Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Rudy Gives A Party

From the Exhibitor's Herald  - 1923


 

Each and Every Valuable Record

Below, one of the thousand Valentino probate documents I recovered in 2003. The documents are official copies of Valentino's probate case file and stand as proof that the original file was once housed in the Los Angeles County Hall of Records. The story of the theft of the original case file is revealed in detail in Affairs Valentino.


In this document above, Valentino is assigning his United Artists' contract to the ownership of his corporate alter ego, Cosmic Arts, Inc. I learned from the recovered court records how Natacha Rambova held all ten shares of Cosmic Arts stock. In essence upon the assignation, she owned Valentino's (her husband's) contract. As you see (above)Valentino transferred ownership to Natacha on April 21, 1925.

Four months later they would separate and he would have her sign away her interest in Cosmic Arts, Inc. The court records explain he, “had become dissatisfied with the management”, namely his wife, Natacha. From that day forward, Valentino and his manager George Ullman conducted his business under his new corporate alter ago, Rudolph Valentino Productions.

I found the subject of Cosmic Arts, Inc. to be fascinating and as it became a topic of dispute in Alberto Valentino's frivolous lawsuit v. Ullman, there is a great deal about Cosmic Arts, Inc. included in the recovered records.

How valuable these records are!... as the originals were stolen and now have vanished, secreted away into oblivion by the collectors.

How easy it was all those years to spin their false narrative about many things; Ullman, Alberto, Natacha... with those stolen records in their hands, they were free to say whatever they wanted to.

While we have been working to share the true story as at last revealed in those records I recovered.... they, the keepers of the original documents... impugn, defame, mock, bully and lie to maintain their upside down version of Valentino's life.

Regarding their “kill the messenger” campaign; I would point out that records such as these do not belong in the “trash can of Valentino history” as Tracy Terhune recently and shamefully referred to me and my work: 



With each document brought forth... each and every valuable one.... Terhune's relegating our work to the “trash can” appears less and less like someone determined to be the King of Valentino... and more and more an act of someone desperate to maintain the years of lies passed off as fact and determined to exploit collecting Valentino memorabilia to push a personal agenda.

I do not fabricate or forge documents and present them as the valuable gems they truly are.



Monday, November 23, 2020

"Long Tall Glasses"

Yesterday someone sent me the video below (link) as an amusing “Rudy Valentino” mention. In case any one is brushing up on their Valentino trivia, they might want to take a listen.

Lyrics: "I did a two-step, a quick step and a bossa nova, a little Victor Silvester and a Rudy Valentino, you should'a seen me movin' right across the floor, hand me down my tuxedo, next week I'm comin' back for more..."

I was going to post the time when the mention occurs in the video, but then thought that would ruin any effect. đź‘Ť

Enjoy!

And thank-you!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c44JQWLqrCY



Sunday, November 22, 2020

This Story Will Be Told

*The documents shared in this blog are all public record. Passages, selected pages and clips of images are excerpted under the guidelines of Fair Use as they are posted in brief to support the narrative. All of these public documents are available to anyone accessing the court archives; in this case the Court of Asti, case file #RG n. 4130/2014

I imagine my posting proof that my lawsuit, which I filed in 2014 against David Bret, was valid and that I won this case...will be met with his predictable accusation I forged it all. I want to go on record saying it is absurd to think I would or could invent an entire lawsuit in Italy... and I am above all not a reckless person and would never forge legal documents. With these records being publicly available in the court archive, it would be easy to prove their existence and content. In my opinion, Bret makes this claim out of desperation because he wants this story, and me, buried forever. He has opened blogs devoted to telling the world the entire case was fraudulent and a figment of my imagination. I think he knows this insane argument has only made the situation worse for him. 

This said he continues with the same bullying behavior and primarily with the assistance of Tracy Terhune who provides an illegal platform for him on the hijacked blog Terhune runs under my book's title.

It is curious how the allegation of forgery persists in the Valentino world. In 1930, when George Ullman found a copy of Paragraph Fourth, the portion of Valentino's will which designated his entire estate to Jean Valentino... Alberto Valentino cried “It's a forgery!” He demanded the judge summon the typist and the typewriter to prove it was all a fake. It was not and the judge admitted the document as a legitimate portion of Valentino's will.

Tracy Terhune pounded his drums of war against us for years while we were accused of forging all of those court records we discovered... this until he slipped up and admitted he had seen the actual records and knew of several collectors who had them in their possession at one time or another. When I posted a few of Michael Morris' e-mails to me, the “team” also cried, “Forgery!” They were not.

The following pages as excerpted from the case as filed v. David Bret are not forgeries and are supported by the screenshots also submitted as evidence. The entire document, the evidence filed and the official English translation of the verdict can be read @ www.zumayawinslawsuit.com

The document filed stands as an accurate account of Bret's actions against us until 2014. Further documentation of his actions from then until the present will be forthcoming. Proof of Terhune's providing him a platform to violate the verdict can be found on Terhune's hate Affairs Valentino blog.

I will not be silenced and this story will be told. 


Excerpt #1
Excerpt # 2-3 ( begins in mid-citation from a Bret post)


Saturday, November 21, 2020

Freedom of Critical Thinking

Yesterday while scrolling through my Twitter feed, I noticed several notices posted alerting me that a Tweet was removed due to content. Now I knew it was not removed for any adult content because that is permitted whole-heartedly by social media. I knew it was not a religious censorship or that someone was being bullied, etc. because that is all allowed. So what was it I was not allowed to read? With the sheer volume of Tweets flying through cyber-space are we to believe someone is sitting somewhere reading these? I so doubt that.

With the subject of the actual censored content aside, I felt furious with the motive... the presumption by this social media platform that I had to be protected. I have a critical mind and I can certainly judge what I feel is true and not true. How insidious that a social media platform which is presented as freedom of speech is now anything but.

I find censorship offensive and dangerous and I can of course relate this to my own situation. Today I read an article about advertisement in the 1920's in which the author claimed ads should be censored to protect the “weaker” segments of the population. And the cited “weaker” segments of the population then...children and women. Imagine my reaction to that!

But on to the obvious point...the censorship in the world of Valentino is out of control if not overwhelming at this point. He... who has positioned himself as the great controller of Valentino information, Tracy Terhune... works hard to delete what he considers “unfit content”. He, like the mysterious over lords of Twitter... denies people their right to critically judge for themselves by issuing false statements and lies about our work and yes he and his sycophants do routinely delete comments about our work on his Facebook groups. Affairs Valentino has been and still is a great target of the censor... Tracy Terhune. We have known this for a very long time and this was explained/confirmed to us in detail by Cindy Martin during her all too brief hiatus from the censor's court.

Michael Morris referred to these people as a cult with his definition of a cult being a group of people venerating a common theme or subject. His definition also included one of the most stunning points to be made about this Valentino cult... the censorship of information. This very act of censorship defines a cult leader... in that the leader propagandizes their followers into thinking they must heed the leader's advice about reading material. Does Terhune not realize that in his bashing, banning and brutalizing of Affairs Valentino, he is defining himself as a cult leader?

While social media platforms permit such behavior as the obvious bullying of us by Terhune on that hate blog he runs under my book's title which he disguises as a “literary critique”, they censor out tweets and posts to protect what? Me? As a member of the “weaker” segment of the population?

Not much can be done to reign in control of the social media giants, but in the case of Valentino censorship as purported by Tracy Terhune something could be done. Just last week we heard from a woman who wrote to encourage us who added she agreed with most of what we proposed but not all. That was great to read because she admits to critical thinking. Does Terhune in his endless censoring of all of our books, with his ritual slaughter of them on that fake blog not insult Valentino's followers and fans? Does he think people are incapable of thinking critically?

Michael Morris once wrote me saying he felt that such censorship/banning of a book was deeply un-American. American or not, it is deeply offensive to me. At this point I can not say if those deleted Tweets were offensive to me or untrue... because they are gone. And likewise, those people who have no idea whether they like, approve of or dislike, etc. our books, might want to just read them for themselves and find out.





Wednesday, November 18, 2020

The Last Man in Natacha Rambova's Life

When Natacha Rambova organized her expedition into the Valley of the Kings in the early 1950's as funded by the Bollingen Foundation, she hired a young artist, Mark Hasselriis as her epigrapher. Mark would spend the next twenty years with Rambova and live with her in her home in Connecticut. After her death, he went on to teach what he called Natacha Rambova's theories, extolling her Egyptological and cosmic research.

Michael Morris interviewed Mark Hasselriis for Madam Valentino and met with him on one occasion. After Michael's death, I was charged with completing Beyond Valentino, his Madam Valentino Addendum and hoped to locate a photo of the elusive last man in Rambova's life. I was so proud I was able to accomplish this.

I located his nephew who was forthcoming in sending me letters, artwork and images of this great and extremely fascinating, talented and learned man.

I also found it interesting Mark mentioned to Michael Morris how he felt the movie, “Valley of the Kings” was based on his and Rambova's expedition. Robert Taylor's character is even called, “Mark”. The plot is similar to their quest and as the movie depicts them in a torrid, yet secret love affair... one wonders. If they were lovers, I am sure it would not have been public as Mark was some twenty years younger than Rambova.

                                                     The movie based on Natacha and Mark's story. 


Mark told Michael Morris he was not sure he was “in love” with Natacha but he did “worship her” and he added that this is not always the best kind of love.

I know they did share a household at times as he refers to “their dogs”. Find Mark and Natacha's story and more images in Beyond Valentino.


A watercolor by Mark Hasselriis


                                             Mark sketching at his nephew's home in his later years

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Rambova on Hollywood

Natacha Rambova was articulate about her experiences in Hollywood and her marriage to Valentino in a candid interview she granted to journalist and friend Herb Howe which was published as, “Her Years as Valentino's Wife – Natacha Rambova's Marriage to the Greatest of Screen Idols Came to a Tragic End”, which was published in The New Movie Magazine, December 1929-May 1930.

This passage (below) is particularly well-said. I included the entire article in Astral Affairs Rambova and highly recommend it as insight in the Valentino/Rambova marriage. Herb Howe asks Rambova:

“Do you think it possible for two people to succeed with marriage there (Hollywood)?” I asked, “not just ostensibly but actually? ...or even with great friendship?”

“The only possibility, I think,” she said, “would be if they kept entirely out of it all and recognized it for what it's worth. Ah! - that's it. You are young, appearances are deceptive; you do not realize you are losing perspective and being absorbed until you are swallowed up. Hollywood is a hot-bed of malice. It seethes and boils in envy. Never a good word is spoken of anyone unless for publicity or to gain some personal end. Sweet words of flattery have vinegar on their breath. Eyes of malevolence watch you and even as you feel the tearing tongues of back biters. People go places out of fear. Fear is on parade: fear of being forgotten if you are not in the procession, fear of being talked about if you stay away and fear of the ravening critical eyes when you are present. It's a terrible thing and thank God I'm out of it all!” She spoke with mirthful detachment even of Hollywood, with an amused mockery that embraced herself.

“It's like the war,” I said. “You can laugh at it all when it is over.”

“Exactly,” she said, “And particularly at your own ridiculous self for taking it all so seriously.”

“And will you ever return?”

“Well, hardly! I have not heard from anyone there and do not expect to hear...”


Monday, November 16, 2020

The Pall

 Two pages from my long, long story which seems to have no ending.... a manuscript in progress.





Sunday, November 15, 2020

Genoa!


I stand gazing out at the harbor of Genoa, where a young man named Rudolph would leave on his great voyage to America in December of 1913. Can you find Baby Loola? I previously posted a piece by Natacha Rambova which had some formatting issues. I will rework that and post at a later date. 

Saturday, November 14, 2020

Some Valentino Trivia

 The following quip was found just now in a 1923 issue of Photoplay magazine. 




Friday, November 13, 2020

I Respond With An Opinion

I guess if anyone wanted to know who the real heroes of Rudolph Valentino's life were, they could take notice of just who Tracy Terhune and Simon Constable attack. It works that way because if I bring forth documentation that someone contributed to Valentino's life, in their continuing effort to ruin our efforts... they come out loaded for bear... as the expression goes... and on their predictable attack. They call it “debunking” but it is vicious distortion.

They have a simple format all in all... to find some small item which can be used as a starting point for their contrived narrative which they saturate in innuendo. No matter how many times I have pointed out the endless innuendo which they use to “debunk”, they do not seem to either comprehend what I am talking about, as in exactly what is innuendo... or they think it fine to muck up Valentino's truth with all sorts of haphazard and personally motivated implications...all of which are never sourced or valid.

If I mention anyone they rush in on the assault. This has been the exact case with my friend Michael Morris, my husband Renato Floris, George Ullman, Frank Mennillo, Natacha Rambova and most of all with Valentino himself. For while they scurry about thinking themselves geniuses as they devise some new ruination, what they are actually doing is ruining the legacy of Rudolph Valentino.

They portray him as rather dim-witted and clueless and surrounding himself with crooks. And with what is left of their trashing of his legacy by falsely portraying the people he trusted and loved as being crooks... they deliver the final blow with their innuendo. Imagine if Valentino knew about what they do in this regard and he could weigh in on it?

Tis' a sad, sad thing for us to bear the brunt of these snarky innuendo fiend's attacks as they deny the new history we bring forth and broadcast how all of our work will be in the “trash bin of Valentino history”.. (cite Terhune)... It is a sad, sad thing people who behave in this way... as some kind of Valentino Luddites... are believed at all.

On this subject of the Valentino Luddites... I respond to Terhune's odd attack on us for not loving his crypt service... well his argument it is a “fine Hollywood tradition”... carries no weight with me. Some things considered “fine traditions” are no longer so and should be stopped in my opinion. And many “fine traditions” have been done away with; i.e. the “fine Hollywood tradition” of casting white actors in non-white roles, the “fine” tradition of black-face entertainment is thankfully over with... and according to a Time magazine article, “Hollywood is Suddenly Serious: That's Not What America Needs Right Now”, by Stephanie Zacharek, published on March 1, 2018...”Hollywood is examining everything in a new, more starkly revealing light. Over the past five months alone, Hollywood has moved quickly to right long-establish wrongs and to rattle ancient modes of thinking...”

I have made no secret of my being uncomfortable with the “fine tradition” of the service in the crypt where Valentino tries to rest in peace. And I have little doubt my distaste for that is due in great measure because of the person who emcees the current celebration there every year at the exact moment Valentino breathed his last.

Because after a decade of tolerating this person's abusive and public, “Campaign to Ruin Evelyn” (cite Cindy Martin), who continues with his abject cruelty towards us (name-calling, ageism, death-watching, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, etc.)... in my opinion he is no longer worthy of the position.

But I am not the only person who thinks this is not a fine Hollywood tradition... but a macabre opportunity for insecure collectors to inflate their roles in Valentino's legacy by displaying their toys while trading the man's earthly remains for a quick profit and ego boost. That is the most distasteful aspect of the event.

Plenty of people, myself included will go to Hollywood Forever to pay homage to that sacred crypt. We will walk down that marble hallway, our footsteps echoing in the quiet as we anticipate. We will give our blessing to the man's final resting place and perhaps leave a beautiful flower or note.

But I personally have a problem with someone positioning himself and his collection of valuables, with the crypt as a backdrop while usurping Valentino's glory and meting out certain relics for his followers to touch, wear, preen over... and while slathering this display with a thick layer of religious self-righteousness.

I am not the only person who took exception with the services there. And on this I share what might be the only thing with which I am in full agreement with Alberto and Jean Valentino. (see below)

                                  From the Des Moines Register, August 30, 1951

Terhune took exception (calling me a disrespectful person) with my posting a communication I received in which someone referred to his show before Valentino's grave as a, “burlesque”.... I have to ask...

“Fine Hollywood Tradition”, "Burlesque" or "Degrading Carnival"?.... take your pick.

I know in the past, the emcee has pointed out that today the Valentino family attend the crypt fest but I say to that; shame on them for not knowing what the emcee has been up to on that bully blog. And if they do know what he does there to us... then more shame on them.

Perhaps, again in my opinion... if someone who had a nano of interest in Valentino beyond their merchandise, the almighty dollar and their own fragile ego was the emcee, I might not find it all so... distasteful.

And in closing... remember.. if you want to know who stands tall as the true and real heroes of Rudolph Valentino's life...Terhune and Constable's hysterical debunking will let you know.

#merchantsoutofthemasoleum

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Saint Renatus

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Renatus

I guess I am a day late but the venerated Saint Renato merits some homage along with his patron Saint Renato....November 12th. 



Wednesday, November 11, 2020

On that "Medieval Fanatical Effort"

Yesterday, in a conversation about the red cover of the First Edition of Affairs Valentino, I was informed the book has been referred to by Tracy Terhune as being “devilish” or ”of the devil” because it was red. I was not surprised to hear this because I have been the target of Terhune's “devil references” for a very long time... but the red reference was a new one I will admit.

In addressing this I must ask... Exactly what century is he living in? I explain.

Red is not only the color of the devil.... not at all. Quite the contrary. According to Catholic Humanist and Scholar, Kim Portelli, black is historically the color of Satan and not red. And the stereotypical imagery of the red devil is a 19th century romanticism invention. Yet the history of the significance of red is fascinating as red can signify both ends of the spectrum.

For example: during the Roman Empire red was the color of status, wealth and power and throughout history...second only to purple... the color red has been a symbol of royalty and majesty. Red becomes a sartorial reference in the reformation, the color of the robes of the Catholic Cardinals and the Pope, the color of Christmas, of hearts and love, as well as anger and embarrassment (red-faced), and yes to some the devil... because of its association with sin and lust (red light districts) In Asian culture, red is a symbol of luck and fortune.

Terhune might want to note that since the late 13th century, Jesus is portrayed in red.


                                                     1475 - Rogier Van der Weyden

But beyond my red book cover, which was based on a poster for Valentino's movie Stolen Moments (see below)...why does Terhune associate my book Affairs Valentino with the devil? Because in my opinion he is continuing a medieval tradition of trying to destroy a woman through the implication she is satanic... hence in opposition to god. This archaic thinking is not something new unfortunately.

One might ask how could the subject of Rudolph Valentino have a thing to do with Satan? As a result of the attacks made upon me by Tracy Terhune, it does. There are parallels to be drawn between his actions and the medieval association of uppity women (and uppity books I guess) being satanic ("afflicted by the Devil"). My book, Affairs Valentino was “forbidden” by Terhune and Satan was used in his effort. But this is not taking place in the year 1208 or even hundreds of years later in 1600, it is now... 2020. A few examples:

On April 1, 2013, a photograph of a Bible with the headline, “Deliver Us From Evil”, was posted at 2:03 by TRT96 on the affairsvalentino.blogspot site... which he still runs. The Bible in this image is cast in a heavenly light and it seems as if Terhune is hoping to generate an air of holiness in his plea for some higher power to free the world from Affairs Valentino. Why else would it be there? 

Two weeks later, on April 25, 2013, Terhune posted a new image on his Affairs Valentino blog's Home page announcing that I was “no woman of sound mind” with the headline reading, “Even Satan Shudders.”

He posted on May 4th , another headline with an image of, ”Get thee behind me Satan!”

Posted on May 14th, Satan being cast into a lake of fire. Bear in mind all of these references were and are made on a site under my book's title.

The inference that my book, its cover and me for that matter... that we are some product of Satan... is incredible sexism and I expose it for what it is... historical BS... In case Terhune does not know this, for his benefit I cite a previous post I made many years ago about this very subject:

“The association of witchcraft with Satan was not always so. The promulgation of defining witches as minions of Satan did not appear until the early days of the thirteenth century. It was in 1208, when Pope Innocent III, decried Carthar heretics as openly worshiping an evil deity in opposition to God; Satan. It was at this time Satan became a dark and sinister force. Specific behaviors, questioned by the church, soon came to define satanic action. This was not a scientific explanation but a medieval fanatical effort by the church to rout out critics and destroy those they perceived as enemies.

The association of Satan and witchcraft also evolved as a means to destroy uppity women; women who disobeyed the authority of their husbands, women who acted as midwives or women who dispensed herbal medicine. The list of possible infractions was long, confirming just what activities could be used to accuse a woman of following Satan. In his decree condemning the Cathar Heretics, Pope Innocent III, gave Satan a great deal of power in that he first established Satan as the enemy of God.

By the year 1400, women were being executed and accused of being Satan's hand maidens. So prevalent was the excuse that a woman's behavior was the direct result of her affiliation and worship of Satan, that in the one hundred and sixty years from 1500 to 1660, some sixty thousand people were executed. Of this number, over eighty percent were women.

In 1692, in Salem Towne, Massachusetts, long months of trials were held where women, and one man, were accused of being “afflicted by the devil”, deemed witches and hung on Gallows Hill. This tragic and thankfully brief period in American history reminds us how many women have had their unwelcome actions or unique behavior attributed to the Devil.”

I do not cast aspersions on people's religious beliefs, but I am not “afflicted by the devil” as Terhune's long history of posts and images allege... but I believe this is not a religious belief.. in my opinion for Terhune this is a concerted effort to impede my right to do business, a concerted effort for a decade now to deter people from reading a book... to act as some censor. But hundreds of years have passed since the inquisition and he should enlighten himself as to the rhetoric and imagery he is using. It is not just fundamentalist but reactionary and in my opinion wildly misogynistic. Enough already.

But worst of all...What Terhune is doing is by definition what the Catholic church refers to as, “blaspheme appropriation”... using Jesus and Christian beliefs to offend someone else.

Red is red and in the case of my first edition of Affairs Valentino... it is to be read! As far as being “devilish” I think it is Terhune's imagery which stands tall in that regard. And I add he has posted all of these images on the Home Page of his Affairs Valentino, "Literary Critique". 





Monday, November 9, 2020

Cocktails at Seven with Valentino?

The following is a post Renato made on his Facebook Group which I found interesting. He found the article in French and has translated a portion of it as it relates to the My Private Diary discussion. For more visit his group https://www.facebook.com/groups/609977536365557/

I quote:

Cautiously and with the help of Robert Florey, we see an intimate picture of, “Villa Valentino” in Whitley Heights.

This excerpt, which I translated into Italian from the French, is taken from a long interview of Charlie Chaplin, conducted by Robert Florey one afternoon in the spring of 1922 and published in the December 1922 issue of the French magazine Cinéa.

Florey, young and gifted with talent and resourcefulness, had just turned 21 at the time of his arrival in Los Angeles; arriving in Hollywood in September 1921 as a correspondent for the most important French cinema magazines. Thanks to the exotic charm of his French accent, at almost 190 cm tall and his engaging smile.. he was able to be accepted, also thanks to his valuable contacts in the French community, even by the most unattainable stars of American cinema. These stars greatly aspired to capture new audiences overseas, in the Old World which, at that time, was still a land of conquest for the greats of Hollywood.

The interview begins with the meeting between Florey and Charlie Chaplin on the mythical and no longer existing Crystal Pier promenade in Santa Monica; at that time a meeting and entertainment place for the stars.

After some commentary by Chaplin regarding the fairness of the girls crowding around the pier and on the beach, Florey cleverly starts an interview conversation which will then be published in the December 15, 1922 issue of Cinéa magazine.

At a certain point, from the waters of the ocean, the new Triton, Rudolph Valentino emerges and comes to join his friends ... but now we leave the pen to Florey who will tell us about the evening and, perhaps, how the idea of a travel diary was realized in Valentino.

“At this point in our conversation, the brilliant young lead actor Rudolph Valentino came out of the ocean and came to meet us.

'Where are you having dinner tonight?' he asked us, kind and smiling.

While Charlie, out of kindness, replied that he still didn't know.

I said to Valentino, 'But at your house, my dear!'

Rodolfo Valentino's cook has a reputation which reaches even the most remote corners of 'Cinelandia'. She is almost as famous as Georges Jomier, the king of cooks, and it is always with pleasure we accept an invitation to dinner from Valentino.

Valentino's mansion is built on the southern slope of the low-lying Whitley Heights hill in Hollywood.

It is the second wife of Valentino, Natacha Rambova, who made the house a real gem after drawing the house plan last year.

Frederick, Valentino's butler, has a good habit; preparing a dozen cocktails and a few caviar canapés every evening at 7 p.m., which are excellent to whet your appetite.

Depending on the number of friends Rodolfo invites for dinner (never more than 10 at a time) we always find a sufficient number of beautiful cocktails prepared! It is adored and practical.

Now, as we sat in Rodolfo's living room that evening and were toasting our host's glory, I took advantage of a moment's respite to take Charlie aside and out of the blue, ask him:

'Aren't you going to write your memoirs?'

'Yes and no, you know I'm quite lazy in writing.'

'However, was your first book My Trip Abroad a great success?'

'Again, yes and no, you know this business better than I do. It's been nearly four months since my book came out and the total circulation for America was 10,000 copies, is that okay in your opinion?'

'It's not huge considering the considerable number of your admirers.'

'Well, what can you do about America, they don't like to read, they don't have time, the public is too busy to devote a few hours a week to reading, they prefer cinema.'

'I am sure that My Trip Abroad in France will have a much wider circulation than the American one …'

'I know your compatriots love to read and I hope my publisher will entrust the translation of my book to an experienced writer who can render my thoughts exactly, in French.'

Our dialogue was unfortunately interrupted by a baritone voice, 'Dinner is served!' “

* These notes were written almost a year before Rodolfo's decision to write his own personal diary titled "My Trip Abroad". He succeeded in this project perhaps with some help from the editors who were popular at the time, such as Adela Rogers St. Johns, Photoplay Magazine's secret weapon. Her "sober sister" interviews with movie stars seemed to be so emotionally revealing as to create a completely fictitious sense of intimacy between reader and celebrity.

I mention Adela Rogers St. Johns not by chance because, according to the letter Natacha sent to Rodolfo during their marriage quarantine and while they were writing the poetry book Day Dreams, Adela was acting as editor and advisor. Here is what Natacha wrote to Valentino:

You can do something wonderful with this and I'm sure Adela St. Johns will agree with me. This could become your best poem and I have an idea for a truly amazing illustration. "

The letter I cited is included in its entirety by Baltasar Fernández CuĂ© in his book “El Verdadero Rodolfo Valentino”, which I translated into English and published under the title, “The True Rodolph Valentino”.

Sunday, November 8, 2020

"The Briquette"

                    I am wondering if we should re-print this edition of Affairs Valentino. Michael Morris always referred to it as, "The Briquette"... defined as, "a block of compressed charcoal or coal dust used as fuel."



Saturday, November 7, 2020

I Thwart

Dear “Happy Road Lawyer Banana”,

I received notification that you were following me on my Tumblr blog and I blocked you. Suffice to say I spotted you miles away on that one. But its kind of like trying to break in to an empty tool shed there on Tumblr. I do next to nothing on that blog so I can save you time and tell you … you are not missing a thing.

I picture you on a Saturday afternoon just now, bored with your anger thinking you could just try and find a way to leave some of your infamously awful comments on my Tumblr blog. Sad way to spend a day. Even a minute of a day.

I will apologize for not posting more, if at all on that Tumblr account but I have too much going on right now. Maybe if you used your real name to follow my more active accounts and did not post lies and vicious crap, slinging your mud our way... maybe I would not just automatically block you. I said maybe.

Over the years I have thwarted the “Happy Road Lawyer Bananas” as best I could because absorbing what I could not thwart... yet... is heavy to bear everyday. So something like that... so obvious... I block instantly.

So how did I spot you? Well easy. “Happy Road” tells me you are for some reason optimistic you will at last ruin us and be victorious... “Lawyer”?... well that identified you 100%... and “bananas”?...this being your dearest wish that I was truly insane.

Yesterday was a thrilling day of discovery here and I am re-inspired to finish up this latest work to share it all. Precious discoveries to complete this great story. So your hopes for the deterioration of my mental well-being are pointless all in all. I think I am doing just fine in that regard. 

I am not sorry to have blocked you, "Happy Banana” because after all the awful things you have done...you deserve to have many doors slammed in your face.

#merchantsoutofthemasoleum


 

Friday, November 6, 2020

Alberto Valentino & His Franklin Coupe

In previous posts I have detailed how Alberto Valentino gave a lifetime of interviews in his role as the only brother of Rudolph Valentino. One of his major talking points in every single interview... was his lamenting to interviewers that he and his sister Maria never got a penny from Rudolph's estate and only received a “few items” of “sentimental value”. After reading from the “Reporter's Transcripts”... or the court testimony... from the case Alberto brought against George Ullman, Alberto's claims are proven baseless. I add that these records are only publicly known about as I discovered official copies of about 1000 pages of them. The originals are still in the hands of the Valentino family and collectors.

The advances Alberto received against his future share of Rudolph's estate were all charged against Ullman when that second page of Valentino's will was discovered in 1930. Today, I address one small aspect of those advances which were absurdly held against Ullman by Alberto Valentino for some thirty years; with Alberto ..through a cruel legal loophole... trying to collect money from Ullman which he, Alberto spent and which Ullman advanced to him in good faith. (More about that in Affairs Valentino)

I address here specifically...the subject of Rudolph's Franklin Coupe. In this page of testimony, (below) the judge is clarifying that the “purchases” Alberto made at the estate auction were “charged as advances” against his future share. Alberto did not pay cash, out of his pocket, for his purchases. 


As we know all of those advances were about to be held against Ullman because a critical page of Valentino's will was then missing. One of Alberto's estate auction “purchases” which was charged against his “future share”... was Rudolph's Franklin Coupe.



A Franklin Coupe (above) in 1926, “...Final assembly took place in Franklin's home city of Syracuse, New York, and when this car reached a dealer in 1926, it cost $2,750, or an inflation-adjusted $38,025, a bit more than Packard's equivalent Six...” (today the exchange rate makes this car worth $41,115.95)

Bear in mind that the popular family car in 1926, the Ford Model T Runabout cost $360.00. So the car Alberto drove away, priced at auction at $2,100.00...(charged as an advance against his future share) was substantially more valuable than the average vehicle. The point to be made here is that while Alberto Valentino was driving around Los Angeles in his Franklin Coupe, he was having his lawyers pursue Ullman to pay him for the cash value of the car. How absurd is this? 

When Alberto learned that second page of the will was found, which proved he had no future share of Rudolph's estate... logically he should have returned the Franklin Coupe to Ullman as an asset belonging to Jean Valentino. Technically, the Franklin Coupe belonged to Jean... but Alberto saw to it that the cash value of the car was added to the amount of the “advances” made to him by Ullman... in this instance in the form of that car. 

Add to this...While tooling about Los Angeles in the Franklin Coupe...Alberto then proceeded to viciously impugn Ullman as a villain for decades, claim he never got a penny and only insignificant items of sentimental value from the estate and tell anyone who would listen how lawyers took all the money so Jean had nothing. No, that is not what happened at all.

But did Alberto know all along the content of that second page of the will... did he know Jean was Rudolph's sole heir and that he as a brother had no stake in the estate other than a weekly allowance? Why did that second page of the will disappear?

And I can imagine Ullman's reaction seeing Alberto driving that Franklin Coupe... while he was being forced to pay the man for it out of his own pocket. Not such a small sentimental item I say.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Rudolph Valentino's "Bambina"


Well it would have been, "Bambina" but the sentiment is the same. I think those Western Union workers could not help but share some of the contents of Natacha and Rudolph's telegrams because many of them appear to have been compromised. But how interesting she was spotted clipping pictures of Rudolph from magazines. I do not have a citation for this clipping and it was shared with me some time ago. 

 

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Monday, November 2, 2020

Maintaining My Dignity

  Stick and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me. I rise above.