Jayne Mansfield, my rival with loads of front
The first big event I attended in Hollywood was a cocktail party at Romanoff’s, a famous Beverly Hills restaurant. Everyone was there. I was the phenomenon of the moment, the person everyone wanted to meet.
There was Gary Cooper — so handsome he left me breathless — and Barbara Stanwyck, smiling; and if I looked out of the window, I could see Fred Astaire chatting with Gene Kelly. Mamma mia!At that moment, Jayne Mansfield arrived.
The crowd parted to let her through as she headed straight for my table. She was swaying on her heels, perhaps not completely sober, and there was something grand and imperious about each step she took. She knew that everyone had their eyes on her; after all, how could anyone fail to gape at her low neckline?When she sat down next to me and started talking, it was like a volcano erupting. As she got more and more worked up, I suddenly found one of her breasts in my plate.I looked up at her, terrified. She barely noticed, and left soon afterwards.Someone had taken a picture of us together, and the image subsequently went around the world.I refused to autograph copies of it.
Hollywood’s enchanted kingdom had its coarse and grotesque side, and I didn’t want anything to do with it.