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Decoder Ring: The “Sex” Scandal That Made Mae West

2022-08-16

In the early 1930s, Mae West’s dirty talk and hip swiveling walk made her one of the biggest movie stars in America. But before West hit the big-screen, she was prosecuted for staging not one, but two scandalous plays. In this episode, we look at how West honed her persona when she was under the bright lights of Broadway and the flashbulbs of the tabloids — and briefly behind bars. More than a century later, her career arc offers a blueprint on how to survive a scandal…and maybe even come out ahead.

This episode relied heavily on a lot of archival material and innumerable books: When I’m Bad, I’m Better: Mae West, Sex and American Entertainment by Marybeth Hamilton; When Brooklyn was Queer by Hugh Ryan; Lillian Schlissel’s introduction to Three Plays by Mae West,  Mae West: a biography by George Eells and Stanley Musgrove; Mae West: An Icon in Black and White by Jill Watts;  Becoming May West by Emily Wortis Leider; Gay New York by George Chauncey;  Mae West, She Who Laughs Last, by June Sochen: Goodness Has Nothing to Do with It by Mae West; and Linda Ann Losciavo’s play “Courting Mae West” and her blog, which you can find at Maewest.blogspot.com

This episode of Decoder Ring was written by Willa Paskin. It was produced by Willa Paskin and Katie Shepherd. Derek John is Sr. Supervising Producer of Narrative Podcasts. Merritt Jacob is our Technical Director. Thank you to Benjamin Frisch for this topic. 

If you have any cultural mysteries you want us to decode, email us at DecoderRing@slate.com

If you love the show and want to support us, consider joining Slate Plus. With Slate Plus you get ad-free podcasts, bonus episodes, and total access to all of Slate’s journalism.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
The. On February, ninth nineteen, twenty seven, a broadway show called sex played its We hundred and thirty ninth performance sex was a provocative comedy about institution that had scandalised its way into becoming a hit- it was stuffed with salacious dancing. Adults situations and dialogue, I've got something for you. Wait until you see this come on. Let's see it Forget it better, be good, that's good all right, but you ve gotta, be very careful not to bend.
the show, was one of the longest running of the broadway season and a breakthrough for its star writer and producer Mae west. You gotta get a grip on yourself, there's a chairs of rising to the top in every profession. west within her mid thirties and had been performing for over two decades, but sex finally made her the talk of the town and then on that matter, in february and money, into. This shows run the cops destiny. Eleven officers crashed and after the final corn and escorted west, and about twenty other cast members out of the either through a cloud of her reds and into ten just hailed. Taxicabs there into a health kitchen police station and then to night court in greenwich village the charge is corrupting the morals of youth.
West spent the night in jail right next to the, which was which was with zoo, with onlookers, journalists and photographers trying to get a glimpse of the actress would make front pages across the city for months as sex went on trial, during the resulting brouhaha west would be asked what she saw. The scandal would do to her career. I expect this to the making of me she was right, but it was It is inevitable that she makes it sound. in the early, in authorities may was dirty talk. hips willing, walk her quick wit and slow delivery her sexual brava ato and horny singers, her boldness. Our camp made her one of them biggest movie stars in america, but before worst hit the big screen
who is in the bright light, the broadway and the flash bob's of the tabloids. Would you was prosecuted staging, not one, but two scandalous plays in this episode with the help of play scripts port documents and Newspaper clippings, we're going to look at this period is the one which west honed that persona that would make her last and that all these years later, still offers a kind of blueprint. How to survive a scandal and maybe even come out ahead. day on Dakota ring. How didn't Mae west become herself. It's time to reboot your credit card with apple card apple card gives you up to three percent,
unlimited daily cash back on everything you by its real cash, never expires or loses value. You to grab a morning coffee or pay back a friend plus there isn't a single fee apply now in the wall. It up on iphone and start using it right away, subject to credit approval, deal Cash is available via an apple cash card or as a statement, credit see, apple card, customer agreement for terms and conditions cash card is issued by green dot bank member f d. I c variable Pr range from thirteen point to four percent to twenty four point: twenty four percent based on credit worthiness rates as of august first, two thousand twenty two Mae west was born in eighteen. Ninety three: I believe that everyone, unlike many as a
in thirty years later she's, one of those celebrities. You know, even if you don't know that you do because she's just a part of the cultural farmer. In the nineteen thirties was in your face about how the style and incredible portability, made her an icon. She showed cole, porter songs and disney cartoons and became a favourite of drag queens. Salvador Dolly made a couch based on her lips, but as the years have passed by she's stayed current and evergreen cultural reference who pops up as a laugh line and family friendly, sitcoms ovens save his own time. For comfort gag on Saturday night, alive, nova, hugely popular catchphrase. Why don't you come upstairs and see me up there some time as such paul on rube halls drag race when I'm good, I'm good,
when I'm bad. I get a serious venereal disease, even as she's still reaching people through her movies. I discovered Mae west when I was about twelve years old, minerva. Jane is a writer, entertainer and comedian based in Boise, who is the voice of Mae west. In this episode and from a small town called emmett, idaho and I really was never in the closet. about anything about who I was, and so I didn't have a lot of friends and I took two old movies as respite from that. He was, unlike any other movie star. I'd ever seen. She just was larger than life. It was a a kind of warmth that came through, but it wasn't. It wasn't a put on kind of warmth. It wasn't like a two she'll want I'm good, I'm very good, but when
bad I'm better. I felt like watching her was watching someone who was being themselves but being herself took Mae west years of work west was born in working class. Immigrant throng brooklyn back before there were car or radios, let alone movies. Her father had been a bare knuckles street fighter for more jobs, teal, absolutely beloved german immigrant mother had been a one time corset model they both who gangsters The family moved often and west who started performing around age. Six likely contributing financially She is coming out of what can be legit. Let me describe dozen as an underworld of brooklyn very rough hamilton. The author of went on bad, I'm better mae, west sex and american entertainment and she does come out of a pretty little
oh ran and a vaudeville where you know there was not a very clear boundary between the stage and the street. By the time you a teen west was performing in cheap theatres around the city. When she was seventeen, she went tor in the mid west as part of a double act. West was already sexually active. Her lasciviousness is not some put on she liked sex and she had it, but she was so young enough that she could be made to feel ashamed of this, and so she was pressed, heard into marrying her seen partner, it will be the first and last time she bowed to sexual propriety. Pretending marriages, hadn't happened was struck out on our own, trying to break into the family friendly vaudeville, big time with a comedic song and dance act, but with limited six ass, just everything about the way she carried herself was so redolent of the world of these.
And of low ran variety theatres in our act, worst, would do dances like the kitchen, the shimmy, an african inflected shoulder and bus shivering move that came out of black night clubs. Sometimes she'd perform it sitting down just her chest shaking and then at the bits, climax, whoops, her shoulder throb. What accidentally fall down she finished up with the sign off. It's not working Oh it's how you do it throughout the nineteen tens, her career, a kind of two step, two steps forward and then two steps back. Breaks in vaudeville and on broadway would be followed by a return to less esteemed venues She be annabel with houdini, in dog went over audiences, offend critics, alert with swift and turn down a stage presidency in every way, just as we might have read out a vaudeville into relief
in nineteen. Twenty three as vaudeville was losing ground to a new kind of entertainment. The movies west career of bully hit the skids a three year: black hole on her resume where Only billings it may have been in some really tawdry shows. Fortunately, tawdry was roaring in prohibition comes in a nineteen. Twenty makes all drinking and all bars, illegal, he'll, ryan is the author of the women's house of detention and when brooklyn was queer, suddenly nightlife becomes a huge thing, much of it mafia connected, and it also becomes a more a small d democratic thing and makes more space for more different kinds of nightlife. It also starts to make it hot and happening and exotic to go to places that are a little bit wilder if you're already going to a place,
it's illegal. Why not go to the place? It's exciting wait. New yorkers began so called slumming flooding into since they didn't used to go including mob run. Speakeasies, honky, hunky, tungsten, jazz clubs in harlem and queer bars and drag balls down in greenwich village. respectable young women started wearing lipstick. I liners knockings and stopped wearing girdles flapper styles that previously been associated with sex workers. It is really difficult to tell if you go to speak easy. You know who are the poor Children, who are the society debutantes? They look the same. They dressed the saying they put the same things on their faces. They danced the same and mae west clock This new career might have been at a low point, but she was right in the middle of the roaring twenties. She was dating investors and boxers and friends with nightclub owners and m sees she was up and hard I'm in down in greenwich village. Her mother was run.
A road house with a bootlegger. Only madden who, after getting out of sing sing, ran the cotton club. She had a front row seat to new york, changing mores which had even reached broadway were too hit shows about prostituted, popped up subjects and performance styles. That west was seeped but they had been beyond the pale were becoming more acceptable and west was smart and savvy enough to seize the moment. I became convinced but the great american public was somewhat aware of the existence of a natural state of affairs called neatly sex. So I wrote a play. It Mae west had a play, writing philosophy. It was this people weren't dirt and plays so I given
dirt and if you bought a ticket to see sex which open in April of nineteen twenty six dirt is exactly what you are paying for in the play. Wes played a doubt. at the heels yet universally desired. Prostitute name margie Lamont, who was streamline matter of fact about everything, as she is here when another woman asked her to lay off a john name sailor damn sailor, damn from kansas. Let me check my book. Oh sailor, dan from kansas, flat feet, asthma check came back, oh baby I'll make you a present of that. Boyd he's your
Wasn't just the dialogue that was provocative limit, an mmo shadow is a playwright and poet who runs a Mae west blog and has written two plays about west people went to see six three and four times, because ne was always going further. She was always sticking in a new dirty job but innuendo showing her naval sex. It made, for a while the night out it was like go. slumming but onboard the way the show a job, bad sultry, dance, genuine street sleigh revealing and shabby costumes, double tartarus. So a matter of fact they have been described as single and, of course, sacks Including a scene in which west character margie straddles john on a kitchen chair, she's, making contact with him no she's she's grinding against him. This was something that never never. Never
when this far the show was so tawdry. They had a plan for dealing with visits from the authorities when they had a plan on stage till two versions and they would have looked doubts in back of the theatre to see who was there. The dirty script in vaudeville fashion was called the horse scrapped. The Leaned script was called the parlor scrapped and it was unnecessary subterfuge because of american obscenity laws and a near constant background pressure to clean up broadway. If cops look to be in the crowd, the cast would put on the tamer version of the show critics to or often shown, the parlor script, but even it was to me, for them. Mary Beth Hamilton, it's absolutely excoriated with reviews that kind of go beyond a normal bad review and offensive clay monstrosity plucked from garbage can get them to
it was also described as having a dark brown quality and west was referred to as the babe ruth of stage prosody is. This is now the glamorous Mae west were used to she's slovenly. Really, a couple of them suggest that actually kind of getting off on her performance, but of critics were aghast audiences were not society folk city officials police officers, young women, started flocking to sex. Exactly because it was so inappropriate, so naughty so bad when they were not coming for particularly was the story, but the showed I have one the play: it was written by west under the name, Jane mast with a ghost writer adeline light spock and at its most bare bones, it's as much about class as it is about
acts. The through line involves a society dame who, in the first act out to do a little slumming herself, gets drugged by marges pimp and his left for dead. Margie revives her only for the woman to try to sell margie out to the cops in the second act set in trinidad. Where margie has followed the british fleet, a young rich kid falls for her when he takes her home to connecticut. What do you know that society dame turns out to be his mother? Who was horrified margie? Let's have it say you ve gotta, know I've put me a self on a pedestal. Above me, the thing
as I have done. I had to do for a living and I'll bet without this beautiful home without money and without any restrictions, you'd be worse than I have ever been. If you we sex, you realize it's very hungry clay and that's the real Mae west, the angry mae west, the humor, comes afterwards. The Mae west of sex was coming off two decades of having her face pressed to the glass of success years of people telling her. She was too vulgar to unrefined too much. She was funny she was brash, she would go there, but you have also pissed off, and that means she didn't really sound like Mae west, yet our own sense of who she is isn't he was is so strong. Embedded that I think, even if you read the script of sex, you read it with an Mae west influx
and you know that sort of ironic sort of campy inflection, I I think that's how she spoke. I don't get that impression at all that the lines that really lend themselves to that west future movie, star persona is so potent it almost makes for a time traveller its d to imagine just about any line delivered with her trade mark campi gusto like her kiss off to the society. Dame the only difference between us is that you could afford to give way would even the lines that lend themselves to that might have sounded different, they might have been more raw angrier works in progress. The only difference between us is that you could afford to give it up a west was on her way, but you were-
may west. Yet her next play would get her closer. It's time to reboot your Credit card with apple card apple card is designed to help you pay less interest. Unlike other cards, it estimates how much interest you'll oh and suggests moves to help you pay off your balance faster. also. You can keep more of your money ply now in the wall it up on iphone and start using it right away, subject to credit approval interests asked him, on the payment. We are illustrative only and may not fully reflect actual interest charges on your account. Estimates are based on your posted account. at the time of the estimate and do not include pending transactions or any other purchases you may make before the end of the billing period. Did you know that thread account is a myth. It doesn't matter how many threads your sheets have is not the best threads possible.
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Dude on broadway to rave reviews, a study of a young woman, struggling helplessly in the toils of an abnormal erotic Mae west had just scored a big hit by crossing the line upon seeing the success of the captive. She thought she might do it again this time with homosexuality, male and female impersonators, as they were then known, had been a popular vaudeville stable for years and some of its biggest stars but west was look to bring something a little more underground, uptown and in fact she cast much of her new show out of a greenwich village, drag cabaret as linda ambush ivo told me. West, have been tipped off about the place by the box or jack dempsey who she dated. It was on west ninth street, a block from the court house in jail where westwood later spend the night by day it was just an italian restaurant one night
We went with her manager scrawled a casting call on a waiter's pad and the next evening fifty queer people showed up for auditions at the theater where sex was playing. She cast much of this So out of this group and started hold, highly improvisational rehearsals late at night after she had finished appearing in sex a lot of the dialogue that came out of these improvisations ended up in the play. West wrote but did not appear in it's called the drag. nominally a tragic melodrama about a closeted married man, his miserable wife and his distraught acts lover. That is, pricing. We respectful of gay love but the serious It was also a kind of trojan horse, a framework that can The oldest shows real drop, the fun and scandalous south scenes in which, We are supporting characters, vamp and gossip and heavy slang and joke about rough and dalliances, with cops muse
go interlude in which a jazz ban perform songs like the woman. stole my gown and the climax a twenty minute dry performance almost exactly like what was going on down town, the show also featured the first adoration of west, most famous I'm it might have come from one of the actors or thought to show the influence of the famous female impersonator bert the boy who had turned the innocuous. You must come over into a suggestive catchphrase in the drag. The line in question is delivered by a queer character Twenty so glad to have you made me come on some time and I'll beg you a pan of biscuits. Wasn t team. Nothing, if not a bold and provocative bunch, their production company was
called thou morals producing company they had named as show sacks and would advertise it lady. This warning, if you cannot stand excitement see your doktor before visiting Mae west in sex, but if they thought the drag was gonna go over like sex. They were radically under estimating homophobia. The dragon Not only about gave themes and topics, it feeds a gay man playing gay men at a time when new york state had just criminalized. miss actuality and queer people could not even be part of the actors union. As the drag began play out of town in connecticut, and then new jersey, audiences seemed as the lady demand retained as west thought they would be, but organizations already aghast at broadway's wobbly morality ratcheted up the pressure on city hall. Meanwhile broad
producers and theatre owners in a panic. The drag would bring down all of broadway pushed to stop it too. On february, ninth nineteen. Twenty seven variety reported there, in a special showing of the drag in manhattan for city officials and doctors. It was hoped, might endorsed the play for the educational value that very night desperate to stop the drag from opening in the city The law trained its eye on the only Mae west show playing in its jurisdiction ten months into its run. Sex finally ran a foul of the law and suited to other players. linda ambush, although no city hall had say. I really want to arrest Mae west, but we make it look like we're just coming down. I mae west, so let's grab three plays on the site
the trial of Mae west and her co defendants began eight march of nineteen twenty seven about six weeks after the initial arrests, In the interim, the drag had been successfully cap from opening in the city and sex had eventually close to. but with a large downtown courthouse as her stage west was still pouring in a new show one that would prove to be good feeder, wildly hype by the press with two leading characters of its own. The first was the prosecutor assistant district attorney james g wallace. Six, was not intended to paint a moral lesson. It was intended to sell vileness. The second was the defence lawyer. There were actually four of them, some with underworld ties, but for the sake of clarity, we ve condense them into one. We are going to call for
when people who saw our play weather Seven hundred police maneuver saw sex in the eleven months it ran for just about a week. The two sides faced off in a pact courthouse as west who had been instructed not testify looked on while demurely dressed in close hats, fur coats and black silk also in attendance at a hanging on every word or score. as a newspaper, a man of filing dispatches about the proceedings to papers, the city and the country dispatches that we're all. This dialogue comes from I object to my child, actually going to see it. It should oh, that even degraded women have a spark of decency which, if appealed to they rescue them from their way of life. The trial had comedy like during the testimony of the prosecution star wit
ass police sergeant, Patrick canal had seen the ribald version of sex three times while taking notes in the dark. After talking the jury I do every salacious moment in the play. He was chiefly cross examined by the defence. Miss west moved her naval down and from right to left, You actually see her naval. No, but I I saw something in her middle that move from east to west. Would you demonstrate and then there was more a comedy intention as one that defends argued, that for all of sex is tat, remote moments. It conveyed a larger moral lesson, just like hamlet, a tale of two cities and the bible, selections of which were right, to the jury. I read to you from solomon, seven versus four to seven the district attorney disagreed with this comparison and instead
here the show to a brothel. We have cleaned up the red light district of new york it's pretty gleaned down now, but we got the red it's on a stage. The climax was samuel. Any asleep thrilling and screwball initial. the jury returned with a verdict in west and the co defendants favour, but then the you made a last minute intervention issuing explicit instructions. The plate was not to be considered as a whole, but on a line by line basis. It is no defence that the play me I've taught a moral lesson. Because no one can commit an illegal act to accomplish a good one, thou shalt do evil that good may come at this point a produced. Began. Counting the rosary, a cast member began to cry and the lawyer, almost got into a fistfight you're a cheap
again, insolent dog, ok, you're! A perversion come outside and I'll take carry the verdict, and soon after they worked and producers get ten days. Nineteen are free west, her to call producers were ordered to pay a five hundred dollar fine and sentenced to ten days in prison with though the trial was over. The frenzy had only be gone west to admit, sideline because she wasn't testifying, took centre stage again. You showed up send, did a limo vowing, resilience you got gotta fight in this world, you gotta fight to get there and fight to stay they're. On welfare island she dusted books dined with the warden and complained about the scratch. You will stockings, as the press breathlessly covered at all tax are shine jail.
Upon leaving the island two days early. She insisted the experience had bothered her not at all. I was surprised. I expected it to be a great deal worse. I got enough material for two or three plays. Oh, I got planning she's not to tell sitting whore you crushed me, Linda Emma shovel keeper feisty basing place, don't tell people. This was the Past experience of my life, no that wasn't me made is always going to tell you. You know what you think you hurt me. You help. I thank you Belinda an has a picture from a newspaper archive the tells a slightly different story. Mae west. Going through a revolving door in jail and she's crying hmm.
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apply now in the wall, it up on iphone and start using it right away, subject to credit approval deal cash is available via an apple cash card or, as a statement, credit see, apple card, customer agreement for terms and conditions cash card is issued by green dot bank member f d. I c variable, cpr is range from thirteen point. Two four percent to twenty four point: twenty four per cent based on creditworthiness rates as of august first, two thousand and twenty two, the legend of Mae west, goes that after she went to jail for ass. She was on her way, I mean, what's a better origin story for a woman who styled herself as a goddess of sex than they ve gone famous for sacks the play, but the future as a way of making the hast look inevitable and in the immediate aftermath of sex it wasn't exactly clear how we should proceed now that she was infamous
is Alec. Audiences were lining up to see just anything. She did the next place euro a kind of sex, retread flopped playing. just over a dozen and a half shows, but west was nothing if not indefatigable, and so she kept working writing Who plays that opened on broadway in nineteen twenty eight and It was played the titular lil. Another prostitutes who like sexes, Margie Lamont, is st smart, but good hearted sex leave voracious and adored by all men on. On unpunished and startlingly blunt, but like margie lil is no low class lucy she's
If the diamond festooned cartoonishly desirable. Madam, have an eighteen nineties, pleasure house guy what time I'll go run at the time. I'm a one gal I like them gone are the contemporary dresses west war, insects that did nothing for her and in are the period glamour puss costumes, but it wasn't just the costumes that had changed Mary Beth Hamilton the real differences, her delivery. Every line was laced with innuendo. Every word was laced with a sense that there was a double meaning and this difference might spring from the other play west was working on the pleasure man an overhaul of the rag for the pleasure man west removed the drags whole framing story about gay man and his wife and his former lover, and instead move the action by
I and the scenes of a vaudeville show, but the draft. ball remained, as did the numerous queer characters and actors who west was working with collaborating with hanging out with and directing as she also developed diamond, the lille, she's learning Then let me that the parallels are two notable whether she knew she was doing it or not, she's imbibing, something of a camp style west, had been agreed since two and marinating in camp for years, but maybe we fully embrace, did now, because now, is when she needed it needed a way to be herself and make fun of herself await a wink and to act a way to send up what she otherwise couldn't live down her notoriety by the time she's in diamond lil she's, we know she's not just
the west, the actress cheese, Mae west, the convicted sex offender who went to prison and was on the front pages, the tabloids in diamond lil. She doesn't shy away from any of this. She uses it to her advantage. It's full of double and hundreds not just about sex but about jail. The audience will cackle when little was threatened with time and the clink and there's a punch line where she tells a girl pick pocketing watches. I dont want nothing to do with tat, so I think there's that sort of that awareness of kind of being includes with the audience so that everything about the play, has a kind of ironic detachment and double meaning. with diamond lil west, embraced the drag of her celebrity, finally looked moved and sounded Like the Mae west, we remember a slow moving fast woman with Lou, Some morals and height dresses, who doesn't miss it
rick, even as she's turning them and though way over. The top still has everything under control. Lil was the character west had been trying to find. years and having found her she thickly, never stopped playing her onstage or off lil even gets the most famous mae. West line of all I always did like a man, the uniform, let one the two grand us problems, Sue me, Mary evenin, This new Mae west ironic distance cos not angry ringing. Everybody along. She goes over like gangbusters Diamond lil the play also features vaccines, provocative dancing in a whole sub lot about sex trafficking, but it was a. with audiences and credit. Is I've got actress with this? the widespread popularity probably help
when she was arrested again this time for the pleasure man. Two years later. This case also, and to trial. It was even crazier than the first one, It ended with a hungary and then a dismissal, the cost west a fortune by then the great depression was on audiences were flocking to the movies which were cheap and the steward. Those needed material and so as sceptical as some more of this scandalous Mae west. She was brought to hollywood her, supporting role was in the movie night after night, for which he wrote all of her lines and in the words of one of her co stars stole everything, but I can certainly could not have nothing to do with a during the next year in nineteen. Thirty. Three, when we was forty years old, but pretending she was younger. She starred in
She done him wrong. A sixty six minute adaptation of diamond lil, the coastguard cary grant who west does covered haven't. You ever met a man who can make you happy share times. It was a huge hit for paramount nominated for an academy award and it made west a movie star and even after everything that had happened to her. That still. The only reason most of us know who she is. wes history with the authorities and her time in jail, always hovered. In the background of her fame mentioned in just about every article about her and sometimes her dialogue to. Are you trying to show contempt for this court low? Do my best to hunt for the rest of her life. She never stopped being asked about sex. Here's dick have a doing it in nineteen. Seventy six fifty years
After the play had opened. You once did a play with a very simple title you know the one I mean sex, that's the worst, There was a loud so simple by the time of that interview, west had long since settled into being an even higher camp version of herself. Her movie Your head in some ways been brief. After to hit films, the authorities came for her again this time in the form of the movies haze, co which neutered and neutralize west films- and they had all but petered out by the end of the nineteenth thirty's, but if west movie career was truncated, her influence has not been by the nineteen fifty's. as censorship began, loosening its hold. Other actors began following in her suggestive footprints and they haven't stop since it's not just on screen sex
that, oh something to west, it's all the celebrities, whether they know it or not, have made like Mae west and down a scandal by owning it. It's not just celebrities never jane learned about west sex trial as tween, which was watching and reading everything she could about last. And that was an important lesson for me, not because she got trouble with the law, but because it didn't matter what other people thought. If she had a bad reputation, she was going to make the most of it. That was where it really clicked, because I you know being out very young being very feminine. And you know I started wearing make up and growing my hair out. When I was thirteen you know I
new. I was going to have a reputation, just by being, I decided it was through. May was incredible story that you know it was like Hey I'm going to be damned if I do damned, if I don't so, I'm going to do it. Mae west died in nineteen, eighty she's probably still not respected as a trailblazing, no f giving right or an actress of the nineteen twenties and thirties oughta be, but she is still with us, I'll. Never forget you, no one other than she even has a quote about dying oh really, living and find on novelty, posters and t shirts and coffee mugs. Maybe that means it's a little bit corny, especially if you don't know who said it and the life that she lived, but it still one of my favorite of hers,
saying something you really know it. It goes like this. You only live once, but if you do it right once is enough the come on. Let's make pulling. it's like a vine, my dad music trick along garden spot by we. I male, where there's no way This is dakota ring I will pass. Can you can find me on?
winter at will pass skin, and if you have any cultural mysteries, you want us to decode. You can email asset, dakota, rain, exley, dot com. This podcast was produced by well a passage in dakota, is produced by well up haskins, including shepherd Derek John c. supervising producer of narrative podcast merit jacob is our technical director thing two benjamin fresh for this topic and getting this project going there. Also two Emily word is lighter breton Tyner, Brian, Barbara Cohen, strainer, craig lou teen of our an aerial door lester at the schubert archive. Also. Thank you. Our voice actors, Minerva, Jane david dabbling, her and daring proof all party, this episode Live heavily on a lot of archival material and innumerable books, we're gonna, linked them on our show. Page What I want to shout out some of the ones that have already been mentioned in this episode, the ink
lillian lily introduction to three plays by Mae west mae west, a biography by george ills and stanley musgrove Mae west and in black and white by jill watts coming mae west by Emily worries, lighter gay new york by george chauncey Mae west. She who last last by june sojourn goodness, has nothing to do with it, by mae, west and linda ambush I've us play hoarding Mae west and her blog would you can find at Mae west dot blog spot dot com, you also heard part of a few mae west songs, including I'm no angel, and I like a guy. What takes his time like if you haven't yet please subscribe, In rate our feet and apple pod, or were ever you get your podcast even better. Tell your friends if you're a fan, The show I'd love for you to sign up for a slate plus slate plus members get too
in the decoder ring without any ads, and they get to hear a special behind the scenes. Episode with me at the end of the season, which means you'll, be able to hear that episode next week. There's the port is also crucial to our work. If you sign up now, you can, get the first three months of your membership for only fifteen dollars. So please go to sleep dot, com, slash decoder plus to join slate plus today. That's it for this run about those we back with two more in early october and then a whole bunch more starting in november. Until then be well, lot on. Man come on like this kind, and I get my lab in the
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Transcript generated on 2022-08-20.