how to behave properly, circa 1921.

darlings

on our drive East last night, we pulled up to the bumper of the car in front at the traffic lights on Hollywood at Western, looked left and saw this Beauteous Building, grabbed the camera (tis never far away and yes, we were stationary) and then scribbled a note on the writing tablet that is near to hand (still stationary – very long lights at Western) and decided to Research it Later.

Hollywood Western Building

this being Later – we just have – and according to our friends-at-wikipedia it is:

The Hollywood & Western Building, also known as The Mayer Building, and formerly known as the “Hollywood Western Building,” is a four-storyArt Deco office building located at 5504 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California. It was designated Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument #336 on January 1, 1988.

Designed by S. Charles Lee, and built by Louis B. Mayer and Irving Thalberg, the building opened on December 8, 1928. The building was the first location of Motion Picture Association of AmericaCentral Casting, the Hays Office, and The Ben Hecht Company.

you’ll recall the Hays Office was the one that had to sit through lots of cinematic treasures of the times and decide which were too naughty to be shown to the General Unsuspecting Public – which, great ironies abound, will tickle the ghosts that roam the halls because this building became something of an empire for – how can we put it – films-with-little-plot and lots-of-nudity in the licentious 70s

– gosh!

*touchpearlsandquickasidetocamera*

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the art deco building reminded us that we had a book-on-loan back at teamgloria mansions from 1921 that we needed to return – so we made a cup of warm milk with a cinnamon stick and started to read…..

fascinating!
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this tome was in the possession of an accomplished gentlemen who was recently moving to another residence, not far away.

a mutual friend had asked teamgloria to “drop by” and “help”.

we were a Tiny Bit Confused at this (as we don’t have a great many skills in the packing-and-moving arena) but we thought it might be more to Keep them Company and so we dropped round, as asked, and kept up a stream of (hopefully amusing) anecdotes and Thoroughly enjoyed popping a few spice jars in easy-to-carry bags.

while we just Happened to be glancing around we *squealed* to see a 1921 book about Etiquette – the spice jars packed, we asked (shyly) if we could look.

“take it!” he said.

“gosh, no,” we said, “but we’d like to borrow it and return it when you’re settled in your new place.”

“agreed,” he said, and went back to wrapping a priceless antique from a far east nation.

we have been So Busy these past few weeks, that we Quite forgot to read the book.

it is wonderful. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

designed to help the perhaps ill-at-ease (new money?) American mix in le beau monde, it is Stuffed with helpful hints and careful Direction. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

this was our favo(u)rite newly minted piece of knowledge.

we’re Dying to be invited to a formal dinner just so we can pop round within a week for a “viste de digestion”.

wouldn’t you?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

it was also Most Helpful for the American Abroad.

(remember this was written in the time in which Mr. Scott Fitzgerald set his own Fiction about Mr. Jay Gatsby – picture the scene, darlings).

when we are next in Germany we shall endeavo(u)r to pop round Before 5 o’clock with a teamgloria visiting card (yes, of course we have those – from our lovely friends at the Great British printing press).OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

the vocab. that the author provides as a guiding Index is also most intriguing:

  1. de trop
  2. demoiselle
  3. en buffet
  4. en deshabille
  5. le beau monde
  6. lettre de cachet

darlings – it could be Preparing young Americans for a world of Deep intrigue and naughtiness!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAso who was the Author?

apparently (we could only find one source to corroborate this so here goes) – Miss. Lillian Eichler was a copywriter in Manhattan who had to create an enticing Advertisement to get rid of a job lot of books nobody wanted.

this was in 1919.

her copy was so successful in obtaining Orders for the books (alas most were returned because the books were less compelling than her advertisement) that she was pressed into Writing a book herself.

voila!

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so what happened to Lillian?

well, according to our friends at amazon, her name became extended so we assumed she Married at some point, a Mr. Watson, and continued to Instruct the new nation on matters of etiquette, more specifically in Letter Writing, inspirational quotations from the greats, an appreciation of the popular Mr. Charles Dickens and, in 1939, a fourth edition came out of her book Wee Moderns (quelle charming title) for younger Americans.

sadly we found no obituary.

we do like to find out what happened to extraordinary gutsy copywriters from the 1920s.

perhaps she came West to Hollywood and wrote “scenarios” (as the French call them) for Mr. Louis B. Mayer and worked out of the Hollywood Western Building, with a view of the Hollywood sign, and ate a grilled cheese with a Coca-Cola for her lunch at the counter downstairs while reading the Times.

Hollywood Western Building

hope so.

don’t you?

are you having a delicious sunday, darlings?

18 comments on “how to behave properly, circa 1921.

  1. Love it all! It’s amazing how a building’s rich, beautiful architectural details stirs an inspiration to go down memory lane and discover the many treausures it gave through the years. Captivating!

  2. Oh my, I do like this. The sports clothes advice is very on trend.

    I myself am very fond of the thank you card, following an evening’s enjoyment.

    And what jolly hoots and japes from sun up to twilight they must have all been having!

    Xx

  3. If I may bring some corrections – for your education – to your book : “lettres de cachet” were indeed sealed but were, in our Royal Times, direct orders from the King and mostly to send someone (who would recieve this letter) in prison without jugement… Not very courtouous or delicious… A sealed letter is “une lettre cachetée”.
    And a Demoiselle was (or is in that matter) not especially “young” as long as she stayed unmarried… but you cannot write “old spinster” dow in a book about Etiquette, can you? ;-)

  4. I do believe you know someone in France who would be willing to invite you to a dinner, albeit one not so formal as to require une viste as a follow up!
    And while a visit is no longer de rigeur, a phone call to say merci absolutely still is for anything formal or special.
    Back from the Luberon tomorrow!
    Hope you are well…
    XO
    H

  5. And she was only 18 when she advised the American world on etiquette! Let us have a post on when you perform your very first visite de digestion? This will require a trip to France, of course.

  6. the book is an amazing “trouvaille” and a fabulous story about a young witty woman. J’ADORE.

    and yes, I had a good sunday! its lowest point was rather funny in an adam-sandler-comedy-kind of way – I was cleaning my harley from, ehem, what the hibernation guests had left (a lot!) – and the best thing was camping BC and afterwards enjoying a fabulous vegan stroganoff that instantly made me feel 11 years old and bouncy and happy. now I’m enjoying a glass of a great red and trying to fight the cold.

    • gosh.

      such a #laviedifferent to us with your harley and vegan food and the vino!

      isn’t it marvel(l)ous whom one meets on the interweb?

      *waving* from #losangeles with a cafe au lait and half a grapefruit light snack.

      hoping the warmer winds arrive in your locale Soon!

      • marvellous indeed.
        it’s going to be hot for a few weeks and then – november until december. well, the weathermen say but what do they know? ;)

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