adela rogers st. johns

Mrs. St. Johns once invited the lovers to her Malibu Colony home.  She came back from an afternoon swim to find Cooper asleep on a couch and Lupe kneeling beside him.  "Now I yield to no one in finding Cooper the most attractive man that’s ever been in Hollywood, but Cooper asleep and snoring gently with his mouth open is a good deal like any other man asleep and snoring gently with his mouth open.“

Lupe, noticing Mrs. St. Johns’ arrival, said, "Is he not beautiful?  I have never seen anyone so beautiful as my Gary.”

Cooper had woken and overheard the compliment, which struck him as amusing.  Lupe turned violently on him.  "You laugh at your Lupe’s love?“  Now it was a hair-pulling, scratching, one-way fight.  Lupe adored scenes.

Strange, how up to a given moment it seemed so funny, tiny, tempestuous Lupe Velez and six-foot-three of slow-moving Cooper; her firecracker Mexican accent and her sparkling laughter against the slow drawl and slower smile of the big cowboy; Lupe’s public demonstrations and declarations of love and Gary’s embarrassment and adoration.

Adela Rogers St. Johns

*photo from The Wolf Song