Blanche Lindo Blackwell, 104, mistress of Sir Ian Fleming (the original Bond Girl?)
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That Derek
2017-08-10 18:03:58 UTC
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Blanche Blackwell, Ian Fleming's mistress – obituary

10 August 2017 • 6:06pm

Blanche Blackwell, who has died aged 104, was the mother of the record mogul Chris Blackwell, the mistress of Ian Fleming and one of the last survivors from the age when some 20 families ran Jamaica.

Her family, the Lindos, were Sephardic Jews from Portugal who had arrived in Jamaica in 1743 to make their money from sugar, rum, coconuts and cattle. Their finances were said to have been weakened by a large loan to Napoleon, which was never repaid, and by the early 20th century Blanche’s eldest uncle had been forced to depart for Costa Rica, where he struck lucky growing bananas and sent for his seven brothers, including Blanche’s father.

Blanche was born there on December 9 1912. When their wealth was restored, most of the family returned to Jamaica, where they bought and ran the island’s leading rum manufacturer, J Wray and Nephew, until 1957.

Strong, petite and full of joie de vivre, Blanche...

[My apologies. The London Telegraph has a pay-wall and have, thus, cut me off from access to the rest of the obit ...]
Bryan Styble
2017-08-11 07:52:59 UTC
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This is a HUGE one, Derek, at least for little ol' semi-literate me, as I:

(1) not only hadn't read or heard she had sadly expired; but
(2) my ever-befuddled mind had never retained her name even though I surely ran across it maybe dozens of times since the mid-60s; inasmuch as
(3) I have read dozens of magazine, book or newspaper accounts of Fleming's naval espionage (and Bond-light) career; and
(4) starting at age 11 over two years, mentally devoured every one* of the Fleming's** sex-filled Bond novels, most of which were way over my young blond [not blonde!] head anyway, as I in those days naively didn't even know the term "making love" referred to anything further than "making out".

* Every sentence in every Fleming-penned** novel at least once***.
** Fleming's estate foolishly, recklessly and greedily licensed the most famous literary character at least since Scarlett O'Hara to a continuing series of novelists, starting with Kingsley Amis under some forgettable pen name with "Colonel Sun", and I'm STILL utterly ashamed I ever trifled with even a paragraph of it, much less completely finishing it at a length maybe three times the longest REAL Bond book.
*** The superb "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" twice actually, and by FAR the most cleverly-crafted narrative of the entire series, "You Only Live Twice"**** no fewer than five times.
**** Which, for all those folks so dazzled by Hollywood that they perhaps stop by their local library pretty much only to donate old, often nearly-valueless (and maybe unread=?) books or to vote, maybe*****--which they probably don't do anyway*****--was a 1971 Christmastime cinematic misfire which exhibited precisely ZERO in common with the sometimes-utterly-brilliant namesake-novel, aside from the title, Japanese locale, and a few supporting character names. Granted, It DID boast a terrific Nancy Sinatra [Jr.!] title tune that was a highlight of her career******* so far, but it could still never compensate for the film's juvenile and preposterous comic-relief gay assassin duo, the silly lesbo bounding-and-kicking chick--or chicks maybe?, I forget, thank G-d--and by far the lamest Blofeld ever, Donald Pleasance.
***** Which, of course, is just fine and dandy indeed with most of us who not only show up quadrennially on the first Tuesday AFTER the first Monday in November******, but also know the names of, say, the longest-serving Justice on the federal Supreme bench and the Minority Leader of the federal Senate, and the PROFOUND differences between the U.S. Treasurer and the Secretary of the Treasury, or even what the adverb quadrennially means [!].
****** As opposed to what maybe 97 percent of us civics buffs--the only people who care about this, seemingly--quite positively and quite ERRONEOUSLY believe is instead simply the first Tuesday in November.
******* Which is STILL vocally going pretty strong, as my all-time fave NSJr. track is not the iconic "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'", nor the definitive version everywhere of the standard "Jackson" with duet partner (and her producer!) Lee Hazelwood, nor the touching and familially-harmonic "Something Stupid", or even the syrupy but aurally-oh-so-yummy "Sugar Town", but instead the infrequently-heard "Burning Down the Spark", recorded a few years into this millennium (and of course readily YouTube available).
Bryan Styble
2017-08-11 08:26:47 UTC
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Yikes! I gotta cease sculpting these asterisk-laiden expositions...at least whilst concluding a 36-hours-and-counting sleepless-only-because-my-temporary-workload-affords-nary-a-moment-for-shuteye interlude!

As anyone probably beyond the age of, oh, say, 11 years, noticed IMMEDIATELY, my fatigue-addled mind boneheadedly conflated two of the worst* Bond films. I shall endeavor to sort them out:

YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE: great NSJr. tune; Japan locale; virtually zero in common with novel other than title; Christmastime 1967 release; Pleasance spectacularly miscast as Blofeld; Charles Gray as a Tokyo-based Bond ally.

DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER: dumb idea of a gay assassin duo; ridiculous bounding lesbian(s?); 1971 Christmastime release; Charles Gray as a so-so Blofeld [and thus confusing dimwits like Styble by appearing in radically-different roles in nearly-consecutative Bond flicks).

A thousand apologies, my ever-suffering readers!

* "Moonraker" EASILY takes THAT dubious cake...and I ain't referring to one cryptically left out in a rainfall in mid-Wilshire's [corncob-pipe-clenching Douglas] McCarthur Park, while posterity REMAINS mystified as to why Richard Harris and/or legendary tunesmith Jimmy Webb at least once added an erroneous apostrophe and a superfluous S.