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“She hated being called Liz.”

Wednesday, March 23, 2011, 12:11 EDT Leave a comment Go to comments

The title is from the end of this article about today’s death of Hollywood legend Elizabeth Taylor. She went through her life being called “Liz” and hated it. Who knew? (Answer: Apparently, anyone who saw the 1999 interview in which she said it to Barbara Walters knew. I never watch Barbara Walters.)

Not being a big movie buff, I didn’t know a lot about Taylor except what I would pick up by osmosis. I do know that she was married many times. I don’t mean to be judgmental, because anyone can make a mistake in her youth and marry the wrong person for the wrong reasons, but wouldn’t you think that after the third or fourth divorce, she would take the hint that perhaps she just wasn’t cut out for marriage?

No matter. Her life was what it was, and apparently it included multiple medical problems, even in her younger years. It was too bad that she felt the need to project an image of youth even as she aged. I realize that the entertainment industry frowns upon women who look their ages, but someone as legendary as Elizabeth Taylor could have blazed a trail for older women in the performing arts. Besides, in this day and age, 79 (for some reason I thought she was older) isn’t what it used to be. Many people, women and men alike, remain very active at that age and beyond.

Anyway, I hope that her family takes her cue and inscribes her tombstone as she herself said she would want: “Here lies Elizabeth. She hated being called Liz. But she lived.”

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