The Blanket with a Brain

“General Electric Sleep Guard: The blanket with a brain!
This beautiful General Electric blanket has a control that’s visibly different. It’s the ‘brain’ of General Electric’s patented Sleep-GuardⓇ design. It assures you of even heat over every inch– no lumpy thermostats or cold spots. It maintains the temperature you set, prevents overheating. You sleep in utmost comfort.

General Electric now gives you eleven fabulous colors to choose from… every size to King-size… plain or custom-tailored corners… single or dual controls. In wash-easy rayon and cotton.

And, you’ll be surprised at the new low prices of General Electric automatic blankets. Your dealer has one now to suit your budget.”

LIFE magazine, November 21, 1960.


Stanley Kubrick’s Letter to Canon Collins

This letter seems funny until you read Canon Collins’ Wikipedia entry. Not a good look, Stanley. Then again, there was no Wikipedia when Kubrick dictated this letter, and he seemed pretty focused on his own work (like having every doorway in London photographed). I did enjoy the acerbic use of quotes around ‘Sunday Pictorial.’ 

March 23, 1961
Canon, John Collins
Chairman, Christian Action
2 Amen Court
London, R.C.

Dear Canon Collins,

Regarding your letters of the 1st and 15th of March, I appreciate your concern about the making of ‘LOLITA’ into a film, because of the sensational publicity which has been attached to the novel. Knowing the sincerity of your intentions, I can only register a certain degree of surprise at your willingness to pre-judge a motion picture (which, by the way, has already been filmed) before you see it. The air of sensationalism which has surrounded ‘LOLITA’ from the beginning has been completely beyond our control, and we have done everything possible to avoid it and to detach ourselves from its implications. Wouldn’t you say that it gives some cause for thought on your part, when you consider the calibre and reputations of the people involved in the picture, notably James Mason, Peter Sellers and Shelly Winters. I hesitate to add (but your letter enforces me to), that a quick look at the films I have made in the past, might also imply a certain dedication to film making, rather than to the exploitation of ‘unwholesome’ subjects. I must say, that I do not think that you will find the motion picture in any way deleterious to the morals of any segment of society.

By the way, the photographs you referred to in the ‘Sunday Pictorial’ were stolen from the laboratory and mis-captioned, and, as a result, gave a completely distorted impression.

Very truly yours,
Stanley Kubrick,
Director, ‘LOLITA'”

Donald Trump Dates Kim Richards

Among the many strings in the bow of businessman, author, and reality starcum president Donald J. Trump is that he can claim the acquaintance of fifteen cast-members of the heroic poem of our age. During the intermediary period between Trump’s first and second wives he dated Kim Richards, a solid member of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills seasons 1 through 5 (the Cain to her sister Kyle’s Abel).  The story of their courtship in Jerry Oppenheimer’s House of Hilton has echoes of Kim’s Season 1 set-up with Martin Genis, (who was later a bystander to her explosive limousine row with Kyle and identified in a title as “Kim’s Onetime Date,” my new private nickname for 45.).

“After the Davis’ divorced, big and little Katy set up Kim with other big shots with money… Kathy Hilton sought out wealthy men who ran in her Manhattan social circles. One was a Revlon cosmetics honcho. Another was Donald Trump, who once viciously declared that Kathy’s father-in-law Barron Hilton was ‘a member of the lucky sperm club’– a snarky dig that Conrad, not Barron, started the Hilton fortune. (But in March 2006, when Trump’s model wife Melania gave birth to a boy, The Donald named him William Barron in honor of the Hilton bossman). Rick and Kathy socialized with Trump, and Kathy figured he and Kim might be a match made in heaven.

‘Kathy couldn’t run around anymore because she was married, so she lived vicariously through Kim, just like big Kathy lived vicariously through little Kathy, observes Sylvia Richards. ‘Kim told me that Kathy kept setting her up with Trump, and Trump would call–I was there when he telephoned–and wanted her to come to New York. He would give her the money and she would go. But I don’t think Kim was really too keen on him.'”

House of Hilton: From Conrad to Paris: A Drama of Wealth, Power, and Privilege, Jerry Oppenheimer, Crown Publishers, 2006.