I couldn’t help myself. Whenever a woman stepped onto the stage at the Oscar ceremony last night, I’d silently critique how she looked. Jennifer Lopez, picture perfect in a metallic dress. What a body and face! Tina Fey looking top heavy in a cheesy strapless gown with pronounced bodice. Sarah Paulson in a puffy hot pink number that exposed her midriff and made her look like a belly dancer.
But when Helen Mirren, Bette Midler and Barbra Streisand came to the mic, I focused on their faces, and thought 70-something never looked so good.
Helen and Bette will turn 74 during the second half of this year, and Barbra will be 77 in April. It seems as if each of them is happy in her own skin, whether or not she had “work” done on it. Besides their superb talents and wildly successful careers, Barbra and Helen have been married for 20 years; Bette for 35. In the world of celebrities, those are mighty big numbers. What’s more, we never read about them in the gossip columns.
It would be great fun to interview the three of them together. I’ve loved Barbra and Bette since the 1960s, and will never forget seeing the “Divine Miss M” perform on New Year’s Eve at Reno Sweeney, a popular New York cabaret, before she became an uber-celeb. I was bewitched watching Barbra during her first TV special, “My Name is Barbra,” in 1965. I wanted to be her! I played her albums so often in the 1990s that the man I was with at the time referred to her as “my girlfriend.” I don’t remember seeing Helen’s early films, but I became a fan once I saw her in the 2006 movie, “The Queen.”
Continuing to work and get resounding receptions, these three women inspire me, especially their obvious and boundless passion. Passion looks good on everyone!