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Notable New     Yorkers
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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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You”. . ."Three words that. . . . .” Do you remember that song?




It was in Little Jesse James, which was a musical on Broadway.

Then Marian Spitzer went to Hollywood, where she and Harlan became very successful screen writers. Marian turned very left and got mixed up in all of the movements on the left that shook Hollywood before the War.

We kept in touch. She had a friend out in Hollywood named Mary Astor, one of the three beautiful girls who were born in Piqua, Ohio and lived within two blocks of each other. One of them was Mary Astor. Another one was Neysa McMein, who became quite a famous artist and lady-about-town. The third one was Ruth Gardner, who married Fleischman and ended up owning most of The New Yorker magazine. Three little girls from Piqua!.. It's an intriguing story about how all three of them made good in various ways.

Mary Astor was not a top star, but she was quite beautiful. Everybody knew her name. She had never been to New York. She was a great friend of Marian Spitzer so, when she said that she was coming to New York, Marian gave her two letters of introduction--one to George S. Kaufman and one to Bennett Cerf. What she told Mary Astor was, was that George Kaufman was too old for her but was a very

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