Saturday, December 27, 2008

Eartha Kitt: "The Most Exciting Woman in the World"

What a Marvelous Lady--Eartha Kitt
I heard Eartha Kitt's distinctive voice doing an interview as the radio played in the taxi while I rode home on Christmas night 2008.

"That's Eartha Kitt's voice." I said. "Please turn that up so I can hear her." The cab driver turned up the volume, but added that Ms. Kitt had died that morning of colon cancer--she was 81. I was stunned.

I had always loved and admired Eartha Kitt from the first time I saw her purring and slinking and dancing around Gotham City as the villainous "Cat Woman" on the Bat Man tv series. She was so sexy and sophisticated and bad. She was also very pretty with an amazing and distinctive voice. I was mesmerized by her and captivated. She became one of the women I would later try to pattern my prowess around. Even going so far as to learn to purrrr.

I had the privilege of seeing her perform live in a musical here in Chicago in about 2005, although I can't remember which one. Afterwards, I met her briefly and told her of my devotion and admiration of her talent. She hugged me like a diva and the star that she was. It was also a warm hug like a sistah-friend who appreciated me for appreciating her. Our exchange lasted only 2 minutes or less, yet she had a profound effect on me. I was so honored to have met her and I told her so. She replied that she was honored to meet me. She was a class act.

A few years ago, may 20 or so I read an autobiography she had written where she chronicled her early life and how hard it was being from the south and being bi-racial and what she termed as unwanted. She was born Eartha Mae Keith on January 27, 1927 in Columbia, SC.

She was able to sing in 10 different languages and performed in over 100 countries. In fact, she could sing, dance, act and do voice overs--she was versatile and multi-talented to say the least. When she was a young woman she danced in the famed Katherin Dunham Dance Company. Katherine Dunham was one of my favorite performers as well. It's amazing to know that theyknew each other when they were younger.

Orson Welles described Eartha Kitt as "The most exciting woman in the world!" I agree with him--"Eartha, you were the bomb! And everybody knew it." Rest in Peace, my friend.

Christmas Wishes...Happy Birthday, Jesus!

It's been 2 days since the official birthday of Jesus Christ of Nazereth. This was really the very first year that I didn't take hard earned money earmarked for bills and other stuff--and spend it on others for Jesus' birthday.

I truly have the Christmas Spirit this year. I saw my three grandchildren, Anthony, Antoine and Candace who live in Illinois on the 25th. I spoke with my first-born son, Ali. My 5th born son, Curtiss gave me a set of 3 books by Dr. Suess--first time he bought a gift un-coerced. I love him for his thoughtfulness and his own love for books. My 2nd born-son gave me a lovely card. I cried when I read the sentiments. My grandson, Jaheim sent me a great card from Florida.

I spoke with my mother who informed me that my daughter was pregnant. What a wonderful surprise gift. I wish my daughter had told me.

I saw my friend Terri and her wonderful family--and I ate like a queen at her mom's house.

Thank you Jesus. This was a season of firsts and reunions. This is the reason for the season.