July 27, 1946

July 27th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

Sixty three years ago today Gertrude Stein died at the age of  72.  Alice would live alone for another twenty one years.

Several years ago I wrote a short piece called “Alice: A Reverie, July 27, 1946.”  On this anniversary of Gertrude’s death, I include it here.

GertrudeandAlice's grave, Père Lachaise Cemetery Paris

GertrudeandAlice's grave, Père Lachaise Cemetery Paris

Alice: A Reverie, July 27, 1946

“Then the whole afternoon was troubled, confused and very uncertain, and later in the afternoon they took her away on a wheeled stretcher to the operating room and I never saw her again.” – the final sentence of  Alice’s 1963 memoir, WHAT IS REMEMBERED

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And that's the way it is…

July 20th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

In the previous blog I wrote about well-known people who had met GertrudeandAlice. One American icon that I forgot was T.V. news great Walter Cronkite, who died last week. He met them when he was a student at the University of Texas-Austin.


Walter Cronkite and JFK

Walter Cronkite and JFK

He wrote about that meeting in the university newspaper and it was re-posted this week:



A mutual admiration society

July 17th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

As a boy in Springfield, Illinois, the Land of Lincoln, I recall that the aunt of a family friend once mentioned that she had met Mark Twain in San Francisco. How amazing, I thought, to know someone who had known someone who was that famous!

When it comes to GertrudeandAlice, they met lots and lots of famous people and lots and lots of not  so famous people.   Many of them flocked to rue de Fleurus, rue Christine and their country place near Bilignin while others got to know them on their travels.

It’s been said that there have probably been more people who have written about  meeting GertrudeandAlice than have written about encounters with any other well-known 20th century personalities. They were a very sociable couple.

Who doesn’t know about some of the key players in their circle – Cézanne, Picasso, Matisse, Braque, Gris, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Pound, Wilder, and Van Vechten?

F. Scott and Zelda in the latest 'do

F. Scott & Zelda in the latest hairdo

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At the movies with GertrudeandAlice

July 12th, 2009 § 0 comments § permalink

“The envelope please. The Oscar for best actress in a supporting role goes to …”

Just imagine that in that great  movie year 1939 – the year of   “Gone with the Wind,” The Wizard of Oz,” “Stagecoach,” “Ninotchka,” “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,” and “Wuthering Heights”- GertrudeandAlice had starred in a movie version of  THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY  OF ALICE B. TOKLAS and the double feature at the local Bijou one-screenplex would have been Gertrude’s children’s book THE WORLD IS ROUND produced by Walt Disney!

"The Wizard of Oz" (1939)

"The Wizard of Oz" (1939)

Well, it could have happened, though it didn’t. Studio politics and World War II probably side-tracked plans.

After the success of the Autobiography, GertrudeandAlice visited Hollywood in the spring of 1935 as part of their six month criss-cross lecture tour of America. They were guests at a star-filled dinner party in Beverly Hills and Gertrude had a lively discussion about film with Charlie Chaplin who was seated next to her.

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