture in Modern American Pop Culture. With the now deceased starlet's birthday having been celebrated not less than a week ago, here are 5 of the most memorable quotes even the characters Monroe herself portrayed, could never have forgotten:
1. "Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring."
So what if people think you're a freak? If being seen as a freak is the price for the enjoyment of being yourself, so be it. Be you're freak'n self.
2. "Give a girl the right pair of shows and she'll conquer the world."
Part of winning over the affection of others is not just being able to form a talent, but rather, possessing a talent for form.
3. "Fear is stupid. So are regrets."
Its one thing to hold yourself back because of stage fright. Its another to miss out on the good show you could have put on.
4. "I don't know who invented high heels, but all women owe him a lot."
Thanks for the shoes, Sir. I've always stood taller, and higher than you. Now I can prove it.
5. "Hollywood is a place where they'll pay you a thousand dollars for a kiss and fifty cents for your soul."
In Tinseltown, everyone is a commodity. A product. Designed to do what the buyer asks, and wants at a price. No more, no less. Even if you are worth more than that which was paid for you.
Although Marilyn Monroe's career and life was tragically met by an unbowed, unprecedented end in 1962, allowing her to dominate The Golden Age of Hollywood for just half-a-decade, her presence, her memory -- forever imprinted on pin-ups, mugs, and movie-posters -- remains, permanently tattooed onto conscience of pop culture. Serving as a reminder to all those entranced, taken by her ditsy, but raptors presence, that despite how those around us will seek to prescribe us an identity due to our appearence, or monetary benefits, there is a part of us -- one the lights cannot touch and the bills cannot bury no matter how far and high they stack -- that cannot be bought or defined. By none other than ourselves.