"MAKE SOMEBODY happy today. Mind your own business," said Ann Landers.
I suppose, being in the business I'm in, using such a quote at the top is rather contradictory, although naturally I like to hope I haven't been too big a busybody.
I thought of Landers' quote as the romance began between 22-year-old country music sensational Taylor Swift and 18-year-old Conor Kennedy of the prestigious Kennedy family. The pair looks adorable. They've been caught by paparazzi kissing, swimming (she wore a sweet red two-piece suit that showed just enough). She's taken him to Nashville to meet her family, and has supposedly bought a house near Ethel Kennedy's in Hyannis Port, Mass. They are both extremely attractive.
What gets me are all the Kennedy-haters out there warning Taylor (in print) to "run don't walk" to the nearest exit; that Conor is a Kennedy and Miss Swift will surely end up in some tragic situation, because all Kennedy men are monsters. Given the size of the Kennedy clan, that's quite an overstatement. There are plenty of nice Kennedy men who are not involved in scandals or terrible events such the recent tragic suicide of Conor's mother, Mary, who was on the rocky road to divorcing Conor's father, Robert Kennedy Jr.
If nothing else, young Conor needs some emotional comfort right now, and Miss Swift, with a few years on him, might be providing that, along with a lovely late-summer romance. Miss Swift, who is just about the biggest deal in the music industry right now, has been "linked" to Joe Jonas, Taylor Lautner, John Mayer and Jake Gyllenhaal. Though I certainly don't know the intimacies of these various relationships, they were all with famous young men and heavily publicized. She's young, but she's not straight out of the egg. I think she can handle Conor Kennedy.
The better question might be, given his age and what he's just been through, can he handle her? After all, it is her fame that's lighting the gossip torch. If Conor was dating some unknown, we'd know little or nothing about it.
Let them be, and stop making ugly assumptions about this kid (Conor) because of his family name.
ON Sept. 20 in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Museum (The Max Factor Building) a memorial will be held for the late press rep Dale Olson, one of the good guys, who worked with everybody at one time or another. I do mean (and this is the short list) Mae West, Groucho Marx, Lana Turner, Katharine Hepburn, Henry Fonda, Elizabeth Taylor, Paul Newman, Julie Andrews, Helen Hayes, Sammy Davis Jr., James Earl Jones, Angela Lansbury, Clint Eastwood, Alfred Hitchcock, Sophia Loren, Susan Sarandon, Lynn Redgrave, several presidents and, of course, Rock Hudson. It was Dale who convinced Rock to admit he was suffering from AIDS. (There was controversy later when some said Rock was too out of it to have actually consented to "coming out," but those who knew Dale well insisted he would never have taken such a step without his client's full awareness.)
Now, here's the interesting thing. Dale Olson actually wrote his autobiography, and it is said to be fascinating. Well, how could it not be? When will it be available for us gossip mavens? Who knows. The book languishes without a publisher. The only reason I can think of is that it is not juicy enough, not enough dirt. Like the late John Springer, who also repped a hoard of legends, Dale didn't tell tales out of school. John never wrote an autobiography and in his rare interviews, he was always laudatory, even of his most flamboyant, difficult clients -- Marilyn Monroe, Judy Garland and the Burtons at their excessive peak.
Still, even if Dale has nothing but good to say, it's Hollywood history and deserves to be put out there.
P. S. on autobiographies. Debbie Reynolds is re-doing her life story, and those in the know say that she will be even more forthcoming than she was originally about the most infamous time of her life -- when Eddie Fisher left her for Elizabeth Taylor. (A scandal eclipsed only when Taylor took Fisher's scalp from her belt, flung it in his face and went on her tumultuous way with Richard Burton.) Fisher and Taylor are now dead, so we can expect a wee bit more candor. Debbie knew Elizabeth from their earliest days at MGM, and was a bridesmaid at Taylor's first wedding to Nicky Hilton -- not to mention acting as maid of honor at Taylor's third wedding to Mike Todd. There's plenty to tell on that score, and perhaps a score to be settled.
(I will reveal here that even hedging things, Debbie's memoir, "My Life," was one of the best ever, ghosted as it was by the owner-editor-historian of the website, The New York Social Diary. He doesn't want me to tell you this "secret," but I will anyway.)
I KNOW who Tamara Tunie is. I've watched her countless times on "Law and Order: SVU" as Dr. Melinda Warner, the medical examiner, dealing with corpses and such. But I didn't know that she has extensive stage credits, from Shakespeare to Tennessee Williams, and that she has produced for both stage and screen. And I sure didn't know this beautiful woman could sing, but she can, and she's putting that talent back in the spotlight at NYC's famous Feinstein's from Oct. 30 to Nov. 3.
The show will be called, "Yes, I Sing!" because apparently she is aware that many of her fans don't know she began in musical theater and nightclubs.
The show, directed by Mike Renzi (he's worked with the likes of Lena Horne, Peggy Lee, Mel Torme and Blossom Dearie), will be an evening of "re-imagined show tunes and jazz standards."
Not so coincidentally, Tamara's gig arrives the same week her new film, "Flight" with Denzel Washington opens. Yes, she sings and makes movies with Denzel. What a woman! Call 212-339-4095.
(E-mail Liz Smith at MES3838@aol. com.)