Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Temple Tuesday: Shirley Speaks Out!

When the name “Shirley Temple” comes up, most people think of the little girl that cheered up movie audiences during the 1930’s Depression with her songs, dances, and positive attitude. In 1972, Shirley performed an even greater service by speaking publicly about her breast cancer surgery. While this may not seem like much in an era of over-sharing, Shirley’s bravery was incredible as breast cancer was a taboo topic that many women were too embarrassed about to mention in public. Accompanying this publicity shot was the following caption:

11/6/72 STANFORD, CALIF: Shirley Temple Black, former child movie star, disclosed 11/6 that she has undergone surgery for removal of a breast because of Cancer. Mrs. Black is shown recovering at the Stanford medical Center here 11/6. She had the operation last Friday.

My memory was jogged about this courageous action when Shirley expert supreme, Rita Dubas, put a video on her youTube channel showing Shirley’s May 25, 1973 appearance on “The Mike Douglas Show.” Guests included Tony Bennett, Muhammed Ali, Corbett Monica (comedian), and Lorna Luft, (daughter of Judy Garland). “As a child, a star that the whole world adored,” Douglas said in his introduction. “As an adult, a concerned American and special assistant to the chairman of the President's Council of Environmental Quality. Here is Mrs. Shirley Temple Black.” Predictably, Shirley’s entrance was accompanied by a piano arrangement of “On the Good Ship Lollipop.” Douglas immediately mentioned a previous appearance on his show where they had shown a movie clip from one of her childhood films. “What kind of feelings does that evoke?” “I feel all of 45 years old,” Shirley replied, “which is what I am!” Shirley was not one to wallow in the past or rest on her laurels of long ago.

Just a few months before, Shirley had written an article about her experience with breast cancer that appeared in the February 1973 issue of McCall’s magazine.

Douglas asked her why she announced the news in this fashion. “It was a shock to me to find out that I had this malignant problem, and I had one day to make a decision between the biopsy and the mastectomy…in other words, the removal of a breast. And so, during that one day between the biopsy and the operation itself, I thought, ‘What can I do to help my sisters in the United States and in the World?’ And I talked to my daughters and my husband, and my son, and decided that it would be best to announce that it happened to me, and maybe that way I could help my sisters to check for unusual lumps, and unusual symptoms, and to go to the doctors regularly, and to do self-examinations.” Shirley received 50,000 letters in just two short weeks after the surgery. She wrote the article the day she got home and finished it in two weeks. “I hope that ladies will read it.…I titled it, ‘Don’t sit home and be afraid’ because I’ve got three girlfriends at home right now that have lumps, and they are afraid, and they’re not going to the doctor, and I keep calling them up. They don’t like to hear me on the phone anymore! But you know, if you don’t make the decision to do this, the alternatives are worse, because you die. It’s that simple.”

The episode shows a very poised and knowledgeable woman who answered candidly all the questions that Douglas asked about her experience. With humor when it was appropriate, Shirley showed all of the world that she was a brave woman who had much to do with her life and was not about to let cancer get in the way. Here is Shirley’s portion of that show; definitely worth watching.

In chatting back and forth about this episode, Rita remembered a recipe that Shirley had shared on television once (probably on an earlier Douglas episode) for Shirley Temple Black’s Quick Dinner. Rita recalls it being a delicious mixture of chopped beef, tomato paste, and vegetables in a skillet. Her mom sent away for the recipe, but it has been lost to the ages. Anyone out there recall or have this treasured recipe?

See more Shirley Temple Black photos at my main website.

Monday, October 18, 2021

Petrified on a Monday

Don’t get petrified by the start of another week; instead, focus your petrification on the tree at Disneyland’s that has graced the Frontierland landscape since 1957. This June 1961 shows “Anna and June.” Perhaps Anna is encouraging June not to be afraid of Mondays. In the background is Don Defore’s Silver Banjo Barbecue,” the only restaurant in Disneyland history (so far) to bear the name of a non-fictional person that was also owned by said individual.

I found this shot that I had taken in February 2012, offering a similar perspective:

Here’s the plaque that tells the backstory:

I hope your weekend is off to a great start! See more Disneyland Petrified Tree photos at my main website.

Friday, October 15, 2021

TGIF: R&R at the Chateau

Remember when Instagram was about posting pretty pictures? And Facebook was for connecting with friends and sharing your life adventures? Nope…me neither. They have devolved into platforms for people to spew out their opinions and anger. I get it; times have been crazy the last year and a half. I just don’t necessarily need to know everybody’s rants and raves. Neither does Willis. So…we packed our bags and went to our zen place: The Chateau Marmont.

Our burdens lifted the minute we entered its historic walls. When my friends hear I have gone there, they often ask, “What did you do while you were there? Did you go see anything?” The answer is usually, “no.” The Chateau is enough. I park my car, and I literally unwind. 

Willis and I sat by the pool and did some research for future blog posts (as well as continued work on the upcoming Daveland book) and even finished reading a book (gasp!). Willis is good about reminding me that it’s time to eat.

Old habits die hard and I still found myself scrolling through Instagram photos. This one from a painting company was tagged “Chateau Marmont.” See the Chateau through the view of the window on the left?

Lo and behold the view from my window:

 The house getting painted. I let them know they were doing a nice job!

While in the room, the Chateau’s music selection is perfectly eclectic; just the way I like it.

Sometimes I pretend I’m from a 60s rock group and explore the fire escape.

Willis knows I’m busy taking photos so he just sleeps a lot and gives me that “do not disturb” look.

During dinner, classic black and white movies are shown (sans sound) in the living room area off the lobby and sometimes the patio:

Breakfasts were hearty:

…and so were the desserts.

A new gate to the pool had been installed since my last visit; notice the “CM” at the top:

When I left, I felt renewed and ready to take on the world again. Thanks as always, Chateau, for being my safe haven from the rest of the world. Until next time…

See more Chateau Marmont photos at my main website.