Les’t Face It—I’m Different!
I once hit a woman on the head. I did it because she deserved it. Look, I’m strong and I know I can hit any woman I want, any time I want. I usually don’t hit them because I don’t feel I should take advantage of the weaker sex. But I had to hit this particular dame because she was testing me—you know, she was just trying to see how far she could push me. Well, I showed her! After I smacked her, she became very nice. She turned into a real kitten, all soft and delicate. She was like somebody strong who suddenly had her vitamins taken away and whamo, she suffered a relapse. Well, if she’d been soft and feminine in the beginning, I wouldn’t have had to hit her.
“I was sorry I did it because I don’t approve of hitting somebody weaker than I am—but this girl deserved it. She should have realized she was a girl, and she should not have provoked me.
“I feel strongly on the subject of unfeminine women. I hate them.
“Girls who don’t like a strong man usually stay away from me. They sense my strength and avoid me. It’s better that way. I don’t want to waste my time with them, and they’d be wasting their time on me.
“Let’s face it, I’m different! Most of the girls who like me do so because I am different. I’m strong and unbending. Sometimes girls can’t quite believe this so they try to do battle with me. But it never works. They have to give in or I throw them out.
“I believe a woman wants to be dominated so I don’t shy away from the job. I am willing to do the dominating. In any relations with a girl, I’m the captain, I give the orders.
“I know I’ve been thought of as a cave man, and I’ve lost girls because of it. But, although this may sound immodest, when I lose a girl, it’s before our romance really starts. The girls who object to me because I’m strong are the kind of girls who prefer weak men. If that’s what a girl wants, that’s okay with me. And there sure are plenty of weak men around.
“When I’m with a girl, I run a dictatorship. She can talk all she wants, have all the opinions she wants and I’ll listen—but I make the decisions. I don’t treat a girl like a man, and I certainly don’t want her to treat me like anything but a complete man.
“Now when I go out with a woman, I don’t want her to forget that I’m taking her out, she’s not taking me out. I don’t want to see her money. I don’t believe in Dutch treat.
“I wear the pants’’
“On a date,I drive the car. I refuse to let my date drive me. Once when I went out with Inger Stevens, because my car was in the garage being fixed, we went in her car. I said I wanted to drive, and she said, ‘I never let anybody drive my car.’ Well, I told her, ‘Listen, I wear the pants in this car, and I’m driving!’
“She had to let me drive, or I’d have walked out.
“When I date, it is a private meeting between a man and a woman, it’s not a gimmick to be seen in glamour restaurants. I want to be alone with my date. I don’t want to share her and I don’t want to be stared at. That’s why I date in out of the way places that don’t have photographers and columnists hanging around.
“I’ve seen those phony show business dates—the kind where an actor and actress pretend to talk to each other while their eyes roam all over the place looking for more important people to contact. When they find somebody better, they’ll often ditch their date and go off with the new person. I don’t go for that stuff. When a girl’s with me, she’s got to be with me one hundred per cent.
“Since I travel constantly for ‘Route 66,’ I’m not in one place long enough to develop any big romances, but I have dated some of the girls who have guested on our series. That’s how I got to know Inger Stevens and Deborah Walley.
“I like Inger. She has a heart as big as the world. I’ve always had the feeling she needs me.
She the kind of a girl who haunts you. You get up in the morning thinking of her and how sweet she is. You want to do things for her. It’s a great feeling.
“Inger and I never went out to fancy places, we just sat around and talked. She’s the kind of girl who listens with her big, blue eyes. She gives me the feeling that she’s a sort of trusting child to whom you can say, ‘I have four legs,’ and she’d believe you.
“I took her to a party once, and a columnist saw us. He recognized her, but not me. He took her aside and asked, ‘Who’s that guy?’ I should have punched him in the nose, but I didn’t.
“I don’t see Inger much now because she got very sick and went back to Europe. I promised to write. But I didn’t. It’s my worst habit. I hate to write letters. I have no patience and I hate the sight of my handwriting. I have to write and rewrite a letter, and the more I rewrite it the mushier it becomes. So I keep tearing it up and rewriting it. I’m the kind who even rewrites a post card. I don’t type. In fact, I can’t do any of those secretarial things. I can’t stand them.
“I’ve phoned Inger. And you know, I’ve got another bad habit. When I phone somebody and they’re not in, I won’t leave my name.
“I called Inger at the 20th studio one day. The person answering the phone on the set asked, ‘Who’s calling?’ and I said, ‘Nobody.’ Then they asked, ‘Is this Rod?’ I got so mad I hung up.
“Inger called me when she heard what happened. She knew right away it must have been me who called. I was angry at the rumors she was dating Rod Taylor, and when she called I asked, ‘What’s this junk about Rod Taylor?’ And she said, ‘No, there’s nothing there.’
“Inger is always telling me to calm down. She says ‘You’re like a coil spring hitting its head against a stone wall with the energy of an atom bomb.’
“I didn’t actually propose”
“I’ve thought of marrying Inger, but I’m the kind of a guy who can’t propose marriage in the conventional way. When I was thinking seriously of marrying her, I told her, ’You’re the kind of a broad I’d like to marry!’ and she said, ‘You’re so romantic, George.’
“Of course, I made sure I didn’t actually propose. That’s because I have a lot of respect for marriage. When you marry and children ensue, it’s a serious business. I could walk away from a woman if I fell out of love with her, but I wouldn’t want to walk away from children.
“I’m wild and impulsive about a lot of things—but not marriage, it’s too serious. I’m basically a rebel, and I know it. For instance. I cannot live within the church, so I couldn’t marry a girl who’s strongly religious. I know she’d never be happy with me if I didn’t go along with her religion. I was once in love with a girl who was strong on religion, and I knew I couldn’t accept that. We broke up.
“Now let me tell you about Deborah Walley. I knew her before I met Inger. I met Debbie on the set of our show in Knab, Utah. It was the fourth segment we made. Debbie is French, with French upbringing and background. She’s a very sweet girl, with big blue eyes. (I guess I’m mad about bide eyes!) Wen Debbie is more of a girl, and Inger is more of a woman.
“When I went out with Debbie, I felt I was with a teenager. She bought a kookie black bird with a big beak, and kept it in the hotel. Later, when she had to go to Hawaii to make the ‘Gidget’ movie, she gave the bird away.
“I bought Debbie a ring, with a smoky white stone. It was an opal, I guess—I don’t know about these things. Anyway, the ring was too big for her finger, so I said. ‘Hold it, and I’ll have it cut down to your size when we get back to California.’ She wore it anyway, all taped to her finger.
When both Debbie and Inger were in Hollywood, I dated each of them without the other being aware of it. When Debbie left town, I wrote her a couple of post cards, and she wrote me. Since then I haven’t seen her; I’ve only talked to her on the phone.
“I’ll tell you something strange. Debbie is the only redhead I’ve ever gone with. As a rule, I don’t like redheads. In fact, many red-haired girls ask me why don’t I like redheads, and I tell them the truth, ‘I don’t like the smell.’
“Now I didn’t tell Debbie that ordinarily I don’t like the smell of redheads. It’s nothing personal. It’s just that there’s something about the skin type—the thin skin and the freckles—that I don’t like. The ones I really can’t stand are the orange-red type of redheads.
“I guess I have a nose that’s too sensitive. Why, I even smell food before I eat it. I like to smell a girl. (Now I can smell Inger any time.) I can tell the color of a girl’s hair with my eyes closed, just by smelling her. When I was visiting Italy, I could tell if a girl was Roman or Sicilian just by her smell.
“A girl’s shape is important, too. I like voluptuous girls, no thin ones. I’ve never liked girls who wear too much makeup. I like to see a girl’s skin. I like to smell her hair and touch it, too. I hate hair that feels as if a rat has made a nest there.
“I like to see girls without their girdles on. I like to admire the lines of a girl’s body. and I hate the girls who jam their body into a girdle so that they look like plaster of Paris.
“I’m a Girl Watcher from way back, and I’m annoyed when a girl resents a fellow who ogles her appreciatively. She should be flattered.
“Voice is important to me. When I meet a girl for the first time, I usually don’t heat the nitroduction (it’s another bad habit of mine!) because I’m too busy smelling the girl, sizing her up, studying her clothes, what she’s doing, how she’s moving and how she speaks.
“I’m bad at names, because I’m too busy doing too many things to listen to the name. I can know a girl very well and call her by the wrong name. I can remember every little detail about a girl—except her name.
“I don’t go for this coy boy-girl stuff. I believe in very frank, outspoken relationships. I want the girl to always be truthful with me. I can tell when a girl is keeping a secret from me. I have a way. I question her or suggest something. and then I watch her eyes. I catch her offguard—and find out what I want to know. A girl’s lips may lie, but her eyes tell the truth.
European vs. American girls
“When I went to Europe. I had a chance to study European girls. Abroad, the girls are more interested in knowing what a man is, caring for him and pleasing him. Foreign girls may work for a living, but they are not like American business girls. In Europe, their lives revolve around their men; in America, it’s their jobs.
“European men are different from American men, too. In Paris, the men stay two hours in the barber shop. They’re proud of their appearance. They’re regular peacocks! I think American men should pay more attention to grooming, too. They should not be afraid to strut like peacocks, and they ought to get away from gray, drab clothes.
“I strut. A man should be a man. The less he is a man, the more the girl takes on masculine traits. And that’s tragic.
“I love women, and I have a definite conception of my ‘Ideal Woman.’ She is aware of herself. She knows her feminine qualities. She is down to earth, fresh out of the soil, natural and outspoken. She’s a human being who knows where she can help. She’s sensitive to a man’s need. She can cook. She is willing to have seven or eight kids. She’ll make me feel she needs me.
“She will find me outspoken, definite, aggressive, fair. I’m vitally interested in people, and I’m keyed up all the time, and she’ll try to understand that. She’ll want to stay at home, although we might agree for her to continue working, if she wants, until the kids arrive.
“If she’s an actress, then we’ll have to reach an understanding on what to do with her career if we have children. She’ll be the kind of woman who won’t believe in divorce, and who will join me in making sacrifices for the sake of our kids.
“She’ll be the kind of girl who’ll be willing to talk out our differences frankly, openly, honestly.
“She should not be shocked when I propose, because it won’t be the conventional ‘Will you marry me?’ I’m the kind who’ll say, in an offbeat way, ‘Let’s go to the preacher,’ or ‘I need a cook and wash-woman.’
“And I will never smack her . . . unless she forgets she’s a woman and tries to act like a man!”
George Maharis can be seen on CBS-TV’s “Route 66,” Friday, 8:30-9:30 P.M. EST.
It is a quote. PHOTOPLAY MAGAZINE JANUARY 1962