Saturday, August 28, 2010

It's all about Me

Cynthia Grenier reviews a book about four tipplers.

I got to know some of these worthies in varying degrees of acquaintanceship during the sixties and seventies. ....At that time I wrote a column reviewing films and theater three times weekly in the International Herald Tribune. Burton read me, found he agreed mostly with what I had had to say, and began passing me scripts he was receiving practically every day to get my reactions.

Friendship with Elizabeth was slower to develop, but before long, we two females were merrily referring to “your Richard” and “my Richard” (Grenier). Our two Richards found quite a bit in common—apart from drink—and Burton wound up giving “my Richard” a very fine jacket blurb for his first novel...

Then a bit of inside information which the average clod is not in a position to know, not being a friend of celebrities:

In passing, let me note that the author rather irritatingly keeps referring to Miss Taylor as “Liz,” an appellation she never used herself, nor did she appreciate people addressing her thus. And in terms of the Burtons being heavy drinkers: Although her Richard, indeed, could consume a substantial amount of alcohol, in the two years that I spent a fair amount of time in his company, I never found him unable to recite verse, from Shakespeare to Dylan Thomas, other than clearly and flawlessly by the end of any long evening.

I am dying to know what appellation Elizabeth Taylor prefers for herself. The possibilities are endless: Eliza, Liza, Betty, Betsy....even Elizabeth.

And then there's more yada yada about the other souses the book discusses whom our author was personally acquainted with. About the book itself, she has little or nothing to say. It's all about Her.

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