Hollywood, California (UP) –
Well, tomorrow is Election Day and I’m going right out on a limb and make a prediction. The Democrats will carry three states. the Republicans will carry three states. The other 42 I can’t be sure of. But that’s the trend if you want to place a bet.
The important thing is that we all get out and vote tomorrow. George and I have our morning all scheduled:
6:00 a.m.: George leaps out of bed and turns on cold shower.
6:02 a.m.: I go in and take it.
6:30 a.m.: Breakfast.
7:00 a.m.: We vote.
Won’t it be restful next week when the political campaigns are over, and we can pick up a newspaper again and just read those quiet, peaceful descriptions of the battles in the Philippines?
Hollywood, California –
Well, so far as I’m concerned, the election is already a success. The official at the polls this morning asked me if I was old enough to vote.
I was so eager to cast my ballot that I told a little white lie and said I was.
George is terribly nervous waiting for the election returns to come in. And when he’s nervous he likes to smoke one cigarette right after another. Today he’s already gone through three cartons… But he didn’t find any cigarettes.
According to early reports, the Solid South is going the same way it has for the last 70 years… it still prefers Boubon.
Hollywood, California –
Well, the election is over and it’s high time we started thinking about who our next President is going to be. I’m in a hurry because Professor Hooton of Harvard says that it is entirely possible that a woman might become President of this country.
Let’s get started, girls, there are only 1,461 shopping days until the next election.
On the other hand, maybe we shouldn’t be too flattered. Professor Hooton is an authority on apes.
Besides, where are we going to find a woman with the brain, ability, personal charm and integrity necessary for the job of Vice President? And after that, where are we going to find a Vice President to run with me?
Hollywood, California –
Well, today George and I leave on a trip to campaign for the Sixth War Loan Drive and I hope we sell a hundred million billion dollars’ worth of bonds. We are going to visit Boston, New York, Cleveland, Philadelphia, and a lot of other towns on our old vaudeville circuit.
Goodness, if audiences throw half as much money at George as they used to throw other things, the financial part of the war is won.
I have to hurry now and repack some of George’s luggage. He’s complaining because I put his long underwear on top. He says he would be embarrassed on the train if he had to lift out the longies to get his shaving things.
Well, so long for now, folks. I’ll let you know how we make out on the road. I’m a trouper again – this time for Uncle Sam.
En route across the country –
Well, here we are going to Boston to start our bond tour. Before we left, we heard a lot of scary stories about how crowded the train would be, but George and I are in a great big drawing room – where seven people have a drawing to see which one gets the berth.
The other six go to the club car to sleep. But it’s very hard to sleep there because it’s full of Republicans reading the “Business Opportunity” ads out loud.
Everyone said we wouldn’t be able to get food on the train. But so far, we haven’t missed a single meal. We just wire ahead to the next town and have a man stick a sandwich through the window.
Heading East on our bond tour, George and I are now passing through the Indian country. It’s amazing how these simple people cling to the quaint customs of the past. Why, some of them are still wearing Dewey-Bricker badges.
But in most ways our Red brothers are becoming thoroughly modernized. They’re working in defense plants and have plenty of money to spend. It’s certainly a strange sight to see the squaws crowding around the incoming trains and trying to buy Pullman blankets from the passengers.
And these young squaws are real bobby-blanketers – they’re mad about Frank Sinatra. In fact, they’ve made him an honorary chief – “Leaning Bull.”
Of course, they like Bing Crosby, too. They call him “The Great White Father.”
George and I have just arrived in Chicago en route to our eastern War Bond appearances. I thought at first that Chicago men had become very fresh. I must have turned around and smiled half a dozen times before I realized it was the wind whistling at me.
We paid a flying visit to the famous Pump Room where I used to gather my inside information during the political conventions. The talk was all about the reelection of Illinois’ handsome Governor Green. That man is to politics what Lana Turner is to sweaters. He has Robert Taylor’s eyes, Alan Ladd’s smile, Cary Grant’s chin and a necktie like my husband’s.
In fact, George is a little upset about my feelings for Governor Green. My goodness, I’ve heard of making husbands green with jealousy, but this is the first time I ever made one jealous with Green.
Well, here we are in historic Boston where, according to some poet, the Lowells speak only to the Cabots. My dear Irish mother was born here but we aren’t exactly Beacon Street society. In our case, the Allens spoke only to the Sullivans – no one else would talk to us.
My husband has been telling me the fascinating history of New England. George is so smart; he knew the history of every state in the union when he was just a boy. Of course, when George was a boy, there weren’t so many states.
We’ve been seeing the historical sights here in Boston. We stood before the Old North Church from whose tower Paul Revere got his signal. We walked up Bunker Hill. And we peeked into the Harvard Club where are preserved the remains of some actual cigarettes.
Robert Lowell was a conscientious objector to WW2:
There were many changes to New England’s culture at this time that are really interesting to note. The secularized-Puritanism that influenced the dominant Yankee Unitarianism was rapidly fading in many key ways. Henry Cabot Lodge Jr., who’d become ambassador to the UN, was far more of a globalist than Henry Cabot Lodge Sr., who’d opposed US membership in the League of Nations, had been. The influence of the city of Boston began to increase a lot to create an enlarged metropolitan area, and this brought about many cultural changes. For example, municipal labor unions had previously been disliked in much of New England since the police strike of 1919, but were becoming acceptable once more in this era. Car dealers such as Andrew Boch were on their way to becoming some of the most influential men in New England. The 128 beltway in Massachusetts was set to become the first high-tech hub in the nation. There were a lot of changes.
George and I are having the most wonderful stay in Boston. They made me honorary mayor so I immediately lowered taxes, raised salaries and declared St. Patrick’s Day a legal holiday for the police force.
That handsome Mayor Tobin – who is Boston’s mayor in my absence – was very complimentary. He said my lawmaking was so progressive it would take years for them to figure out what I had done.
At the Greatest Boston United War Fund rally, I played my Concerto for Index Finger with Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Symphony “Pop” Orchestra. They told me I was going to play before Governor Saltonstall but I guess I was so good I scared the Governor. He didn’t play at all.
I see by the paper that pre-war girdles are back… and not a moment too soon either. The wonderful hospitality and food we enjoyed in Boston are expanding George right out of his old one.
Our radio sponsors gave us a real old-fashioned Irish shindig. Sure, ‘twas a bit of the Ould Sod with the beautiful songs and blarney bringing tears to the eyes of the good Boston folks. As usual, George’s singing was the hit of the party. That man does a song convincingly. All the Irish agreed that when George sang “My Wild Irish Rose” they could actually smell it.
Now George and I are moving on to sell more war bonds. They tell us to expect rain, sleet and fog on this trip. Pity us poor Californians – we came east for a change.
Well, here we are in New York and, my goodness, what a time we had getting hotel accommodations. Why, it’s worse than Washington. But George and I finally got a cozy little single room with hot-and-cold-running strangers.
The lineup of people waiting to brush their teeth in our room alone reads like a “Who’s Who.” We haven’t had time to unpack, as we’ve been introducing ourselves all morning.
Come to think of it, I haven’t seen George in some time, but I know he’s here in the room. We promised to meet over near the bridge lamp at five o’clock for coffee.
George was upset about all this and asked to see the manager. But it turned out the manager was in Albany. He lives there. It’s the only place he could find a room.
Well, the Christmas shopping season is underway here in New York and if I were Gen. MacArthur and the rest of the boys, I’d stay down in the nice, quiet Philippines until this thing blows over.
I never thought I’d be a war correspondent but this morning I witnessed the battle of Macy’s basement. A contingent of Brooklyn women launched a frontal assault on the pantie-girdle counter but found it strongly defended by the Bronx 176th Street Infantry who fought bitterly from behind previously prepared positions.
One sniper from Flatbush managed to pick off two girdles before he was located and brought down. She retreated hastily to the ladies’ room to regroup her left flank, it having been partially exposed.
When the smoke of battle cleared away, it was discovered that one carnation had three floorwalkers blasted out from under it.
More communiqués from your war correspondent on the battle of the New York Christmas shoppers. Today’s action centered around the toy department on the second floor better known as the “Bloody Second.”
It all began when a lone mother on reconnaissance patrol sighted some pre-war electric trains in the toy department. Word quickly spread and the battle was on.
The action was paced by what appeared to be jet-propelled stout ladies who came through the entranceway in short bursts. They were quickly and vigorously engaged by an armored group of mothers using costume jewelry, hat pins, and brass-cornered pocketbooks.
Floorwalkers were rushed in from kitchenware in an attempt to straighten the lines but they lost their trouser creases and were led away to receive their Purple Hearts.
Well, today George and I went to Brooklyn. George’s ancestors came over from there a couple of generations ago and he’s always wanted to see the motherland.
I love Brooklyn, especially the food. We had a rare delicacy known as “ersters,” similar to our own North American oyster.
I was particular anxious to have George show me the famous indoor baseball team they have there. He said the Brooklyn Dodgers aren’t an indoor team. But I distinctly remember reading they spent the season in the cellar.
And speaking of that, I hear that Noël Coward, the famous English playwright, may become a Brooklyn Dodger himself. People say after his recent disparaging remarks about the fighting qualities of the Brooklyn soldiers in the war, he’s going to be dodging Brooklyn for the rest of his life.
Well, our bond tour today takes us to Philadelphia, “The City of Brotherly Love.” Incidentally, Philadelphia boys have knocked off so many Nazis and Japs in this war that Hitler and Tojo would like to sue the city for false advertising.
I’m launching a ship today at one of the great Philadelphia shipyards. That’s a strange custom – breaking a bottle of champagne over the bow of a ship. But it’s lucky the custom started with champagne and not Scotch or we’d have a mighty small Navy.
You might say that newspaper gossip columns got their start here. This is the home of the great Benjamin Franklin who, among other things, was the Walter Winchell of his day. Mr. Franklin, as you know, wore square spectacles. My goodness, they must have had square keyholes in those days.
Well, I’ve been taking a stroll about the beautiful city of Philadelphia and looking at such famous historical institutions as Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross and Connie Mack.
Congress used to meet here in the old days and I don’t blame them. They came to Philadelphia for the traditional good cooking and to enjoy the sports. I think it was about that time that Philadelphia won the pennant.
I saw a picture of one of those early Congresses and what strange costumes they wore! Believe me, unusual hats were being worn in Congress long before Clare Boothe Luce came along.
Some of the nation’s first families have their roots in Philadelphia and if you ask me, they’re ready to trade in the roots for a few tobacco leaves. The cigarette shortage is really bad here. Nightclub patrons who used to cry when the orchestra played “Danny Boy” or “My Old Kentucky Home” now burst into tears when they hear “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes.”
Well, the eastern portion of our War Bond tour is over and we head back to California tomorrow. I’m a bit disappointed not to have seen any snow, but New York is so crowded this season they just couldn’t find room for it.
However, the hotel people have arranged a white Christmas for us. They promised to mail our laundry home before the 25th.
We’re a little nervous about the trip home. The railroads are doing a wonderful war job but there’s no experience like being wedged into a railroad coach for 3,000 miles. Maybe travel used to broaden one, but now it’s just the opposite.
No matter who gets on the train in New York they get off in California looking like Sinatra.
So, Susanna, I’m off to California, but it isn’t with a banjo on my knee. It’s George. We got the last seat available.
Well, there seems to be a sudden trend toward using good-looking men in politics and if you ask me, it’s a healthy sign. Take Junior Stettinius, our new Secretary of State: He’s ruggedly handsome.
Governor-elect Tobin of Massachusetts is suavely handsome, Governor Green of Illinois is boyishly handsome, and Mayor La Guardia of New York wears large, handsome hats.
Washington society ladies aren’t exactly members of the bobbysock set, but you should have heard them sigh when wavy-haired Paul McNutt whispered “All or nothing at all” regarding his control of manpower. I can just see him now in a double-breasted blue suit competing with Walter Pigeon for Greer Garson’s affections.
Goodness, with all the good-looking devils going into politics, the newsreels have more dimples than the main feature.
Well, last night, we stayed over in Chicago getting our reservations straightened out. I was particularly impressed with Chicago’s share-the-taxi plan. Of course, it’s nice for girls, as we usually sit on the lap on some handsome office. In fact, today, I received one of the fastest promotions in the history of the U.S. Navy. While turning a corner on State Street, I went from an ensign to an admiral in about two seconds.
During our stay, I ran into a Republican delegate who has been trying to get home to Maine since the convention. As he had sworn not to shave if Dewey lost, he now had bleached his beard and was working as a Santa Claus at a department store.
It was fascinating to watch him bounce the little boys on his knee and ask if they wanted to be President. Those who answered “yes” were immediately referred to the Republican National Committee as possible future candidates.