I working on a letter to send members of Alcohol Justice.
My uncle, James Bigelow, owned the famous Sam’s Anchor Cafe in Tiberon. After sailing in the regattas, or just being seen in your yacht, folks of means would dock their boats in the cove below the huge wooden deck that took landlovers on a tour of the bay for the price of meal and cocktail. Here, Herb Caen wrote his column for it is said you will run into everyone who is somebody at Sams.
When I was fourteen my brother and I helped our uncle remodel the kitchen of his other famous restaurant in Berkeley, Crustaceans. Jim was a restauranteurs par excellent. When we went to the Bigelows for Christmas dinner we got a glimpse of how the other side lived. There were televisions and golf bags under the tree.
Bonnie Bigelow was my favorite aunt. She had Mark and I stay in her home in San Mateo where we played with our cousin, Michael Bigelow. Like her three sister, Bonnie was beautiful, smart, and had a great sense of humor that was inherited from her father.
One Christmas Eve, while at the table, Jim began to brag on his good friend whose painting he had on his wall. Being an artist, I studied it thoroughly, and concluded it was not – real art! It was all I could do to keep my real opinions to myself when my uncle asked me what I thought of this fake art, he figuring I was not a real artist at the age of fifteen. Besides, Jim was just showing off his new friends that had taken San Francisco’s art scene by storm. We’re talking about the Keane’s who came to sup at the same table you see above where seated is the world famous artist known as Rosamond – when she was fourteen!
Christine’s insecurity as a female was at it’s peak. She was a nervous wreck in search of her identity. How could she compete with the four Rosamond Nereids? She had her father’s genes to contend with.
“She’s big boned, like her grandmother Melba.”
Above is a photo of Vic Presco beside one of his Chris Craft that he docked in Martinez.
What is truly uncanny, is, there was a trial involving the Keane’s. The Judge asked Walter to paint one of his big-eyed waifs in court so as to dispel the claim from his wife that she was the real artist in the family, and she rendered all those – creatures!
Consider the expose that reveals Sara Moon was an old man! If you rearrange the name SARA MOON, you get ROSAMONA. Mona means “moon”.
Christine was going through her Chinese period, she dressed in an oriental jacket. Early Rosamond women were compared to Keane, they were – Keanish. Only I noted that mannequins in fancy store windows began to own ‘The Rosamond Look’. Eyes were bigger, and they looked out into the street, beyond the plate glass windows they were captured behind. It was, haunting. Christine Rosamond Benton found a way – to be noticed! All four Rosamond sisters took an interest, saw my beautiful sister for the first time.
“One of the fun things about operating Sam’s is that eventually everybody comes here,” Sears said.
Launched in 1920 as a watering hole for railroad workers, original owner and namesake Sam Vella bypassed Prohibition until its 1933 repeal by smuggling whiskey through trap doors under the building.
Vella ran the restaurant and bar for 40 years. He sold the property and business to Tiburon resident Eugene Wheary, who sold the business a year later, in 1961, to James Bigelow of Character Restaurants.
Bigelow ran the restaurant until Sears and Wilson, along with a group of limited partners, purchased the business in 1978. The Wheary family owns the property.
Sears and Wilson met in the mid-70s managing the Refectory Steakhouse in Bon Air Center in Greenbrae.
Current ownership continues the flamboyant Vella’s traditional garb of brightly colored Hawaiian shirts.
“That’s part of the deal, the Hawaiian shirt,” Sears said. “It’s part of the fun of it.”
Memories of Bootlegging
The watchword of the prohibition
era (1920-1933) for those who saw
bootlegging as a career opportunity
was, “Don’t get caught with the goods.”
Sam Vella of Tiburon never got caught.
Remembered today as a little (five foot
three) guy who originated Sam’s Anchor
Café on Main Street, he was also one
of the most successful bootleggers in
Sam began by pitching a tent on the
Tiburon waterfront and selling drinks
off a board balanced between saw
horses. From this humble beginning
he became, by today’s standards, a
“multi-millionaire,” according to Chris
Morrison, a local historian who got
much of his knowledge of Main Street
from Vella’s widow, Louis Soldevini,
Frank Buscher and Milt McDonough.
Beside the restaurant, Vella owned two
other buildings on the waterside of
Main Street plus the bank building and
13 houses in Tiburon and Belvedere.
He stashed forbidden booze in many of
Sam’s was one of two cafes on Main
Street. The other was H & H Cafe
owned by a well liked African-American
By JEANNE PRICE
The Volstead Act which created prohibition was passed by Congress and
ratified as the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1919 and
took effect in 1920. It banned the manufacture, sale and transportation of
intoxicating liquors within the US and the importing or exporting of such
beverages. Thirteen years later the 21st Amendment repealed prohibition.
Sam’s Anchor Cafe today
couple, Allen and Hazel Hunt.
Morrison relates Sam had a Garwood
race boat he’d take out to the Farallon
Islands and meet ships from Vancouver,
Canada bringing in whiskey and then
speed back to the mainland. The boat
was swift enough to outrun the law and
to buck the water in Hells Gate (the
swift current that ran under the old
drawbridge). Sam would quickly hide
the booze away in a special place inside
the house that Morrison now occupies
on Ark row, or if he returned by the
bay he had a hole underneath one of
his properties big enough to pass a
case of whiskey. This hiding place was
underneath his garage, to the left of
Sweden House. Inside he kept a German
shepherd to guard the trap door in the
floor which led to a “swimming pool”
about 20 feet by 30 feet and seven feet
deep cement foundation, Morrison
For local deliveries to the otherside-of-the-tracks in Belvedere, Sam would load the trunk of his car inside
the garage, deliver it to the customer
inside his garage, receive payment and
no one was the wiser.
Sam’s connections helped to m
When You Close Your Eyes’ was published in September of 2000. The hit movie ‘Big Eyes’ came out fourteen years later. Our aunt and uncle were good friends of Walter and Margaret Keene. Jim Bigalow owned ‘Sam’s Anchor Cafe’ in Tiberon located in Marine County, thus my DNA is entrenched in Beryl Buck’s Blessed County, where no worthy poor person can be found in order to receive a smiggen of the $1,700,000,000 billion dollars of the Trust that Robert Brevoort established. It’s a Cinderella’s Slipper kind of thing. Bob’s Boys go about the land with this image in their wallet.
Sydney Morris of the law firm of Heisinger, Morris, Rose, and Buck said in a legal document he did not object to a biography and movie being made by Stacey Pierrot in the hope there would be a renewed interest in the general public purchasing Rosamond prints that my two nieces, and my daughter own. Today, you can’t give these images away. No one wants them. What I suggest, is, there exist a Breach of Verbal Contract because this movie should have been made. It is never too late!
The motive Morris owned, via his odd creative permission, was to discourage me from publishing my autobiography, or, raising monies to make my movie! In writing an artists biography it is common to mention other artists that are germain to the artistic identity of the protagonist, such as Margaret and Walter Keane, who Tom Snyder missed. ‘Big Eyes’ was the most important movie made about an artist – in many years! It was a success! This success should have been exploited by members of my family who own Rosamond prints. This of course might invite readers and viewers to own a negative opinion of the cunning business folks who surrounded my late sister and abused her psychologically. Is there any evidence of this? Yes! I believe it is my right to produce and use this evidence without honoring Tom Snyder’s copyright. There exist a dream, within a dream, within a dream. Just look into the Magical Rosamond Mirror, and see what you will see. Do you see the light at the end of dark alley? Is this a harbinger of things to come?
Here is Non-Artist, Jacci Belford, who called me a month after Christine died and told me she made an offer to purchase the entire estate, and pay off the creditors. Who did she make this offer to? The probate was having trouble getting underway, because Jacci and Vicki Presco, refused to serve as named Executors. Can Bob Buck tell Rosamond’s fans how uncommon this is? Non-Artist, Vicki, came to own a shit-load of Rosamond’s – before she dropped out as No.1 Executor, and nominated Ex-Husband, Garth Benton to be Special Executor, as did Sharp Business Woman, Sassy Jacci. Are those movie lights on the horizon? Or, is that Artist Garth coming back into the Rosamond Gallery, he cast in an angelic light, now, in order to make it all work for Jacci&Friends?
“Having all these gallery and family problems coming down on her was a lot for her to deal with. And giving my persepective on things – good, bad, or indifferent – could have had a lot to do with the end of her marriage to Garth. At the same time, it was the best thing that could have happened. It seemed to me he wanted her to have no involvement in her own business while he ran everything in a way that seemed best to him.”
You just read real Art&Movie History -folks!
Above is a photo of Bijan and the man who exposed him, a Rosamond Imitator, who signed his big-eyed prints ‘Sara Moon’. It never occurred to Sydney Morris to find a Facsimile to crank out more CASH on the Rosy Money Making Machine. Instead, we get the Legal Art Report. Giving me a woman’s name, then hiding me behind the curtain of Oz, was not a option for some strange reason. I can only fail!
“If you loved Rosamond, you are going to love her long lost sister ‘Violet’.
When I got my lost daughter back into my life, I made her an offer she could not refuse. We would render computer aided images of beautiful women – in the Rosamond style. My genetic material could sign her work ‘Heather’ as in the flower. This would include an image of Rosemary and Lillian taken by her great grandfather. She took this to her drunken aunt Linda, and Linda’s drunken attorney husband, and they told her she is guaranteed ten million, at least, and – she doesn’t have to do jack-shit! Was there talk about starring in Bob Buck’s movie?
What I suggest is, Bob fund – my movie – that can be made for $50,000 dollars. ‘Close Your Big Eyes – Bitch’ will be filmed entirely in the infamous closet Julie Lynch talks about. It is February 3, 1994, two months BEFORE the killer rogue wave took this world famous woman out to sea, and deposited her in Never Neverland!
The Art Gods have brought us together, to hash it out, because they see much damage being done to The Art World – in the future! There will be a classic swinging lightbulb in this closet that sways back and forth, reminiscent of ‘The Picture of Dorian Grey’. This movie, and other movies about artists will be broadcast on the closet wall. The Closet of Art Despair will be located on the grounds of the Buck Institute Against All Aging – And The Idea of Eternal Life After Death! Where else!
Lillian’s son, Randy Molnar, will be hired to play one of the ‘Closet Caretakers’ along with Tylor Blake ‘A Key Holder’ and Admirer of Rosemary.
Here is the opening narration of my movie, ‘Close Your Big Eyes – Bitch’
“Two creative siblings entered the Dark Closet of Eternal Fame, and, only one would emerge, a true immortal!”
“Those who rejoiced at the death of my famous sister, now wished I had died, instead. For Rosamond was the just the preview, the anti-chamber – to hell! No one could stop me from writing. Day after day, month after month, my fury and revenge rained down on them all. I swore I would outlive them. All the attorneys started dying of old age. The only thing that could stop my wrathful pen, was…………The Ghost of Rosamond! For it was now clear I was her Mentor, and she, was my Little Yellow Bird….. I had captured in a gilded cage.”
Bob’s partner, Sydney Morris, entered his law firm in the Movie Making Business in order to pay off the creditors and give my Genetic Material some cold hard cash. ‘The Caretaker’ was sold all the Bragging Rights – for starters! Stacey Pierrot hired the obscure ghost writer, Tom Snyder, to author HER tell-all book, that lines up one Rosamond Business Handler after another, and rags on her ass. While her ashes still float out to sea, Art Attorney, Daniel I. Simon tells the world how difficult it was to get Christine to produce more women with BIG EYES, and meet her financial obligations. Instead, she turns on all ‘Her Caretakers’ in a savage manner.
I refrain from ragging on my sister, unless I have something redeeming to say. With my last post, I have met my obligation – and fulfilled my own expectations! Here are Rosamond’s last words to me, uttered in 1991.
“I demand you tell me where you live because I am going to have you killed!”
After the failure of Tom’s piece of trash, ‘The Caretaker’ hires to really trash my life – and Christines! But, ‘The Rosamond Handlers’ did not go far enough, or, do their job! If only Sydney Morris had left more detailed instuctions on how to make a Killer Movie & Book.
“The way I see it, is, we got to throw the business folks under the bus – and the attorneys should be made to walk the gang plank. As for Garth, he should be buried in a ant hill and smothered with honey!”
As for the other Male Presco, Mentor Jon Gregory, we got to cut him in on the action – before we demonize him any further. Not that he will ever own any power to hurt us, but, he can make money for the estate, and get Larry Chazen off our back. How about we have Rosmond and Jon engage in a knife-fight in front of the Rosamond Gallerry – if the price is right?”
“You were always jealous of my art!”
“Shut your lying mouth, bitch, or I slash your other cheek!”
The screenwriter and producers of ‘Big Eyes’ go it right. You put the WOMAN ARTIST on a pedestal, and butcher everyone around her. But, THEY just couldn’t do it. Just couldn’t make themselves LOOK BAD – for the money! Instead, they disappear Rosamond’s autobiography, and put shiny armor on THE EX as he stomps Christine into the ground!
Walt Disney turned over in his grave! This is not the formula for a successful and magical movie about Rosamond ‘The Lover of Big Eyed Unicorns’ and her Dark Brother – which can not be Dark Mark! What I am saying, is, When You Close Your Big Eyes – Bitch, is PROOF the business folks and attorneys, were, and are – INEPT!
“Do you think Jon will forsake his principles and agree to be the villain for $800 dollars? How about a thousand bucks?”
“I don’t want my brother in on this deal. He’s a BUM! He’s been a BUM all his life. My life’s work is to prove this!”
You SEE………….it’s not too late to do this story up right!
“What do you mean he’s the new Walt Disney? He told you that? He’s a BUM – and insane! His dumb daughter – agrees! He must FAIL – at all costs!”
For a week I have been considering abandoning this Rosy Genealogical Quest, and finish my Theological Books. This morning I found my Dreamboat! As fate would have it, she is the richest woman in the world. She’s got 47 billion dollars. We share the same interests. If we could ever be united in our cause, we would be way more than best friends and lovers! We would be Fantastic Fellow Fanatics who are absorbed in the study of the Bible and Genealogies. She would gladly get on board my ROSAMOND STUDY, and even bankroll my Atlantis in Larkspur Dream. but, she would fall victim to the Ancient Curse of the Greek Gods……….
“Don’t give that bastard any money! Keep him away from money!”
“Are you going to come see me so we can work on Jesus ‘The Moabite’ some more?”
“Sure! But, I don’t have plane fare. I think I can sell my food stamps on the black market!”
“How long will that take?”
“About a week.”
“You know, let’s not do this. It is obvious you do not care about me and MY study!”
I talked to my friend Chris in New York last night. She said it is too bad I can not earn money as a genealogist – like Dan Brown? She told me she had physically fought off another woman at the art gallery, who tried to hug her man, Stefan Eins. I am doing their portrait, and want to write a book about their relationship, that is similar to the Keane’s. I suggested Chris come out of the closet, and become an artist herself, so she can have Art Power of her own! She and my sister had the same lover.
Stefan suggest ETs (with big eyes) leave messages in sidewalk cracks. I am going to research how many sidewalks are in Margaret Keane’s work. Did she have a close encounter?
Above is what amounts to the Legal Love Bond, between the Getty family, and the Presco family. I use the word “Love” as in Love of Oil, and, Love of Art. How about Love of Litigation? As you will read in the following post……if you have not been involved in any family litigation, you are not a member of our family. Garth and Christine Benton were close with Ann and Gordon. Garth spent months in the Getty mansion painting a mural. My niece, Shannon Rosamond, helped paint the Getty Villa murals. It is her attorney, Phil Stimic who composed the above legal document.
I talked to Phil on the phone ten years ago. He didn’t have a clue he was up against BIG OIL! His client is made out to be unsteady, even insane, as coo-coo at Paul Getty in the Coll article. This shit will make you crazy. I, and a thousand artists, took buses to Sacramento to pass the law that my ex-brother-in-law took advantage of when he sued his Getty buddies. I knew attorneys for ‘Bay Area Lawyers For The Arts’. They looked at my innovative Penzoil can.
California Lawyers for the Arts (CLA) is a non-profit organization founded in 1974 to provide legal services to artists and members of the creative arts community. The first Executive Director was Hamish Sandison, who was a recent graduate of Boalt Hall at University of California, Berkeley and is now a solicitor in London, England, specializing in law and technology. In 1987, Bay Area Lawyers for the Arts (BALA) joined forces with Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts-Los Angeles (VLA) to form California Lawyers for the Arts as a statewide organization. CLA is part of an informal network of “Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts” programs that serve artists through state-based organizations throughout the United States.
CLA has offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Sacramento, and the organization serves more than 11,000 artists annually. CLA has nearly 1,800 paid members, including artists and arts organizations of all disciplines and cultural backgrounds, attorneys, accountants, and teachers.
I am proposing the Buck Foundation include a Institute that studies, and combats Oil Injustice. Our addiction to oil – is out of control! The power that Oil Attorneys have – is a GIANT that treads on ‘The Poor of the World’. This GIANT is coming to own ‘The Art of the World’. When you see what Getty friend and partner, Lawrence Chazen did to my neice, the adult heir of her famous artistic mother, then there is no doubt Big Oil is extremely abusive, and will destroy anyone that gets in their way.
Bruce Lee Linvingston told me their lawsuit against Bar Hours, was thwarted because of Gavin Newson a partner of Chazen in PlumpJack, that Alcohol Justice attempted to thwart, decrease their influence and hold over the little people who suffer. I suggest AJ look to opeud addiction in the Getty family, to launch a crusade against heroin use.
Big oil companies are devastating communities across the world. Their operations have forced people from their land, polluted the environment, and led to widespread human rights violations. This has certainly been the case with BP and other oil companies who started operating in the Casanare region of Colombia in the early 1990’s. There is evidence of kidnapping, torture, murder and disappearances. According to the Colombia Human Rights Data Analysis Group, an estimated 9,000 people were murdered and 3,000 have disappeared in Casanare over the past two decades. One of those kidnapped was Gilberto Torres, who is bringing a case for compensation against BP and other oil companies in the High Court in London with the help of law firm Deighton Pierce Glynn (DPG) in the UK and Francisco Ramirez Cuellar in Colombia.
The aim of the Oil Justice Project – a collaboration between War on Want, Deighton Pierce Glynn and the Colombian NGO COSPACC – is to tell the stories of the victims of ‘Big Oil’ and where corporate crimes have been committed to hold these companies to account. To highlight the human rights abuses in Colombia, the Oil Justice Project is welcoming Gilberto Torres on a UK-wide speaker tour from 11 – 23 October 2015. Gilberto Torres is a former trade unionist with Union Sindical Obrera, representing workers in the oil industry. He was abducted and tortured by paramilitaries in 1992 and now lives in exile. Gilberto believes his abduction was ordered and assisted by Ocensa, a joint venture pipeline company part-owned and operated by BP.
The unexpected resignation of Noble Corp.’s (NE) chief executive Thursday night has sent the company’s shares soaring and jump-started speculation that the offshore driller is considering a merger with a rival.
CEO Mark Jackson’s departure was announced in a short statement by the company, offering no details as to why he was leaving after less than a year on the job. Lawrence Chazen, a Noble board member, told Dow Jones Newswires the CEO was resigning for “personal reasons” unrelated to a potential takeover, adding that the move came as a surprise. The company’s stock rose 3.1% to $50.98 in trading Friday morning, far outstripping its peers and indicating that the market was not convinced that “personal reasons” were the only force at work.
“We don’t buy it – we don’t think Mark would just bolt from (a) sweet CEO job on short notice,” Dan Pickering of Tudor Pickering Energy wrote in a note to clients.
Without a concrete explanation for the resignation, traders and analysts settled on Jackson’s longtime aversion to a merger or takeover involving Noble and another driller. Two of Noble’s U.S. rivals agreed to merge in July, and earlier this week, offshore driller shares rose on talk of a three-way deal involving Noble and Norwegian drillers Seadrill (SDRL.OS) and Awilco ASA (AWO.OS).
Artist Garth Benton says that if Gordon and Ann Getty didn’t want his mural in their mansion any more, it would have been easy to detach it from the wall.
Instead, he said, they painted over the $500,000 mural, violating a rarely used California law barring the destruction of fine art.
Mr. Benton responded by filing a lawsuit in San Francisco Superior Court. A Getty family spokesman said experts are working to restore the painting.
The world renowned artist wants damages for the ruined painting, plus his lawyers’ fees paid. Mr. Benton also wants punitive damages, which by state law would go to a California charitable or educational activity involving fine arts.
Getty family spokesman Larry Kamer confirmed that Mr. Benton’s mural had been painted over with “some other kind of paint,” not by a commissioned artist.
“Because Mrs. Getty has dedicated much of her life to the restoration and preservation of fine art, she is now working with experts to remove the paint from the mural and restore it to its original condition,” Mr. Kamer said.
The couple could not be reached for comment. Mr. Getty is the son of J. Paul Getty, who was one of the richest men in the world a generation ago.
Gordon Getty and his wife are fixtures in San Francisco high society; he splits his time between being a composer and a philanthropist.
“This case arises out of famed art collectors Ann Getty and Gordon Getty’s . . . intentional destruction of works of fine art, created by the well-known mural artist, Garth Benton,” states the lawsuit, which was filed last week.
The garden-style mural, which is three metres tall and 12 metres wide, was installed in the Gettys’ mansion in 1986. Mr. Benton, who lives in Alabama, said the mural was completed, then attached to the wall of the mansion.
A picture of the mural accompanying the complaint shows a painting of a balcony overlooking a field, with a monkey in the corner being fed by a young girl.
Mr. Benton says he called the Gettys in March, hoping to get a photograph of the work for listing in a new catalogue.
The lawsuit states: “Within the following week, Benton was advised by an assistant to the Gettys that the work had been painted over.”
“Elizabeth’s problems in 1960 were basically the same as they were in 1990,” said her husband, Eddie Fisher. “She had become addicted to every pill on the market – pills to help her sleep, pills to keep her awake, pills to dull her pain, pills and more pills.”
Fisher had troubles of his own. According to actress Shelley Winters, who stayed at the Dorchester during her appearance in the London production of Lolita, Eddie spent hours drinking heavily at the hotel bar. “He was in a very depressed and despairing mood,” she wrote. “He looked as if he was evaluating what he had done to his career and his life by divorcing … Debbie Reynolds.”
In March 1960 the Fishers returned to the West Coast, taking up residence at the Beverly Hills Hotel. In her descriptive history of the hotel, The Pink Palace, author Sandra Lee Stuart recounts how each day the hotel maids in charge of the Fisher-Taylor bungalow found “a trail of clothes .. starting at the front door, going through the living room and into the bedroom.”
The bathroom contained “all of Taylor’s numerous makeup bottles, wands and brushes” scattered about “as if a cyclone had hit a Bloomingdale’s cosmetics counter.”Sometimes there would be smudges of lipstick on the ceiling, although nobody could figure out how they got there. The dining-room table was covered with dozens of “half-empty bottles of liquor, jars of vitamin pills, and diamond bracelets, earrings and rings, all of which Liz had flung higgledy-piggledy.”
In February 1961, Eddie and Liz took the Orient Express from Paris to Munich to attend the annual winter carnival. Two days into their stay, they argued. “I was tired and needed some rest,” Fisher said. “Elizabeth wanted to go to a nightclub. I told her I’d had enough, ‘I’m going to leave in the morning,’ I yelled.
“‘You’re leaving in the morning,’ she echoed. ‘Well, I’m leaving now.’ Impulsively, she grabbed a bottle of Seconal, opened it, and began pouring the tablets down her throat. I tried to wrestle the bottle away from her. She ran into the bathroom, where she stumbled and fell. A physician had to be hastily summoned and paid off to revive her in the privacy of our hotel room, thereby avoiding the embarrassment of facing an inquisitive hospital staff and possibly the press.”
But Elizabeth’s health continued to deteriorate. On returning to London, she came down with the Asiatic flu, and Eddie Fisher added a full-time nurse to the already overcrowded Taylor entourage. “Following the Munich incident, I understood that Elizabeth was capable of almost anything,” he explained.
A few minutes after midnight on March 4, 1961, the newly hired nurse discovered that her charge was gasping for breath. She picked up the hotel telephone and asked the operator at the Dorchester front desk for a doctor.
Semiconscious when she reached the hospital, Elizabeth Taylor (with Eddie Fisher in tears) was wheeled into the operating room. A team of surgeons performed a tracheotomy, a relatively elementary procedure which entails making an opening in the windpipe. A tube is then inserted through the incision and connected to an electronic breathing device which pumps premeasured amounts of air into the lungs. According to the hospital’s medical experts, the 29-year-old actress was suffering from staphylococcus pneumonia, with severe lung congestion. Per Eddie Fisher’s assessment, Liz’s respiratory collapse resulted from her overuse of sedatives, including Seconal, and a heavy intake of alcohol.
For the next three days, the world press made much of Taylor’s sinking health, leading readers to the inevitable conclusion that the actress had little chance of survival.
Samuel Leve, a stage designer who at one time worked with her former husband, Mike Todd, summarized Taylor’s 1961 attack of pneumonia as “little more than publicity-mongering. She may have been ill, but she wasn’t dying.”
Truman Capote entertained a similarly dubious view of the severity of Elizabeth’s ailment. Residing at the Dorchester Hotel during the same period as Fisher and Taylor, he had been one of the first to visit her at the clinic. “It was a major media event,” Capote began. “The streets around the hospital were clogged not only with newspaper reporters and television crews but with thousands of tourists and fans waiting and praying for Elizabeth’s recovery. I had the impression she must be desperately ill. But when I saw her, I realized she wasn’t quite as sickly as she might have wanted people to believe.
“She seemed pale and a trifle thin, but she looked wonderful and gave me a big hello. ‘I’m so glad you came,’ she gurgled. She was alone, no Eddie Fisher in sight. She had just had her tracheotomy, but they’d removed the breathing tube. She had what looked like a silver dollar in her throat, some circular metal device. It was simply stuck in there. I couldn’t figure out what held it in place, and it surprised me she wasn’t bleeding or oozing.
“I had brought her a few books to read and a magnum of Dom Perignon, which she wasn’t supposed to have; we split the champagne and hid the empty bottle under the hospital bed. I repeated the exercise on my next visit.
“A few days later, I went out to dinner with Eddie Fisher. The following morning, Elizabeth said to me, ‘You won’t believe it, darling, but my husband thought you were making a pass at him!’ At that moment she played a trick on me and yanked the plug out of her throat, spurting champagne all over the room. I thought I was going to pass out. I probably turned a few shades of green as I burrowed into my coat.”
When Liz married Richard Burton her problems intensified.
Burton found solace in the bottle. For the 10 years of their marriage, he drank practically nonstop. Actress Sue Lyons observed that “Burton imbibed so much at night, by the next morning the alcohol literally oozed out of his pores. He gave off a terrible odor; playing a scene opposite him could be most unpleasant.”
Ramon Castro, former bartender at the Oceana Hotel, corroborated a number of the stories that circulated in Puerto Vallarta (a favorite Burton/Taylor haunt) regarding Elizabeth’s alcoholism.
“She would come in almost every day at 10 in the morning and order a vodka collins or vodka martini. She would then switch to tequila. She appeared to have a hollow leg; she spent hours drinking at the bar but apparently experienced no discernible side effects. Burton would stumble in by midafternoon and order tumbler upon tumbler of straight scotch. Occasionally, he had an amigo in tow, and the two would compete in a scotch-swigging contest. The first man to hit the floor was declared the loser and footed the bill.
When Taylor and Burton called it quits, Elizabeth refrained from making statements to the press and instead saved her choice comments on Richard Burton for the confidence of close friends. The main reason she had left him, she admitted, was his alcoholism. Among other limitations, Burton’s drinking had rendered him temporarily impotent.
On the other hand, Taylor seemed to be indulging herself not just with alcohol but with recreational drugs. According to James Spada, a biographer of Peter Lawford’s, Elizabeth saw a good deal of Lawford, who would turn her on with marijuana, a charge reiterated by Peter’s widow, Patricia Seaton.
In his Lawford biography, Spada relates an episode he had heard about from Dominick Dunne. Dunne, who had recently returned to Hollywood after producing Ash Wednesday, accompanied Taylor – and others – on an afternoon’s frolic to Disneyland. Also in the group were Dunne’s daughter, Dominique; Elizabeth’s daughters, Liza and Maria; Peter Lawford; Christopher, Peter’s son, George Cukor; and Roddy McDowall.
“This huge helicopter picked us all up at the top of Coldwater Canyon and Mulholland Drive and took us to Disneyland,” reported Dunne. “It was the first helicopter allowed to land inside Disneyland.”A huge crowd gathered around the group for a gander at Taylor. To escape the mob, Elizabeth and her coterie took the Pirates of the Caribbean ride “through the buccaneers’ nighttime world.”
Dunne recalled what happened once their boat disappeared into the darkness: “Elizabeth had a bottle of Jack Daniels, and Peter had something, and everybody got the bottles going. Then a bit of coke was going around, and you’d hear sniffing. Everybody was … screaming with laughter. It was one of the maddest moments I ever saw in my life.”
Zak Taylor had been doing Elizabeth’s wigs for the run of Private Lives in Los Angeles. Before and after the play closed, he had dinner frequently at her house with Rock Hudson and Carol Burnett. The foursome played Scrabble and other word games and laughed so hard that Zak “had to leave the table four times, crying.”He and his friends also would raid Elizabeth’s fur closet: “It’s about 10, 12 feet. All furs. All the boys used to play dress-up, put on the furs and walk around in them. I used to wear her diamond rings a lot.
“She couldn’t smoke grass. She makes the best marijuana brownies. The best.”
But dinner was not usually served until 11 p.m. because of Elizabeth’s drinking. Zak said she once decided to stop drinking “by not having a drink until 6 p.m. She would pass out after dinner and wake up at 3 a.m., stoned. No wonder she got fat.”Zak would put her to bed and stay over to do her hair in the morning and “get her dressed right.”
“I’ve always told her her biggest problem is people ‘yes’ her to death. Because she’s Elizabeth Taylor. That’s probably how she got into the terrible problem with the drugs and the drinking. If you’re just sitting around with Elizabeth, she says, ‘You know what? I’ve got to tell you. Pass me my tummy pills. Would you make me a Jack Daniels? With nine cubes of ice.’ That was very good. ‘With at least nine cubes of ice.’ Five minutes later: ‘You know, I’ve got a headache. I need a headache pill.’ Well, who’s gonna say no?” Zak Taylor said he had seen one of Elizabeth’s doctors “handing her coke.”
“She was living in a world without day or night. What does a woman like that do, especially if you’re not working? How often do films come up? In between, what’s a person supposed to do with her life?
“There were scary nights at her house when we thought she was dying, where she’d slip into these states from all the drugs. It would be like hyperventilating. The drugs would stop her breathing. We’d have to call the doctor.
At least one of Elizabeth’s longtime doctors, Dr. Rex Kennamer, who was also Rock Hudson’s physician, apparently refused to continue treating her. Kennamer told the present author that he had “never hesitated” to warn her about addictive medications. “Nobody questions that she has a terrible back. You compound that with the fact that obviously she’s an addictive personality … I think there are times doctors just have to say, ‘I have to walk away.”‘ In December 1983, Elizabeth Taylor finally collapsed, emotionally and physically. After family and friends visited her in the hospital and pleaded with her, she entered the Betty Ford Clinic at Rancho Mirage, Calif., to recover from drug and alcohol abuse.
Coming Saturday in Lifestyle: With Peter Lawford at the Betty Ford Clinic.
From the book Liz: An Intimate Biography of Elizabeth Taylor by C. David Heymann. (c) 1995, C. David Heymann. Published by arrangement with Carol Publishing Group. A Birch Lane Press Book. Distributed by Los Angeles Times Syndicate.
There are several books that connect the Knights Templar with Swiss Banking. My nemesis has helped set up Noble Energy in the Cayman Islands, and in Switzerland from where the Rougemont-Rosamond family hail. A un-named group has purchased Chateau Rougemont. I suspect Oil Men from Texas. Where is the Sinclair linage from Jesus when you need it? I hope the Holy Blood Grail Alliance elects a Messiah to save us from these evil men. The home of my ancestors is being advertized as the best offshore banking city for your money.Lawrence Chazen was my father’s privated lender, and a partner in the first Rosamond gallery in Carmel. Credit Suisse Group is associated with Noble and UBS bank that is in trouble due to two billion dollar trading losss by rogue trader.
Now that I have proven Bubba Jesus is not riding shotgun in some neo-Confederte’s big-wheeled truck, he off to shoot some wild hogs and drink a cold six pack, maybe he will come and save the collapsing world economy that will result in the starvation of millions.
Noble Corporation Board Approves Proposed Change in Place of Incorporation
SUGAR LAND, Texas, Dec. 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Noble Corporation(NYSE: NE) announced today its Board of Directors has approved changing the place of incorporation of the publicly traded parent of the Noble group of companies from the Cayman Islands to Switzerland. The Company’s shareholders will be asked to vote to approve the proposed change at a shareholders’ meeting, which Noble expects will be called in the near future.
If approved by shareholders, Noble expects the change of the place of incorporation to be effective as soon as practicable following review and approval by the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands, which could occur in early 2009. The reincorporation would be achieved by merging Noble Corporation, the current Cayman Islands parent company, with a newly formed Cayman Islands subsidiary of the new Swiss parent company.
Noble Corporation’s Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, David W. Williamssaid, “After careful consideration, our Board of Directors has concluded that a change of place of incorporation to Switzerland is in the best interests of Noble’s shareholders and customers. Switzerland’s stable commercial and financial environment and its well-established tax regime will help us to maintain our competitive position in the global marketplace.”
Upon completion of the transaction, the Noble parent company will continue to be subject to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reporting requirements, and its shares will be listed exclusively on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “NE”, the Company’s current trading symbol.
“At this point, we are continuing to evaluate whether relocating our corporate headquarters to Switzerland would be in Noble’s best interest and the best interests of our shareholders,” added Williams. “If we conclude that relocation is appropriate, we could begin to move personnel at any time, either before or after we conclude the transaction.”
Full details of the transactions, and the associated benefits and risks, will be provided in the Company’s proxy statement with respect to the shareholders’ meeting.
Noble is a leading offshore drilling contractor for the oil and gas industry. Noble performs, through its subsidiaries, contract drilling services with a fleet of 63 offshore drilling units (including five rigs currently under construction) located worldwide, including in the Middle East, India, the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, Mexico, the North Sea, Brazil, and West Africa. Noble’s ordinary shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “NE”.
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In 1988, it gained a controlling stake in The First Boston Corporation and in 1993, Credit Suisse Group bought Schweizerische Volksbank (English: People’s Bank of Switzerland). In 1996 the two retail banks were merged and renamed Credit Suisse.
Under the Swiss Code, if Noble-Switzerland’s general reserves amount to less than 20% of the aggregate par value of Noble-Switzerland’s registered capital, then at least 5% of Noble-Switzerland’s annual profit must be retained as general reserves. The Swiss Code and Noble-Switzerland’s articles of association permit Noble-Switzerland to accrue additional general reserves. In addition, Noble-Switzerland is required to create a special reserve on its stand-alone annual statutory balance sheet in the amount of the purchase price of registered shares it or any of its subsidiaries repurchases, which amount may not be used for dividends or subsequent repurchases.
Swiss companies generally must maintain a separate stand-alone “statutory” balance sheet for the purpose of, among other things, determining the amounts available for the return of capital to shareholders, including by way of a distribution of dividends. Noble-Switzerland’s auditor must confirm that a dividend proposal made to shareholders conforms with the requirements of the Swiss Code and Noble-Switzerland’s articles of association. Dividends are due and payable upon the shareholders having passed a resolution approving the payment subject
GORDON T. HALL
Director since 2009
Mr. Hall serves as Chairman of the Board of Exterran Holdings, Inc., a natural gas compression and production services company. He previously served as Chairman of the Board of Hanover Compressor Company from May 2005 until its merger with Universal Compression Holdings, Inc. to create Exterran in August 2007. Mr. Hall retired as Managing Director from Credit Suisse First Boston, a brokerage services and investment banking firm, where he was employed from 1987 through 2002. While at Credit Suisse First Boston, Mr. Hall served as Senior Oil Field Services Analyst and Co-Head of the Global Energy Group. Mr. Hall has not held a principal employment since leaving his position with Credit Suisse First Boston
JON A. MARSHALL
Director since 2009
Mr. Marshall served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Transocean Inc. from November 2007 to May 2008, and immediately prior to that served as Chief Executive Officer of GlobalSantaFe Corporation from May 2003 until November 2007, when GlobalSantaFe merged with Transocean. Transocean is an offshore drilling contractor. Mr. Marshall has not held a principal employment since leaving his position with Transocean. Mr. Marshall also serves as a director of two nonprofit organizations.
Saturday’s events also brought low the career of one of Switzerland’s most prominent business executives. Mr. Grübel, a former Credit Suisse Group chief executive, came out of retirement in February 2009 to help turn around UBS in the wake of the credit losses it suffered during the financial crisis. At UBS, Mr. Grübel sought to win back client confidence for a bank that was among the hardest hit by the financial crisis.
He also had to cope with a bruising battle with U.S. authorities over allegations that UBS bankers helped Americans avoid taxes. UBS admitted wrongdoing as part of a sweeping settlement.
Mr. Grübel, 67, had been expected to unveil a major restructuring of UBS’s investment bank at a meeting with investors on Nov. 17. He has for some time been expected to move toward retirement, but he consistently said he intended to see his restructuring plan through to completion and wanted to leave UBS on a steady course. Few thought he would remain beyond the end of his reorganization plan, which was slated to end around 2013.
All of those plans were thrown in disarray 10 days ago when UBS disclosed that a London-based equity trader at its investment bank generated $2.3 billion in losses this summer through what it called unauthorized trades. People familiar with the situation say 31-year-old Kweku Adoboli is that trader.
U.K. authorities have charged Mr. Adoboli with fraud and false accounting, alleging that his crimes dated back to 2008; UBS has said the unauthorized trades occurred over the last several months.
In court on Thursday, Mr. Adoboli’s lawyer, Patrick Gibbs, said his client was “sorry beyond words.” He added that Mr. Adoboli had gone to UBS “and told them what he had done, and stands now appalled at the scale of the consequences of his disastrous miscalculations.” Mr. Gibbs didn’t request that his client be released on bail, so Mr. Adoboli remains in custody. The next hearing is scheduled for Oct. 20.
Global leaders struggle to calm recession fears
By GABRIELE STEINHAUSER, Associated Press – 2 hours ago
WASHINGTON (AP) — The world’s major economic powers are pledging to launch a bold effort to deal with a chronic slowdown in growth and a European debt crisis threatening to push the global economy into another recession. But it was unclear whether their strong words would be backed up by equally strong actions.
The statement by the Group of 20 major economies was issued late Thursday and pledged that the countries, which represent 85 percent of the global economy, would do what was necessary to restore financial stability and clam financial markets which had plunged on Thursday over renewed fears of a global downturn.
The finance officials of traditional economic powers such as the United States, Japan and Germany and major emerging nations such as China, Brazil and India were seeking to demonstrate strong resolve in the hope that it will calm jitters that had sent financial markets down sharply. The United States was represented in the discussions by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke.
“We are taking strong actions to maintain financial stability, restore confidence and support growth,” the G-20 joint statement said. “We commit to take all actions to preserve the stability of banking systems and financial markets as required.”
The G-20 group had not been scheduled to issue a statement after their working dinner but the turmoil on Thursday in global markets resulted in a change in plans. The group issued a one-page document that they hoped would demonstrate sufficient resolve.
The statement did little to reassure anxious investors. European markets showed modest losses on Friday while Wall Street was set to open slightly higher. In Asia, traders continued to dump stocks amid growing fears of a new global recession.
French Finance Minister Francoise Baroin told reporters the statement represented a “strong global” response to what he called a “very serious situation.”
The statement was issued in advance of the start Friday of the annual meetings of the 187-nation International Monetary Fund and its sister lending organization, the World Bank. The discussions, which will wrap up on Saturday, have been dominated by the European debt crisis.
A senior U.S. Treasury official who briefed reporters on condition of anonymity to discuss the closed-door discussions said that all the G-20 countries felt there was a sense of urgency to take strong actions to deal with the financial market turmoil.
By the early 2000s, Noble Drilling changed its name to Noble Corporation as a result of its change in domicile from the United States to the Cayman Islands.
On December 19, 2008, Noble, incorporated in the Cayman Islands and operated from Sugar Land, Texas, announced plans to reincorporate in Switzerland.
In March 2009, Noble Corporation redomesticated to Switzerland. At that time it was removed from the S&P500 Index.