The Internet Goes Down … and Mr. wOw With It

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Life without connectivity, Mr. wOw discovers, is a terrible thing

There is an old anecdote about Tallulah Bankhead, illustrating her utter helplessness in real-life situations. “Tallulah dropped an egg and stood aside.”

Well —  Mr. minus the basso voice — Mr. Wow was feeling quite Tallulah-esque for several days, after our Internet service crashed, leaving me and B. cyber-less.

Sure, we’d had our problems before, but always quickly resolved, usually through the nimble tech thinking of B. This time there was no swift salvation, even though B. kept telling them (those terrible “thems” on the other end of the line — who still have their internet service — that the problem was not with us, but with the home office or station or whatever the hell it is.)

So there we were, bereft of our computer lives.

And you what? It was pretty scary, realizing how much we have come to depend on the instant communication/gratification of the Internet. For one thing, I couldn’t log onto wOw and respond to you all. This put me in a bit of a narcissistic panic –”But, but … they’ll be wanting to hear from me on my Elizabeth Taylor story!” B. said: ”Calm, down Norma, I think they just want the Rolls.” (B. knows his great movies and a Big Scene when he sees one.)

But then there were all the other news and gossip sites that I don’t necessarily read, but browse compulsively. What, what — has Lindsay strolled off with another tacky necklace … has Charlie Sheen held a knife to some other woman’s throat … have the kids from “Jersey Shore” all contracted STD’s?

I missed the crazy misleading headlines on Huffington and Drudge. I missed e-mailing my few friends. I certainly missed surfing for porn. (Sorry, that’s what men do — we are truly pigs.)

I found myself getting up and going to the computer obsessively, trying to make it work — willing it with the power of my (believe me) very weak mind — to suddenly come to life.

It occurred to me that this is exactly the reason I have resisted a cell phone for so long. Even though I don’t enjoy talking on the landline much, there’s a fear I might become one of those people whom I want to strangle, daily. Nothing but cell phone conversations and communication — texting and sexting and utter drivel. “I’m at the corner, honey!”

But here I was, feeling lost because I couldn’t get online and … basically do nothing online.

I finished two books, and stayed up well past my bedtime to watch PBS specials on Marie Antoinette and Helen of Troy. I’d have done this anyway, but I was especially sleepless and antsy because I couldn’t … send my friend Charles a great new photo of Marilyn Monroe I’d found online, minutes before our service crashed.

To think that only a decade or so ago, we mostly still read the newspapers cover to cover, researched the old-fashioned way (remember the library) and wrote notes and faxed. And faxing was a tremendous innovation. Now it is antique, like VHS tapes.

Back then, we certainly did not log on TMZ, read a boatload of crap and then hypnotically drift to the Comments section so we could see for ourselves just how vile humans can be to other humans.

B. called me a minute ago. We’re up again. I guess that’s cool. He can begin ordering books and jeans and shirts and odd mechanical stuff on Amazon again. (Please look for us on an upcoming episode of “Hoarders.”)

I guess I really missed the porn.

And if the Internet goes down worldwide for some reason, we are all royally screwed. Great movie thriller material here.

But I still don’t have a cell phone. Does this make me a bad person?  (Or is it the porn?)

68 comments so far.

  1. avatar Lizzie R. says:

    That’s just a tragedy, but know it’s akin to the end of your life. I recently spent 6 hrs. with a tech and our conversation consisted with my saying “I dont understand you.” My problem was resolved only to have the entire scenario repeated the next night. It’s just marginally fixed now and takes me forever to get online, but I haven’t the energy to go thru the whole maddening thing again, so I muddle along grumbling and cursing. Microsoft sent me a questionaire re their service. My answers were not polite. Glad you finally got it solved and are back with us again. It is the end of the world. However, several yrs. ago I was without my computer for 5 days. After my initial breakdown I discovered I was getting so much done unlike I had for  yrs. It’s all a huge crapshoot.

  2. avatar Mr. Wow says:

    Dear Lizzie…I guess if it had gone on a few more days I would have simply accepted it.  And just be connected at work. 

    It certainly pulled me back to the late 1990′s, when life moved along just fine with use of the SEND button.  Also–I knew a little less but absorbed a lot more.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      …without the use of the send button.”  Someday I’ll slow down when I write. 

      • avatar Jane H says:

        Cricket flip phone $45 a month unlimited text and calling…. it’s all I need and I refuse to be ashamed in the presence of my tech-savvy money-spending friends. So there!

  3. avatar Baby Snooks says:

    Back in 1997 the office manager at a real estate firm told me that within ten years you wouldn’t be able to do business without the internet. I thought she was nuts.  She wasn’t. And within five years you really weren’t able to do business without the internet.  And cellphones are no longer just cellphones. They are mini-computers. I have passed on the “new” technology. But am stuck with the “old” technology just the same. And it is terrifying when it goes down. I can do without television. I feel completely shut off from the world without the internet. And of course even if you don’t havce a cellphone you can still use the internet to “call home.” You don’t really need a phone. Unless the internet goes down. Then you no longer have the internet. Or a phone. I like my land line. It never goes down. I spent 11 days after Hurrican Ike with no lights but I had a phone and candles so I was able to still gossip. The old fashioned way!  It was kind of nice to hear a voice for a change.  And of course I could be more “dishy” since there was nothing in writing so to speak. Although of course I do always keep in mind Little Miss “Hold On I Have to Change the Tape in the Recorder” in Los Angeles who recorded everything for 20 years. Without asking. Or telling. Don’t ask, don’t tell indeed.  I’m a little more cautious. She of course went on the internet finally. As did Elizabeth Taylor. That was the defining moment for the internet. Emails from Elizabeth Taylor. Maybe she found out about LIttle Miss “Hold On I Have to Change the Tape on the Recorder” and deciided the internet was safer than the phone. Particularly with friends who might tell all. Or sell the tapes.

  4. avatar Richard Bassett says:


    Don’t worry, Mr WoW, it’s not like I pictured you hanging yourself at some shrine on Christopher Street with the words “Forever Liz” written across your forehead in ruby red lipstick. Well, maybe I did think that for a few seconds and then quickly came to my senses. You, like I, view her with an objective eye and enjoy the tiny bits of information we receive from the insiders. We are able to put things into perspective. Remember, in 1985…I treated her as if she were a social worker because that was the type of activity that she was doing. In 2010 it was: your Highness. Like everyone else, my computer has crashed mid sentence for no reason. I save everything every thirty seconds and did have to wait for a correctional DVD, only to find out that I had one all along. Making the YouTube videos took about a half of a year strictly being online. I will never repeat that again!!! My modem goes out from time to time, but my provider has told me how to correct it. Take the main connect wire, disconnect, hit it on a wooden surface hard a few times and the reconnect. It works like a charm. How archaic! But, unlike past years, I’m on the computer much less and take much longer breaks….and actually go out into the cold. It’s simple. I made it simple. On Twitter, it was becoming a 12 hour day of posting, reposting, finding information, replying and being social to 5000 people. And I’m not kidding. If I feel worse after being on my PC than better, then this is a red flag. I sign of unbalance. Now, I just do my thing…am happy with it…and let it go. I stopped blogging entries long ago, though I had a good number of readers. I ran out of things to say…and was certainly not going to delve into my personal life. I hate being on the phone, my cell phone rings and I push ‘send’ to hear who it is and it hangs up. I couldn’t care less about trying to understand the 50 page booklet that came with the phone. Week-ends, I could do very well not having a PC but I do…and this is one way that we connect. I see my one on one people through-out the week and talk to them as I would on a PC. But I get to see an instant reaction, the conversation make take several twists and turns, abstract, non-fictional or confrontational. It is hard to do that on the PC as people get the chance to feel their 100% insensitivity (feelings hurt) before there is a change in dialog or before some ignore button is pushed. There are no such buttons in real life. In real life, I problem solve minute after minute without time to dwell on emotions for hours on end, so together, the PC and life work. The telephone…not so much. Due to my carrier, I have been without the PC for a week or two at a time and never felt the frenzy of having people wonder where I am.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Richard…people are never in a frenzy to know where I am. 

      Where have I gone wrong?

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:


        Real people can check in daily…in person, no less. When I had a kidney infection in the summer and in the hospital, I was off Social Media for a month. I was inundated with direct messages, cell phone messages, land line messages, calling the local police to check in on me (those few who had an address) and back and forth tweets of terror as to where I could be. No one else was aware of others intervention methods so it was all just ‘too much’. I learned an important lesson. Leave social media alone for a few days, here and there. This could also be applicable to our society…if we are accustomed to seeing someone, and then suddenly don’t, we wonder… It is human nature. My cell phone is as basic as it gets and all I really say…when outside, and the damn thing rings…is that ‘I’ll call you once I arrive at my destination’. It takes 15 seconds.

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      Thiings did change a little when the dame became the Dame and it went to someone’s head. Not sure if it was hers or the entourage’s. 

      Banging things does work. Used to work on my PC until I banged it once too often I guess. Fortunately I kept my old laptop. Which I think predates Windows 98. HP couldn’t believe it still worked. But it does. Well. for the moment anyway. Will hopefully be back in business soon with a new PC. Well, a new used PC. . Baby Snooks is notoriously cheap as well as notoriously everything else I guess.
      I could never understand the appeal of Twitter or anything else that limits the number of characters in a message. It has become a problem on Facebook. So I enjoy reading eveyrone else’s posts. And then respond by email.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      I always hated tests.  Maybe because I almost never passed.  This one was okay.  I might have gotten a B. 

      I’d rather not re-take it, however.

  5. avatar phyllis Doyle Pepe says:

    MODERN ENGLISH
    I’ll stop the world & melt with you…

    Words in any language suddenly cease
    Hanging suspended in a world wide net.

    Where would we go from there?
    What spider brave enough to hold
    Tongues at bay
    For how long?

    The spinning itself would be enough
    To do the poor creature in.

    Silence—if only for one day—
    Gets one thinking
    Which is a good thing—a rare thing?

    Ah, and you—hush! It’s just we two now
    And we’ve never really needed
    Words anyway.

    2005

    • avatar Paul Smith says:

      “Silence, if only for one day, gets one thinking…” brings on my Wordsworthian mood. 

  6. avatar Daniel Sugar says:

    When you didn’t (immediately) post following the news of Elizabeth Taylor’s death, I actually was wondering what happened to you. (Now I know.)

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Daniel…

      I must say, it was startling to be “unconnected.”  B. kept coming in saying shouldn’t we start herding the sheep  and chickens and chop some wood for a fire? 

      Of course, my friends with cell phones and blackberries were all, “Oh, see—if you had a cell phone you’d still be on top of things.  You could write all your silly Elizabeth Taylor stuff.”

      True.  Eventually I have to  break down and invest in a bare bones cell.  I don’t even like to talk on the landline anymore, so I honestly don’t think I’ll become a constant cell chatter.  But even the least expensive phone and policy costs something.  I’m terrible at budgeting the few bucks I have.  And I am resistant and resentful at the idea of taking a less expensive lunch, cutting out the after-work margarita(s) or not jumping into a taxi now and then.  If I added that up, I’m sure i could afford a cheap phone. 

      Arrgghhhh!!!

      • avatar Daniel Sugar says:

        The way to avoid huge cell phone bills is to buy a cheap disposable phone and just add minutes as you need them. (You’ll almost never use it because you’ll be extremely aware of how much each minute costs, but you’ll have a phone that you can use in case of emergency – and that’s probably a good idea.)

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear Daniel…Thank you–please come and help me buy one! 

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Maybe you should go to AT&T and set up an acount for Mr. Wow and post the account number and we can all chip in although I suspect as popular as you are you could probably turn the phone in at the end of the contract and retire on the “credit” on the account!

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Of course, my friends with cell phones and blackberries were all, “Oh, see—if you had a cell phone you’d still be on top of things.  You could write all your silly Elizabeth Taylor stuff.”
        __________________________________________________________

        The recollectiosn and memories and stories aren’t silly. They’re fun. She was fun. Even when she was dreadful aand later when she was “fuzzy around the edges” and you swore you didn’t want to have anything to do with her, she was fun. And had fun.

        But, well, she did get “fuzzy around the edges” although I suppose it was just everyone around her was “fuzzy around the edges.”  You missed some stories over the weekend. One I missed was Colin Farrell. Who is giving interviews about how he met Elizabeth Taylor. So far he hasn’t said.  He is “fuzzy around the edges” as well.  Maybe “fuzzy around the edges” is just more fun. I don’t know. I sort of “disconnected” during the Michael Jackson saga.  I was going to “reconnect” during the Arnie Klein saga but she hit Twitter before I hit the fax machine.  Now there’s Colin Farrell. No doubt a story there. Fuzzy but fun I suspect. 

  7. avatar Paul Smith says:

    Couldn’t you have gone to nearby deli or cafe to use a PC? Recent studies show phone usage, cells incuded, is in decline.  Why pay for more access to noise?  Then again, shareholders will love you.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Paul…thanks!  as always, you are very sensible.  But I’m not.  However it is good to know that I have people in my cyberworld who can be earthbound, where I am either in the clouds or up my own ass.

  8. avatar Miss Lee says:

    A good friend and I were recently remembering a time when folks called and you weren’t home, they just called back.  Maybe they would get you, maybe not…no big deal for the most part. Lately I have been taking “off the grid” Sundays where I do not communicate with anyone or leave the house.  It has been driving some folks crazy.  So I have accomplished something afterall. 

    As fo the porn, it doesn’t make you a bad person, only a guy wasting time.  Women may not waste time viewing porn as much as men but, if you ask me, going to the mall to shop as a hobby is right up there and that appears to be a largely female wasting-time activity.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Miss Lee…

      I do have weekends where I don’t go out (most weekends!) or go online.  But to suddenly know I couldn’t go online was something of a strain. 

      As I said, it did remind of the good old days of….just letting the phone ring. And luckily I enjoy reading.

      I’ve never shopped online.  Personally.   B. does and if I want something (The Beatles CD Box Set or some nostalgic emollient from The Vermont Catalogue)  I let him do it for me online.  I rarely shop at all these days.  I dont even window shop. Reminds me too much of when I had money to shop–or thought I did.  (I abused my credit cards terribly.)

      • avatar Miss Lee says:

        I too am on shopping restriction.  Went a bit nuts on line a couple of years ago and now paying the piper.  Ah well, I do have some nice jewerly….. 

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear Miss Lee…and I’ve still got some excellent Armani  shirts.

        Still…it’s painful to recall my reckless abandon. 

        Oh, it’s not.  It was fun. 

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      Believe it or not I have a friend who still has no answering machine at home even though her husband is a doctor. Before the cell phones, they both had pagers. He answers his cellphone. She does not and her message is the number at the office. And you cannot leave a message. They both still have pagers. Hers is only for her children in an emergency. And sometimes she turns the ringers off on the phones at home. 

      Heaven for me is still to have an answering service with bridged lines so I can listen in to see who is calling and take the call if I want to or to be able to just  have the service put a call through from someone I want to take a call from on the other line. I was listening in one day and couldn’t place the name Roger Wall and hung up and later checked and had a message from Roger Wall calling for Elizabeth Taylor. The service of course wanted to know if it was the Elizabeth Taylor. I told them no it was a realtor.  I didn’t call back. He didn’t call back.  Someone else however sent my note and his notes about my note and mailed them back to me.  Suddenly I was no longer living in Townhouse 39 but Teepee 39.  I suspect someone at amfAR thought everyone in Texas lived in teepees. And she is as clueless today as she was then.  A proposed benefit. Which I gave up on after I gave up and called Chen Sam.  Nice idea. Just wasn’t meant to be. Atlhough I had bought some proposed “favors” for the big spenders. Three little Lalique fishes. I had three. Elizabeth Taylor had three. If they’re in an auction I mayh buy them back since someone stole mine.

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        Answering machines? Like from 1985? And an answering service? Like from 1975 ( remember ‘Butterfield Eight”) These methods are outdated and I do not even know if they are available anymore. Almost all phones (in this century) come with voicemail. Even cell phones come with voicemail. And you can still screen your calls. I answer the phone no matter who is on the other side. I avoid no one. I have no bill collectors and telemarketers, I just hang up on. There is nothing worse than having to screen your calls. I wouldn’t want to live in a world like that.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        You apparently have never been stalked. Which is why I went the answering srvice route in the late 80s and eaerly 90s. Then I put in what are called call interceptors. YOu called, you entered the code, the call went through.  Then I had to put in two more lines for people who couldn’t remember the code. Or the code of the week.  He had a friend at the phone company. Who tapped my lines. To get the codes. I really should hace written a book. Or two. Or three.   I hace managed with just an answering machine. With the factory recorded voice. But miss the answering service. And yes people still do use them.  Along with answering machines. Some do like to screen the calls. Which you can’t do with voicemail. Caller ID helps. Unless it’s an “anonymous” call.  They have something called call manager to block the “anonymous” calls. But they can leave a message,. And some do. By hanging up at the beep. nd round and round it goes. 

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        OMG, Baby

        No stalkers (that I know about…but isn’t that the point). Your post reminds me of an FBI/CIA episode of “Law and Order”…either that or witness protection, but if it works for you, that is all that matters. I can still screen while the caller is going to voicemail but I’m going to answer it no matter what. I will never be intimidated by a device that is in my home. next to my bed. You call…and then I decide what to do with the call. I was an actor in Hollywood when answering machines came out. Of course, they were a bit complicated in the beginning.  People were still skeptical and used a service…but with a machine it was one less bill to pay, but they’ve all disappeared.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        It was, well, not fun. And twice already. No doubt my charming personality attracts them. I was told by someone who worked with Gavin de Becker’s office that most likely it is the people I know. They wanted to know them too. I cut them off. They didn’t like being cut off. Probably makes sense. I would prefer to think it’s my charming personality. And my sex appeal. of course. But I know better.  I try to keep a sense of humor about it all. Albeit dark humor.

        When things returned to semi-normalcy I kept one of the call interceptors on my fax line. Which I found took care of spam faxes. But I also gave the number to people who were pushy about wanting my number. They dialed the number. And got this “enter four number security access code.” Followed by a dead line.

        Answering machines went through a silly phase. With silly messages. Some even had pre-recorded Rich Little “celebrity” messages as I recall. I had a friend who was a mimic. And I had all sorts of people answering my phone. My favorite was Zsa Zsa. I think it was “Dollink, I’m busy, ze secretary’s busy, ze maid’s busy, ze poolboy’s busy, everybody’s busy. But leave your name and number and someone will call you back when we’re not busy.” But some people were just plain boring with their message. The worst was ”leave it at the beep.” Which also seemed to be the most popular message.  The music arrived with cellphones. Nothing irritates me more than having to listen to two minutes of country & western or rap just to leave a message. I wasn’t real thrilled with a friend who liked Mozart either.  

        The phone situation was not ideal. But you do what you have to do.  I was in real estate so the answering service was necessary although they did get a little unnerved by the breather calls. I took a breather so to speak which is when I put in the call interceptors. It was fun for about six months after I met him. Sort of.  We were known at the Chateau Marmont as The Burtons.  Suffice it to say that the hallways were not filled with the sound of music.

  9. avatar Daniel Sugar says:

    (Happy to help you buy a phone.)

    P.S. I’m relieved your absence was caused by a computer malfunction – glad you’re okay.

  10. avatar Andy C says:

    Mr.Wow, you may just need to get a Blackberry for insurance.  You can hide it from yourself until the day you need it for just this sort of emergency. 

    I felt your pain.  Having been housebound more than usual lately, I would go nutso without the internet.  Do you watch what’s on television?  Ugh!  The newspaper is now two columns wide and three pages long.

    So glad you’re back with us and I do want to hear your Elizabeth Taylor story. 

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Daniel…

      I know, I know…I’ve got to get real on thiis cell phone stuff.

      As to ET, you can read Mr. Wow’s First Tine with Liz here.  I think it’still up.  (as the actress said to the bishop)

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I hope that’s not the only story. I think she would enjoy everyone sharing their stories.

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear Baby…believe me, everybody will.  And in fact, the tale-telling has already begun. 

        As we know, you’ve got quite a fund of anecdotes yourself! 

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Well some I won’t share simply because she was so nice to me and I really drove her up the wall through the years. “If you ever need anything…” So I wrote. And called. And faxed. Usually for something for a silent auction.  I had an artist do a caricature of her as Cleopatra for one silent auction. He did three. I sent her one. He was apparently a friend of a friend of hers which I didn’t know. And she sent him this really nice thank-you note.  It may end up in one of the auctions. Along with two novelty eggs another friend did for her. One a “Red Ribbon” egg and the other an egg with the logo of her foundation. My friend was thrillled when she got a thank-you note. My friend sent me another of the “Red Ribbon” eggs. I sent it to Mathilde Krim.  Who never sent a thank-you note. To anyone. My friend made a third which I then put in a DIFFA silent auction. The  nicest thing she did was that night I gave her number to someone who had been a DJ at Studio 54 but had always missed her. I thought, oh, I’ll be in big trouble. Instead she talked to him. He was dying of liver disease. Not sure if he told her that. They had mutual friends. He was just so thrilled. That just summed up how nice she really was. So different really from the public persona of the Hollywood Star.  She was, really, Earth Mother. Taking care of us all. If we needed anything, she was there.  Not a friend,  But I certainly considered her one. If I had a miillion dollars the check would be on its way to the foundation.  My thank-you note. Eventually I will send one. Maybe not a million dollars. But whatever I can.

        The really fun story that I really probably shouldn’t tell had to do with another fundraiser and a “faux pas” on her part and Mathilde Krim’s part. I sent a note.  Referred to her as the Wicked Witch of the West and Mathilde Krim as the Wicked Witch of the East. I got this call. “Who the ____ are you? Glinda?”  I hung up. Got a note from the secretary.  “Miss Taylor agrees with you that _______ were treated unfairly.”  There was a third wicked witch. Of the South. A gossip columnist who was chairing the fundraiser. And who sided with Mathilde Krim. I sent the note to her. It started World War III.  Which I thorougly enjoyed through the years. I should say it started World War III finally. I was in the gossip column in the other paper. But never hers. Banned I was. Early on I lied to her about a divorce. I thought friendship was more important than an item for a gossip column. She didn’t apparently. Despite the ban I continued to fax items to her. Which she would run. And which she didn’t know everyone knew obviously came from me. Despite my being banned.  The friend I lied to her about was a mutual friend. She came to town later. Despite her dictum that she would not run items that appeared in the other column, she ran two about our mutual friend. I felt, well, vindicated. I suppose I had won the war. Every publicist in town couldn’t believe it. I had fun along the way too. And am forever grateful for that note. That alone worth a million dollar thank-you note.  

        Who knows what lies beyond this maelstrom called life? I do think some of us have such incredible energy, passion as she called it, that it has to go somewhere.  So I truly believe there is this magnificent new star somewhere in the heavens. Called simply Elizabeth.

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        Sorry baby, but without names…I have no idea what (or who) you are talking about. It is impossible to follow a story full of pronouns. “Who is: she Who is: her Who is: a friend
        Who is: a mututal friend.” Maybe in your mind, as you tell the story, you are telling it with specific people im mind but I get lost after the first sentence (you can trust us all here). Your views are sincere and interesting, but the stories are just too vague. Love you, though!

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I intended you to get lost in it. If I named names, well, then I really would have told a story I really shouldn’t have told. And probably really shouldn’t have told even the little bit of this one.

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        Biography author David Bret is a friend of mine. He has written many books on celebrities…after they have died. I take him with a grain of salt when it comes to Elizabeth but he does have a ‘tell all scandalous’ biography that he wrote a few years back, and it could not be published until after Elizabeth’s death to avoid horrendous law suites. This decision was made either by Barbara Berkowitz or the book’s publishing company.  Well, last week he told me that it will be out within a few weeks. He thought I would be mad at him, of course…I’m not. It is titled, “Elizabeth Taylor: Ultimate Sexuality”….or something like that…he has Sarah Taylor being a part time lesbian, and Burton a bisexual. I can only imagine rest what is about. When asked about this tell all book, Elizabeth stated, “David is a shit, but a loveable one” so it can’t be all that bad. She knew the book was coming out on the heels of her funeral.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I think I dread the coming flood of books and magazine articles simply because there was a private part of her life that really should be allowed to remain private. But, alas, that is not the way it ever is.  For anyone.  I suspect what is coming will make the memories of tabloid headlines seem kind in retrospect. 

        As for lawsuits everyone forgets there are children. From three of the husbands. Who are perfectly capable of suing. And who might.

        As for Burton, there is also a widow. Who loved him vey rmuch. And who may also sue.

        I think what bothers me most is the effect all the “tell-alls” will have on herl legacy which is the foundation. It may impact the large donors who “looked the other way” and only saw someone who committed herself to fighting not only a disease but discrimination against those with the disease not only in this country but throughout the world and who wanted to ensure there would always be a funding base for organizations that had no other funding base.

        The books will never be on my shelves. The magazines will never be on my coffee table.

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear Baby and Richard…the Elizabeth shit is going to hit the fans amy second.

        This, that, and the other thing won’t really matter.  I think I know who Baby is, and she probably knows who I am.   Cool.  But we’re not telling.  And Richard, you know plenty, too. 

        Some of what we hear will be good, some bad, some of it in-between.  None of it will be told about a person who had any kind of normal life or perspective.  That she managed to be as human and humane as she was, is a miracle.

      • avatar rick gould says:

        Tell-alls usually say more about the person doing the telling, frankly.
        But the Internet just fuels the fire. Which the masses routinely take as fact.
        Then it’s on to the next scandal du jour.
        Regardless, I think Elizebeth Taylor’s image is pretty fire-proof.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        None of it will be told about a person who had any kind of normal life or perspective. 
        ____________________________________________________________

        None of the “child stars” from the 30s and 40s had any kind of normal life or perspective. Part of them never grew up. Because they never had a childhood. And reality is something that they sometijmes simply cannot see. But eventually do.  In the worst way. As she did a year ago with all the “revelations” about Michael Jackson by her “good friend” Arnie Klein which relected on her as much as on Michael Jackson and probably were a portent of the “revelations” about her that may come. Schadenfreude at it worst. Pulling people down into the gutter with you. Kitty Kelley has been replaced by Perez Hilton.  The problem is Elizabeth Taylor was never in the gutter with anyone. Even when those she was with were in fact in the gutter. 

        She also kept secrets. Sad that those whose secrets she kept probably won’t keep hers. 

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I’m dying to know who you think am and who you think I think you are although of course who I think you are doesn’t matter to you since you already know who you are.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I inadvertently left you a huge clue yesterday by inadvertently clicking on something I shouldn’t have. Actually I left it for someone else. I tried to unclick it. Oh, well.

      • avatar Jessica Burnette says:

        Mr. Wow, I was one who said I would never have a smartphone because I would never have any use for it.  My cell carrier actually has a data plan that is cheaper (thanks to my employer’s discount) than a standard talk/text plan, so I got a Blackberry Curve about six months ago and have to admit I use the bells and whistles more than I ever thought I would.  GPS is great on the go even just for looking up business phone numbers and addresses.  It also comes in handy at my work because I have diagnosis codes and a unit converter at my fingertips.  I also like the app that lets me take pics and send them digitally to my pharmacy’s photo lab to be printed.  My boyfriend has an app that helps him measure lawns, even.  It may not sound glamorous, but it is a great tool for a lanscape professional like him.  See the light, Mr. Wow!  We miss your columns when you are net-less!

  11. avatar Pdr de says:

    Have you noticed, Mr. Wow,  that you get more responses to your articles than everyone else?  That’s because you’re down-to-earth and funny and everyone likes you!  Suggest you buy an inexpensive cell phone at Wal-Mart and buy a card that gives you 60 minutes of phone time – sometimes you even get an automatic update of another 60 minutes. Every three months you have to buy another 60 minutes.  Sometimes I have to phone friends to us up the additional minutes because you must buy those 60 minute cards every three months. Glad I wrote about this because I just realized I have to do that today or tomorrow.  I use my cell only when I travel and at no other time (unless…I have extra minutes to use up. Not as much fun as other cell phones but you can take pictures with it and you can do other things with it to, but I don’t.
    I hope you never lose your Internet service again – would hate to see you repeat the trauma.  However, those porn pictures could contribute to an increase in your blood pressure.
     

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Pdr…nah–Margo Howard always gets the big response.  

      Well, she gives good advice.  I give  a lot nervous tension and instability. And bad spelling.

      But as to the Internet, it did pull me back to the fact that we all survived without it. And will have to again, when the next Dark Ages hits us upside the head.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I bet during the Dark Ages people sat around a table by candlelight after dinner and gossiped. The internet hasn’t changed that. It has merely given us more to gossip about. 

      • avatar chipgiii says:

        lol….and I would be willing to bet you are right!

  12. avatar Richard Bassett says:


    I remember one statement made particularly by Liza Minnelli a few days after Michael Jackson’s death: “There are a lot of things that are going to come out to the public now, and it is not going to be very pretty” So, I waited. The only news worthy stories had to do with Michael allegedly meeting a rather chummy office clerk (?) at Arnie Klein’s office and they became lovers. Stated by Arnie, himself. He never denied it and a massive number of MJ’s fans ranted about their hate for Arnie for saying such a thing; receiving death threats and an obviously not pleased Elizabeth Taylor. Then the lover: Jason Pfeiffer told the press that the story was true. As if being gay was worthy of being condemned. But that was it in terms of news. If Liza thought that news would be shocking…it was, but only for a few seconds. What on Earth (starting with David Bret next week) could they possibly pull out about Elizabeth that will ever have any significant importance?

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      You must have missed Arnie Klein claiming to be the biological father of Michael Jackson’s children. He should have been thrown off the board of amfAR and tossed out of UCLA and into a gutter where he belongs. Please. Enough of dragging everyone down into a gutter along you. As for Michael Jackson  being gay, there is nothing wrong with it. But there is something wrong with someone else telling the world that he was gay. It was Michael Jackson’s decision to tell the world if he had chosen to do so. He chose not to.

      What is it about some gays and lesbians that they demand everyone stay out of their bedroom while taking it upon themselves to invade everyone else’s?  Elizabeth Taylor stayed out of everone else’s bedroom. Everyone else should stay out of hers.

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        This all proves that Liza Minnelli’s statement is somewhat true. Maybe she was only talking about Arnie (even I forgot the paternity issue) but I sensed that she knew more info. Well, you are correct. Michael never announced it. Whether it is true or not, once it is out there…it is out there. His “lover” (an equal partner in the relationship) may have chosen to release that information, as it was his issue too. Again, who knows? Who cares? Arnie’s statement came out of left field, as a physician and a friend. This was more painful (for Elizabeth) than the actual information, but really…the info has come and gone, and the world continues to turn. Still, today…some gays are ostracized personally and publically when ‘coming out’. I have never believed that an announcement of this orientation needs such headlining importance. It is all a case by case, and an honest answer (if the situation legitimately presents itself) is all that is required. Gays are certainly part of the definition of a ‘fan’ and want any and all information that they can get about their icon. It is not specific to gays that they need to know the facts of Elizabeth’s love life exclusively. That is the definition as a ‘fan’.

  13. avatar Mr. Wow says:

    Nothing terribly shocking is going to come out on Elizabeth.  It will just be more of what we already know–more tales of drugs, drink and her very rich, ripe juicy sex life.    There will be lovely anecdotes about her kindness and generosity.  There will be less lovely stories of demanding, spolit behavior.  She was human and had many aspects to her personality, and many years of liviing during which time those aspects morphed, one way or another. 

    Of course, there are already really crazy things out there—like Marilyn Monroe and Eliz having a romantic tryst in a Las Vegas ladies room!  That, supposedly, is from her  “secret autobiography.”   Yeah. 

    Ava Gardner once shrugged off gossip with , “People believe what they want to believe.”  Incredibly, there are people who will want to believe MM and ET got in on in a bathroom. 

    I want to believe that Donald Trump is just kidding around about running for president.  OtherwiseI might have to toss my TV out the window and unhook my internet.  I wouldn’t want a strong connection to a world in which Mr. Trump might become our Commander In Chief.

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      Well the week of mourning is over and the Daily Mail has marked the end of the week of mourning by running a story about Elizabeth Taylor having been born after a sex orgy her parents attended at which point they drove to London to hide their having been at the sex orgy and added a little twist to that by stating that her father wasn’t really her father.
      That definitely tops the reported tryst with Marilyn Monroe in the bathroom. Which I don’t believe simiply because the reported tryst Marilyn Monroe had with Joan Crawford probably turned her completely off of women. And probably men as well for awhile.

      I suspect the lawsuits are going to be worth more than the art and the jewels.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        And now the National Enquirer. A source tells us that Elizabeth Taylor thought Colin Farrell was the reincarnation of Richard Burton. And she had a “thing” for him. I still haven’t found the story where he actually says how they met. All the headlines say he reveals how they met. But don’t say. So, you know, who knows. Maybe in between the tweeting on Twitter she was on Craigslist.  I can’t wait for Arnie Klein to start giving interviews. Those will probably start on Monday. Followed by who knows what by whom.

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear Baby…you are assuming an MM tryst with Crawford?   That tale came out of the worst and most unreliably salacious of books on MM. 

        Monroe probably did have some sort of gay-ish relationship with her drama coach Natasha Lytess, and perhaps later with another professional acquaintance.  But neither defined her sexually.   She probably would have been better off as a lesbian. 

        Taylor and Monroe were in Las Vegas for a Sinatra event in 1961.  Monroe–who was having a casual affair with Mr. S.—became rowdy under the influence and Sinatra dismissed her from his presence after the concert.  It was at this event that Norman Mailer asserted that Taylor remarked, “Get  this dyke away from me!” (referring to an intoxicated MM.)   Significantly, of all the tales told about Taylor, this was one of the very few over which she actually sued–and won.  That passage was taken out of subsequent printings of Mailer’s book.  More accurate reporters on that fabled evening (MM and ET at the same table!) tell that Elizabeth was sympathetic to Marilyn’s condition but…”She shouldn’t drink if she can’t handle it.  Now, me—I can handle it!”  And with that she downed a shot.

        But Joan Crawford truly loathed MM, and it was she who commented to friends right after Marilyn’s death, “Well, really—she wasn’t one of us.”
        As for La Liz, nobody’s going to sue.  A fantastical tale of her parents is not what her estate and heirs worry about. 

        A hot bikini shot of ET circa 1976 via Henry Wynberg just popped up on the internet.  That’s the kind of  thing they worry over.
         

      • avatar LandofLove says:

        Mr. Wow, is there one book about Elizabeth Taylor that you can recommend as containing as much truthful info as is possible to know? I’m sure no one knows everything—or at least they haven’t written it—but I’d like to read something that has at least a few grains of truth.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Somehow I suspect her brother is a little more concerned about the story of “Elizabeth the Bastard” than he is a photo of “Elizabeth the Fat.”

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear Baby…

        Elizabeth looks exactly like both her parents.  She got the best of their combined features. 

        That story is as crazy as the ladies room tale.  Her brother doesn’t care at all.  Those who still control her image are concerned about things like surprise photos. She doesn’t look fat at all in the Wynberg shots.  Just…very relaxed.  Like, “Oh, come on Elizabeth—take your top off for this one…” 

        The supposed “nude” of ET that has floated for years is most definitely not her.  Taylor never had a pert bosom.  Magnificent, never pert.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Both her parents were from Kansas. Her brother more or less stayed in Kansas. I suspect from time to time she wanted to go back. But never could. No matter how many times she clicked the ruby slippers. ”Hi, I’m Elizabeth Warner” was Kansas. I suppose in a way for a brief period in Washington she made it back to Kansas. Until the “entourage” got more bored than she did and wanted her to go back to Oz. So they could go back to Oz. 

        She and I had mutual friend. Another of the “child stars.”  Over the weekend  I realized both were “done in” in the end by the “entourages.”  Who become the “star” more than the star. And then “run the show” as they say.

        I think the family probably has had enough. All the schadenfreude aside, which I actually feel a little guilty about at this point, I think I have as well.

        I’m content to just remember her as Elizabeth Warner. The nice, nice lady from Kansas. And that’s who she was. Every once in awhile it was right there on the caller id. ET Warner.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I also think had Mike Todd lived that at some point it would have been “Hi, I’m Elizabeth Todd.”  We might have had Joan Collins as Cleopatra.  And Sybil would be the wife buried in Celigny. 

        The love letters she wrote to Bill Pawley are probaby the most revealing of all the love letters. Including the love letters to and from Burton. 

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        The Taylor/ Pawley romance started on her 17th birthday. She and Sarah had just returned from Europe where Elizabeth (only 16 then) made “The Conspirators” Headlines continued to state that Elizabeth was writing letters every night, to boyfriend, Glenn Davis, who was in Korea. The studio made Taylor/Davis romance started in the summer of 1948. At 16, she needed a boyfriend for her reputation. Glenn was on leave in March 1949, and went to Florida to see Elizabeth. It was an old fashion welcome back from overseas event. Reporters and photos everywhere. Both Glenn and Elizabeth knew their romance was for publicity over. In late March 1949, she and Glenn attended the Academy Awards…and ended their romance. She returned to Florida to see Pawley. Sarah approved as the Pawley’s were very wealthy. The Pawley’s weren’t as approving saying, “She would come over to talk to you with her bosoms practically spilling out of her dress”. But Sarah rushed the romance. It was decided that Elizabeth would make one more film, and then give up film making. Before returning to Hollywood, Sarah announced Pawley’s and Elizabeth’s engagement on June 6, 1949. Elizabeth went to Hollywood, while William stayed in Florida. Elizabeth made “The Big Hangover” (with Van Johnson), and Pawley came to Hollywood once or twice to see her. But the letters are from the summer of 1949. When it was revealed that director, George Stevens wanted her in “A Place in The Sun”, Elizabeth told Pawley that she would make one movie a year and spend the rest of her time with him. He didn’t want that and in September 1949, he came to Hollywood. He and Elizabeth (who, by that time was enamored by Montgomery Clift) ended their relationship. Elizabeth was hardly devastated as she attended Jane Powell’s wedding the following day…and then went on location work with Monty in October 1949. Sarah wasn’t happy with Elizabeth’s love life until she met Hilton in November…and Pawley was soon forgotten. It is said that he came to Elizabeth’s house on the day she was to marry Hilton, but left quickly and furiously. No one knows what that conversation consisted of. Of course, Elizabeth married Nicky Hilton.
        Now Pawley gave the letters away and claims (now) that he loved Elizabeth for 25 years. It was puppy love for Elizabeth. She was 17. He was 28. They barely spent any real time together. Elizabeth has never mentioned this engagement…so that is the importance that she has placed on it. William who? Pawley????

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        The love letters to Bill Pawley are in some ways similar to the love letters to Richard Burton. Who’s to say, really, what was what. Perhaps her not ever discussing it says more than anything she would have said had she discussed it. In the end, her life was very enigmatic.  Earth Mother. And Enigma.

        One of those enigmas was her supposedly refusing to give up her career for Bill Pawley. And then announcing her retirement when she married everyone else. Until she married Richard Burton.  But then she achieved true “stardom” in “The Burtons.”

      • avatar Richard Bassett says:

        I am not aware of any love letters that ELIZABETH wrote to BURTON. In “Furious Love”, his letters to her were the topic of conversation. And his love letters really came from his diaries…which were written decades ago so there is nothing new there. “Furious Love” is primarily about Burton. His letters are basically similar to the way he speaks…in his poetic/verse rhetoric. Nothing new is revealed…except that last love letter (that may or may not have really existed). How revealing can her love letters to Pawley be? She was 17, knew nothing about the world and were typical teen-age jargon swooning over her first love. There may be some historical content in them, but only the most basic information. We already know it all.

      • avatar rick gould says:

        Whatever “collector” bought that supposed nude photo got took. It’s so obviously a pic of Liz as a teen superimposed on the model… when it was supposed to be during her Mike Todd time. And WHY would she hand it over to an assistant after Todd’s death? Absurd.

        And yes, Elizabeth had her father’s amazing eyes and brow… her son Michael actually looks a great deal like her father. 

        Those idiotic stories about ladies room rendezvous are right up there with Lana and Ava picking up a gas station attendant or Paulette Goddard going south at Ciro’s. I never believed the Joan and Marilyn hookup story either. Just tall tales that some people want to believe.

    • avatar rick gould says:

      The Liz Taylor interview on Johnny Carson, which was terrific, just got posted. 
      And ET makes VERY clear what she thinks of tell-all autobiographies…

  14. avatar Tee Zee says:

    Just sayin you might wanna consider a cell phone that can be used as a mobile “hotspot’ for the next time.