The Movie: The Philadelphia Story, 1940 (Donald Ogden Stewart, screenwriter, from the play by Philip Barry; George Cukor, dir.)
Who says it: Katherine Hepburn as socialite Tracy Lord
The context: Tracy’s fiance, George Kittredge (John Howard), tells her that he thinks of her as a queen to be worshipped from afar.
How to use it: All women should have the opportunity to use this line at least once in their lives.
One Saturday night when I was in college, I was sitting around with a group of girlfriends, because none of us had dates. Someone -- it might have been my old roommate Leigh -- said, "It's because we're such goddesses that men are afraid to approach us." We all laughed, but secretly we hoped it might be true. Adolescent girls do want to be worshipped, and it's one of the major distinctions between girls and women. Women understand that being worshipped is just too damn tiring.
Today's post wishes a very happy birthday to the exquisite Ann Marie Stanton, who really is goddesslike. Sorry, Ann Marie, you can't help it. It's your nature.
On the subject of inappropriate feelings of adoration for ordinary human beings, did everyone see Bruce Springsteen on VH1's "Storytellers" this weekend? Somewhere earlier on this blog I said that Elvis Costello might be the greatest Christian existentialist of the late 20th century, with the possible exception of Bruce Springsteen; I request permission to revise and extend those remarks. Elvis Costello, genius that he is, runs a distant second. Distant.