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Zsa Zsa Gabor Was Famous, And That’s Why We Loved Her, Dahling

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I’m not sure why Zsa Zsa Gabor was famous.

Of course it’s because she was an actress, but I can’t think of many acting roles she did.

Her sister Eva I knew did Green Acres, but Zsa Zsa?

She was always, well…Zsa, dahling.

Through her thick and sultry accent she always had opinions, and she could always come up with quotable quips.

On her multiple marriages:

            I am a marvelous housekeeper. Every time I leave a man, I keep his house.

            How many husbands have I had? You mean apart from my own?

A man in love is incomplete until he has married. Then he’s finished.

            On jewelry:

I never hated a man enough to give him his diamonds back.

            On her trademark endearment “dahling”:

I don’t remember anybody’s name. How do you think the “dahling” thing got started?

Gabor’s life was not easy.

She had married nine times, and had one child, Francesca, with second husband, the hotelier Conrad Hilton. She would later write that Francesca was conceived when Hilton raped her.

Her third husband George Sanders cheated on her with Doris Duke, and she had an affair with polo player Porfirio Rubirosa. She kept marrying husband after husband, and acting in B movies.

God knows, there were better actresses than her.

So what made Zsa Zsa so special…so Zsa Zsa?

It’s because she knew what she liked. And she liked being famous.

We always hear famous people complain about being famous and what a chore it is, and how they would love their anonymity back, blah, blah, blah.  But Zsa Zsa didn’t want to be anonymous. She loved being famous! She loved her white furs and her diamonds!

Instead of shirking away from fame, she gave it a big old hug, called it dahling, and made sure she never went away from the the spotlight. The Kardashians had nothing on Zsa Zsa when it came to being famous for God knows what.

But sometimes the spotlight wasn’t so great: In 1989 during a dispute with a police officer over a traffic violation, she slapped him. This resulted in a trial where she demonstrated how she slapped him. The worst part was she had to admit she was seventy-three years old while she was under oath. She told the officer she was fifty-nine. She was sentenced to three days in jail. However, she proved to be a good sport about it, spoofing the arrest in The Naked Gun Two and a Half.

Zsa Zsa’s life hadn’t been easy in her last years: in 2002 she had a car accident that left her partially paralyzed. She had several strokes and had to have a hip replacement. In 2007 her last husband Frédéric Prinz von Anhalt admitted he had an affair with centerfold/reality star Anna Nicole Smith and was possibly the father of her daughter (though DNA results proved that claim false) and Francesca Hilton died of a stroke in January 2015.

Because of Zsa Zsa’s fragile health, she was never told about her only child’s death. Her sisters Magda and Eva died before her as well.

When news of Zsa Zsa’s death broke, it wasn’t a shock. She had been ill for so long. Yet what surprised me was not only was she a trending Twitter topic, her death became the top story of Sunday night. In this perverse way I enjoyed it simply because of this fact: For a short while, Donald Trump’s tweets and the Russian hacking wasn’t top news.

It was like Zsa Zsa though, “All right, it’s time for me to go. But I’m going to make sure I knock that dreadful Trump man out of the spotlight for a little while.”

Thanks for the respite, Zsa Zsa.

We needed it.