Memoir

20 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Favorite Classic Hollywood Stars

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Producers Joan Kramer and David Heeley documented the careers of some of Hollywood’s greatest legends, including Fred Astaire, Katharine Hepburn, and James Stewart. Their portraits of these colorful acting icons brought them up close and personal to the stars. The duo’s new tell-all memoir In the Company of Legends, from Beaufort Books, captures the hilarious and moving stories about the most powerful names in Hollywood. In anticipation of the book’s release on April 16, and an April 7 TCM documentary special featuring interviews with Kramer and Heeley conducted by Robert Osborne, here are some of the most fascinating and intimate facts we learned about our favorite old Hollywood stars.
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Cool Girls Do It Better: On Kim Gordon’s Juicy, Modest Memoir, ‘Girl in a Band’

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In the final paragraph of her memoir, Girl in a Band, Kim Gordon details a makeout session with a man who is most certainly not Thurston Moore. Emergency brake pulled, the two sat in front of a house on a hill that Gordon had rented in LA for several weeks last year while getting back to her visual art roots in a post-Sonic Youth, post-Thurston world. The anecdote starts kind of bumpy because it is apropos of nothing, but it ends somewhere fitting — hopeful, even. “I know: it sounds like I’m someone else entirely now,” she writes after pulling away from this man’s “full-on grope” for reasons of practicality, “and I guess I am.”
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Michelle Tea’s ‘How to Grow Up’ Is an Honest Memoir About the Writing Life

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Michelle Tea has always been a fearless and honest writer with manifold talents — from gritty memoirs like The Chelsea Whistle to young adult books like Rose of No Man’s Land, her work has been characterized by its freedom and daring. It’s also characterized by its commitment to showing the reality of women’s lives in many forms, illuminating what the queer community in San Francisco is like for a young, passionate person.
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xoJane’s Embarrassing Yoga Essay and the Problem With “Honest” Writing

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Yesterday, xoJane published one of their “It Happened to Me” pieces by one Jen Caron. It detailed Caron’s experience in a yoga class she’d attended recently, one also attended by a “young, fairly heavy black woman.” Merely having this “other” woman in the room was apparently a kind of direct affront to Caron. Even sampling just one paragraph from the essay should give you an idea of how quickly everything goes to hell:

I was completely unable to focus on my practice, instead feeling hyper-aware of my high-waisted bike shorts, my tastefully tacky sports bra, my well-versedness in these poses that I have been in hundreds of times. My skinny white girl body. Surely this woman was noticing all of these things and judging me for them, stereotyping me, resenting me—or so I imagined.

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