Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Rant #972: We Still Dream of Jeannie

Who is the most beautiful woman in the world?

To me, my wife is the most beautiful. She has all the attributes that make her beautiful, both inner beauty and beauty that you can see.

But she is not famous. She is my wife and I love her to the nth degree.

As far as famous women, one of the most beautiful--at least outwardly, because I don't know her personally--is Barbara Eden, who rose to fame in the 1960s as the iconic title character in the hit sitcom "I Dream of Jeannie."

Eden, who is somewhere between 78 and 81 years of age depending on the source you use, has it all.

She has not only a pretty face, but a fantastic figure, which she showed off as much as the censors would allow on that 1960s sitcom, where she starred with Larry Hagman and Bill Daily.

Well, the other day, Eden proved that she still had it, even about 50 years later.

At the Life Ball charity event in Vienna, Austria, she donned her pink crop top and harem pants there, and shocked everybody by how good she looked in the outfit, the same one she wore on the series.

"Here it is folks--the navel that put NBC on edge," she tweeted, with a photo of her in costume.

And by the photo, she hasn't lost anything--she looks fantastic.

Heck, she even showed up former President Bill Clinton, which is a really difficult thing to do.

Eden has seemingly been around forever.

You might remember that years prior to Jeannie, she entered the public consciousness as the sweet young thing on two "I Love Lucy" episodes, the object of Ricky Ricardo and Fred Mertz's attention. Lucy and Ethel didn't like it, but what man wouldn't go ga ga over Eden?

And Eden has since spoken about that experience, saying that she was nervous the entire time because Desi Arnaz was so "handy" with her.

She made a few films after that, and then came "Jeannie."

"Jeannie" was always thought to be NBC's more sexy reaction to ABC's wildly successful "Bewitched" sitcom starring Elizabeth Monthgomery and Dick York.

"Jeannie" was never as good as "Bewitched" was, but it was a very good show on its own, pushing the censors to the brink of despair.

In those days, Eden had to cover her navel so as to be on the good side of the censors. And the scripts had to be just right, because on this show, Eden and Hagman weren't married, or at least until the end of the show's run.

So they became one of TV's first couples to live together without the benefit of marriage, although the show was very careful to point out that Tony Nelson lived in a house and Jeannie lived in a bottle.

Yeah, right.

Anyway, all these years later, how many of us could actually fit into, let's say, our bathing suits that we wore 50 years ago, 40 years ago, even 30 years ago?

I know that I couldn't. (Yes, I know, I was six years old 50 years ago, so the chances of me fitting into that bathing suit are nil. But, just for comparison sake, I know that I couldn't fit into my bathing suit of 40 years ago, when I was 16. No way, no how.)

Although it wasn't a bathing suit that Eden fit into very nicely the other day, her genie outfit is comparable, and her ability to fill it as well as she did decades ago proved that through probably excellent genes and a good diet, she can still do it and that she still has it.


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