Monday, June 10, 2013

Miss Helen's Birthday!


On an annual basis more or less, Miss Helen's birthday rolls around.

But she, not being like most, doesn't just have a birth day - she has a birth month.

And during this month there's all kinds of celebrations.

Big parties.

Small parties.

Luncheons at Bergdorf's in New York.

And quiet birthday dinners with intimate friends.

Do you remember John?

I brought him up in a post entitled  "A Hamburger for Thanksgiving" not so long ago.

Well John, being rich and totally idle, has plunked down in Washington to spend this entire birthday month with Miss Helen. (Not that I'm jealous or anything like that.)

On one quiet evening during all the hoopla, they settled down with a bottle of champagne and went about reciting their favorite quotes from Oscar Wilde and Dorothy Parker.

Miss Helen was kind enough to email some of the slightly-mangled versions they came up with, and there's one I want to share with you tonight.

It's one of my favorite Parker quotes, and I'm sure you've already heard it. But nonetheless, it's always good for a much needed laugh, anytime, anywhere.

I'm quoting from my own memory, by the way, which I'm sure will be closer to the original than some champagne-driven interpretation. (No offense, John.)

Said the lovely Miss Parker:

"I love a good martini,
     Two at the most.
          With three I'm under the table.
               With four I'm under my host."

Good night,



  1. Close Andrew. But I believe the actual quote is "I like to have a martini, two at the very most. After three I'm under the table, after four I'm under my host."

    Love your stories and info. Laura

    1. Thanks for the correction, Laura. Apparently you're the most sober one of all of us.

      Thanks for stopping by. And do feel free to correct me anytime.


  2. Thanks for answering back Andrew. If you don't mind my asking, what is your all time favorite Dorothy Parker quote? Laura

    1. My favorite Dorothy Parker quote? The one that really knocks me out every time is:

      "If you can't say something nice about someone, then come sit by me."

      But if I'm not mistaken, historians say Parker herself was quoting Alice Roosevelt Longworth, the somewhat socially-controversial daughter of President Theodore Roosevelt.


  3. Mr. Williams, I LOVE Dorothy Parker, and I LOVE your blog and your link to Edith Piaf. I'm so glad to find your blog. Andrea

    1. You're very kind to say such nice things, Andrea. But please...Mr. Williams is my father. Just call me Mr. Andrew.

      Do stop by anytime.

    2. OK so Mr. Andrew it is! Thank you for writing back to me. I hope you keep writing for a long long time, I've learned so much already. My little group especially enjoyed your essays on invitations, regrets and stationery. Andrea

    3. Thanks again Andrea. I'm so happy to think there's a kernel of knowledge in the posts I'm writing.