When I was a little girl there were about five things that I loved more than anything else in the world. (Family doesn’t count, you can’t compare them to The Monkees or Bobby Sherman…so yes, there’s two of the five.) The other three were my teddy bear (Theodore), Archie comic books (OLD SCHOOL ARCHIE COMIC BOOKS MIND YOU!), and last but not least, my Mrs. Beasley doll.
If you’re between the age of say, 48 and 99, and you don’t remember who Mrs. Beasley is, then you inexplicitly must have never watched a lovely little television show called ‘Family Affair’ (and why??? WHY???). Of course if you DO know who Mrs. Beasley is (a yellow-haired, bespectacled, blue and white polka-dotted dress-wearing doll that gives practical advice), then you must also know a beautiful young lady from ‘Family Affair’ by the name of “Sissy”, played to absolute perfection by the very wonderful (and eternally “groovy”) actress, Kathy Garver.
When I was asked to write about Ms. Garver, who is the proud author of a brand new book titled, Surviving Cissy: My Family Affair of Life in Hollywood, I have to say that it was pretty much a mind-blowing experience. I’m a true child of the 60’s and 70’s. I’m a television aficionado, (some people might use a different word, like “junkie”) and quite frankly the thought of ever getting to theoretically break bread with “Cissy” had me walking on Cloud Nine for days. To put it in perspective, imagine if you were a Star Wars fan and you got to interview Hans Solo. Interviewing “Sissy” is that epic.
Since the interview was conducted via email, I had to come up with questions that would not only show you, the reader, how remarkable Ms. Garver is, but I also didn’t want to bore her in any way (this incredible woman was in The Ten Commandments, for goodness sakes! Heston! DeMille!! The Red Sea!!). I can’t think of another book in the past few years that I’ve looked more forward to reading (besides the superb book my own “Cissy” wrote, ‘What Women Really Want’). And so without further adieu, I give you Ms. Kathy Garver.
LB: What is your best childhood memory?
Kathy Garver: My best childhood memory is when I was perched on a papier maiche mountain at Paramount studios when the Red Sea closed and water splashed all around while shooting the epic film The Ten Commandments. I had been rescued on another mountain earlier by Charlton Heston as Moses and the excitement of people and animals hurrying to get through the sandy soil remains steadfastly in my memory today.
LB: What do you feel most proud of?
Kathy Garver: I am most proud of my son (Reid Garver Travis) as I see him growing strongly in his beliefs and confidence each day. He is now 24.
LB: What was one of your most defining moments in life?
Kathy Garver: One of the most defining moments in my life was when my husband (David Travis) was poisoned by potassium minerals and literally died twice of cardiac arrest. Praying and gathering the good wishes and intents of my friends I know helped him survive. The experience reminded me how precious life is and how we must appreciate and utilize every day. It also was one of the reasons I was inspired to finish my new book Surviving Cissy: My Family Affair of Life in Hollywood. I have learned a lot of lessons in my journey of life.
LB: If you were President, what is the first thing you would do?
Kathy Garver: Close the borders.
LB: How does the world perceive America these days?
Kathy Garver: I believe the world perceives America as weak – a plaything easily manipulated. America is still a young country compared to others. The others have had decades to develop ways to protect their territories, assets and means to control others. America is still seeking to strengthen her own foundation while other factors try their best to undermine that foundation.
LB: Do politics help our society or hinder it?
Kathy Garver: Politics are inevitable. But the way they are spun todays makes a fog for the populace. We have freedom of speech but it is marred by too many laws and too much political correctness. Instead of solving problems it creates divisiveness, Because of the success of advertising where focus groups are conducted to choose words to sell a particular product, those in power think by changing a word they change the situation. They don’t. They just create a miasma of confusion which shrouds the issues and does not reach to the root of the real problems in our society. So Hinder is my choice as our present politics do not allow for transparency no matter how loud that behavior is trumpeted.
LB: Who is a character from a TV show or a book that you’ve always resonated with?
Kathy Garver: I like the character of ‘Dr. Temperance Brennan’ on the TV show Bones. I was originally an anthropology major at UCLA and I am attracted to her specialty of forensics anthropology. I resonant with the way she perseveres, is her own woman and solves the mystery of the bones presented. And are we not always seeking to solve the mystery of life?
So there you go, just a bit about this truly extraordinary woman. She was certainly someone I aspired to be like as a little girl, and who I still aspire to be like today.
Do yourself a favor and buy Kathy Garver’s book, Surviving Cissy: My Family Affair of Life in Hollywood, which is available NOW! The book can be ordered on Amazon.com by clicking HERE, and you can order a personal, signed edition of it at Kathy’s website, www.kathygarver.com” target=”_blank”>www.kathygarver.com, by clicking HERE.