Alice Huffman comes to New York City from the potato fields of Long Island in 1941 to make her way on the Broadway stage only to discover she has no talent. At least, not for the stage. She meets Juliana, a perpetually on the brink of stardom cabaret singer, who is a sexual risk-taker during a time when being discovered could destroy her career and reputation and maybe even get her killed. Juliana initiates young Alice into these sexual adventures and inadvertently falls in love with her despite her belief that it is impossible for two women to truly be in love with each other.
Cameo appearances are made by Lauren Bacall, Angela Landsbury, Walter Liberace, Spivy (owner of a fifties Lesbian night club), Tallulah Bankhead, Jules Podell (manager of the Copacabana) and Carol Channing, Mary Martin, Ethel Merman, Ruth Gordon, Ethel Waters, Gladys Bentley, Gertrude Lawrence and more coming.
Sometime in the 1950s (I haven’t been able to locate an exact date, but I’d like to. Hint, hint) New York City converted from operated assisted dialing to direct dial. (FYI: Party lines in New York City had been eliminated in the 1930s, although they existed for a long time afterwards in the rest of the country)
Today with everybody scrambling to learn the latest computerized, digitalized something it seems hard to believe that people actually had to be taught to dial a phone. Watch this very cool You Tube video and learn how to dial a telephone.
What I find particularly interesting is the Spanish subtitles. I thought our generation was the first to consider the needs of our Hispanic citizens. How arrogant!
My reading about buttons in the 1940s quite naturally led me to reading about ZIPPERS. Zippers began showing up on women’s clothes sometime during the mid to late forties. BUT the arrival of the zipper did not make writing the love scenes any easier than when my characters’ still had buttons on their clothes.
The dress zippers at that time were not located on the back; they were on the side. You can see an example of this in the 1946 film, Gilda. Look for the scene where Rita Heyworth, in a self-destructive mood, challenges the men in the audience to help her take her dress off. One eager gentleman comes up on stage and immediately goes for her zipper on the side. Of course, Bill Holden stops the eager gentleman before anything can actually get zipped off. I’ve also used as my model for these side zippers an old 1948 Montgomery Ward catalogue. I don’t know when they finally started putting zippers on the back of women’s dresses, but I do know that zippers were still located on the side in women’s pants into the early sixties. The reason for the side zipper? Zippers suggested a woman was too easy to get out of her clothes.