A trip to see ‘The Help’

| August 17, 2011

English Speaking Union President Louise Cecil invited her board members plus friends and yours truly to see “The Help” on opening night Thursday at Stonybrook Theater.

Ann Lyons, Louise Cecil and Kathleen Lyons on opening night for “The Help.”

Ann Lyons, Louise Cecil and Kathleen Lyons on opening night for “The Help.”

“My prime reason to see it reflects on my friendship with Sarah Green,” Louise said.
According to the movie’s tagline: “ ‘The Help’  follows three very different, extraordinary women in Mississippi during the 1960s,  who build an unlikely friendship around a secret writing project that breaks societal rules and puts them all at risk.”

Louise met Sarah working for a mutual friend, and later Sarah also worked in her costume shop and helped with her annual Christmas parties.

Being a divorced mother of three, Louise always allowed the children to spend holidays with their father, freeing her to accept invitations to join Sarah and her family for some of the finest cooking in town.

Sarah Green with the Commodores.

Sarah Green with a Commodore.

Louise also was invited to attend Sarah’s family reunions where she tossed horseshoes with the men and promptly defeated them. They demanded a rematch.

Always thinking of how she could do things for Sarah, Louise later drove her to see the Commodores at the Executive Inn in Owensboro. Here are some photos of Sarah with each of the Commodores.

At “The Help,” from left, front row: Louise Cecil, Ruth Devine, Lucie Blodgett and Joyce Jennings; middle: Carolyn Diener and Carlita Canfield; back: Andy Perry, John Sistarenik, Nancy Fitch, Cindy Moxley and Tom Diener.

At “The Help,” from left, front row: Louise Cecil, Ruth Devine, Lucie Blodgett and Joyce Jennings; middle: Carolyn Diener and Carlita Canfield; back: Andy Perry, John Sistarenik, Nancy Fitch, Cindy Moxley and Tom Diener.

Sarah proudly shows them to her friends and family and has wonderful memories of that trip.
Sarah could not attend the movie because she was not feeling well, but she promised to see it with Louise soon.

Louise (and the whole audience clapping and cheering) felt the chocolate pie scene was the highlight of the movie.

However, Louise came away glad she doesn’t like to eat chocolate pie.

Mississippi home
Brookhaven, Miss., is my hometown. It is 60 miles south of Jackson.

My mother’s maid when I was born was Bettie Bee Brown, who made me a dress out of a flour sack printed with tiny roses, let me cut out cookies with a thimble for my Shirley Temple doll and took me (for my sixth birthday) out to a field where a barnstorming pilot named Foxy Kent took us on our first airplane ride.

I remember peeping through a dime-size hole in the metal floor and seeing tiny cotton fields, pine trees and little houses below.

Years later, Bettie Bee made a fortune in Chicago after patenting an X-ray machine.

I looked her up and took her to tea in the brand new Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Chicago.

She named her son William Henry Becker Brown Jr. (after my father). He drove me to the airport to catch a flight for Texas.

I left Old Miss and graduated from Missouri Journalism School in 1950.

My first job was reporting for the Jackson Daily News, which was portrayed in “The Help” as the Jackson Daily Journal.

The only difference was my editor did not know how to dance a comic jig as the editor in “The Help” did.

My first assignment was the Nelson Eddy fan club meeting.

“Mr. Eddy,” I asked after his talk to the old ladies. “Do you eat fried chick with your hands?”

“Yes, my mother is from Atlanta, and we ate fried chicken with our hands,” he said.

“Is movie star kissing any different,” I went on, “from well, just kissing?”

He answered that by giving me the most tender passionate kiss I have ever had in my life.

I wrote a two-inch story beginning, “I was kissed by Nelson Eddy” printed in bold type on the front page of the Daily News, and after that, everybody in town knew my name.

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Category: Columns, The Social Side

About the Author (Author Profile)

Lucie Blodgett
Always out and about at happenings around town, Lucie Blodgett has been writing a weekly column for The Voice-Tribune for more than two decades.

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