Love. Requited. Unrequited. Mashed up and confused and full of surprises. Garland films throughout her career featured adolescent mush and earnest young adult struggles and absolutely couldn’t-be-more-grown-up realizations of the fact that love cannot solve all problems. And yet you keep on singing. And loving.
Lesson 14: Rich kids can get smitten too.
“Did anyone ever tell you you had a face like a two-week vacation. With pay? Did anyone ever tell you that you have a nose cute enough to write a song about? Did anyone ever tell you that whenever a girl like you starts talking to a fellow like me it means only one thing – that you’re falling madly in love with him? Did anyone ever tell you that a fellow in my state of mind is apt to kiss a girl in your state of mind?”
Girl Crazy (1943), Danny Churchill, Jr. to Ginger Gray
Lesson 15. Love unrequited is a raving crazy-making mess at any age.
“It’s way down deep inside me. He’s wrong and I love him. He’s right and I love him. It’s no good. Gee, what do you do when you love somebody so much … they don’t even know you’re around.”
For Me And My Gal (1942). Jo Hayden to Jimmy Metcalfe (about Harry Palmer)
Lesson 16. Love always makes sense but the rest of life may not.
Jenny: David, you wouldn’t cheat me, would you? You wouldn’t be telling me …
David: Darling, I wouldn’t cheat you.
Jenny: You wouldn’t say you love me if you didn’t?
David: I wouldn’t say I love you if I didn’t.
Jenny: Then tell me again..
David: No I wouldn’t darling.
Jenny: Please tell me again. Please, once more.
David: I’ll tell you as often as you want me to. I’ve always loved you.
Jenny: That’s where it ends, isn’t it?
David: That’s where it ends. We were the right people that met at the wrong moment with all the right ideals .. We were just too strong ever to give up everything for each other.
Jenny: We just didn’t fit.
David: We fitted. The rest didn’t.
Jenny: That doesn’t make much sense.
David: The loving does.
Jenny: The loving does. The loving always does.
I Could Go On Singing (1963). Jenny Bowman and David Donne
© Martha Wade Steketee (November 26, 2009)