"I'd had several years of on-the-road training, so I fully accepted that women would always be part of the deal with Frank. Not only was he sexy, powerful, and charismatic but much of his charm was his flirtatiousness, and his female fans expected nothing less."
I did quite enjoy reading "Lady Blue Eyes", written by Barbara Sinatra describing her "life with Frank."
I must caution that the hand of the ghost writer was all over that book.
I have, from time to time, been a ghost writer, and I've a clue how it works. The task begins with the person for whom the ghost writing is being done sitting down and going over what is the overall goal of the book, how the "writer" wants to reader to perceive the book, what morals or conclusions the ghost writer should weave and detail in the book.
Barbara Sinatra's ghost writer had quite the task. And, indeed, Barbara's ghost writer almost succeeded in convincing the reader that Barbara was one happening take-charge woman who adored and coddled her husband Frank. That same ghost writer almost succeeded in convincing the reader that Frank Sinatra was an even-tempered lovely sort of fellow who was the charm of the planet.
But let us begin by stating that Barbara Sinatra did love her husband Frank and that love was evident in the writing and sentiments expressed, never mind the ghost writer.
Still and so, a savvy reader saw right through any concept that Barbara Sinatra was any kind of independent woman capable of bringing home the bacon and frying it up in a pan.
The dumbest of readers could see through any brushing aside of Frank Sinatra's bad behavior as just a slight personality flaw. Frank Sinatra was a man I wouldn't have given the time of day to, I don't care how much money he had. Let me insert right here that I am quite sure that Frank Sinatra would never have given me the time of day so this makes us even.
For Barbara Sinatra is a beautiful woman. Yes, drop dead gorgeous, make no mistake. Men gaze at her and fall for her beauty from the start.
Barbara, of course, knew this, and hey, a woman using God's gifts to create a right nice life for herself, well there's nothing wrong with this.
Barbara was born in the midwest, into a most ordinary family. I suspect she was well aware of her beauty since a young lady. From the start she entered into glamorous occupations, beginning with modeling on to having her own modeling school. She met the right people and after a short marriage that produced her only son, Barbara Sinatra was soon a showgirl in Las Vegas with any number of male suitors after her affections.
She married Zeppo Marx, yes of the Marx Brothers. Barbara describes her marriage to Zeppo, how he did not much care for her son, how she felt unhappiness often due to his selfish ways, how she was smitten with their neighbor, Frank Sinatra, over many years before she finally abandoned Zeppo for the greener pastures of Frank Sinatra.
I can hear the ghost writer saying how they should somehow gloss over the very bad behavior of Frank Sinatra. Because Frank Sinatra was really a selfish guy who didn't give much thought to the wants and needs of those around him.
Oh he participated in many charity fundraisers over the years, to his credit I must suppose but let's not pretend that these sorts of things tend to also promote the career of one so "charitable".
Barbara recounts how Frank's entire entourage would be all dressed, packed and ready to board and airplane to an overseas concert locale. Frank would show up at the last minute and would, poof, simply turn around, with no explanation to anyone, and walk away. "I'm not doing this," he'd mumble, leaving those who'd arranged their personal lives for the trip, the audience clutching tickets awaiting the concert of their singing hero, even his wife and close friends, all disoriented, disappointed and disillusioned.
"We're going to have to make this sound as if Frank did this sort of thing for some sort of noble reason," I can hear the ghost writer saying. "We need to keep Frank's personality quirks in a positive light if this book is going to achieve your goal of convincing the world that Frank was an almost perfect husband with you his lucky wife."
So Barbara explains to the reader that Frank often walked away from these sort of commitments with no warning because of sudden last minute events that had him worried that he couldn't give his fans the type of concert that they were expecting.
Excuse my language.
There were enough examples of this type of bad behavior in this book and again, the ghost writer did a heck of a job glossing over it, no doubt prompting Barbara toward different endings to keep the tone of the life of the Sinatras always positive.
I mean how would sales of Frank's songs remain brisk if everyone were to see what a selfish little twerp the man was?
Not that Barbara was the perfect loving spouse she'd like the world to believe. Oh I think towards the end of Frank's life she was very protective of him, I do believe that she dearly loved him. He gave her a good life and when he wasn't being an asshole he often bought her jewelry. Women without fantastically rich husbands often leave their nasty spouses but a ruby necklace can erase all manner of ills.
I never much cared for Frank's music and never thought he was any great singer. He was okay….just that, by me….okay.
I'd grown up enough during his era and I know that Frank Sinatra's life was not a restful, peaceful affair. His infamous "rat pack" was the stuff of notoriety, his marriages were just plain weird, the rumors of his mob affiliation were more, I suspect, than Barbara Sinatra would have us believe.
Finally, Barbara does mention Frank's son, Frank Jr. She NEVER mentions either Nancy Sinatra Jr or Tina Sinatra. Only after Frank's death does she mention the existence of a grandchild. The reader would never know, based on Barbara Sinatra's version of events, that Frank had any daughters and only of the existence of but one grandchild.
Isn't that odder than all get out?