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Mercedes McCambridge

  • Radio is truly the theater of the mind. The listener constructs the sets, colors them from his own palette, and sculpts and costumes the characters who perform in them.

  • ... the Irish ... are full of the fear of the Lord and the joy of living, and they don't know how to combine the two, but they'll sure have a good time trying.

  • ... a person born Irish bears somewhat of a curse, / But not to be Irish is a fate even worse.

  • I drank, like everybody else, for a while — until this structure that is my body began its rejection, its refusal to absorb physiologically the alcohol that I put into it. My body lacks certain faculties, certain vitally needed faculties that most people have, to burn off and throw off alcohol. This delicious chemical, this social amenity, this medicine that puts people at their ease because merely being together without it makes them uncomfortable, this medicine became my poison. The insidious, diabolical evil, the viciousness of my disease, is that the poison sets up its own craving for more of itself.

  • Nobody understands that by the time the addiction has set in the alcoholic is mandated to drink ... he cannot not drink! Nobody wakes up in the morning and says, 'Jiminy Cricket, I feel sensational! My life is really in great shape! I think I'll become an alcoholic!' I firmly believe that when a shaking-to-pieces alcoholic says he needs a drink or he will die, he means it.

  • Like so many other recovered alcoholics, I am to this day bewildered that it took so long for me to understand that there was no such animal as 'social drinking' for me; that it had nothing to do with my willpower or self-respect or moral fiber, that it was a simple biochemical intolerance to a drug.

  • It is said that people learn to hate each other because of little things ... not big ones. I know I have always learned to love because of little things ... I'm not at all sure that there are any big ones.

  • Everything edible is fried in Texas! Or it is buried in the ground to cook before it is eaten. ... Texas food should be forbidden! 'The steaks at night are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas!' And they are always afloat in grease. Next morning you are served a smaller steak, which serves as a platform for two fried eggs ... all of this afloat in the same grease! 'Chicken, you say? You bet! Comin' up!' Same grease! They are right. Comin' up! For hours afterwards. I couldn't believe the crust of an apple pie! Same grease!

  • I have always had a lot more trouble with my truths than with my deceits. It's always been hard for me to make people believe I am telling the truth.

  • My anger made me drink as an escape from reality, a way of forgetting. But you don't know when the medicinal effect ends and the poisoning begins ... This is my sixth year of sobriety. Overcoming alcoholism has been my greatest challenge and my greatest reward.

    • Mercedes McCambridge,
    • in Doug McClelland, Star Speak ()

Mercedes McCambridge, U.S. radio/stage/TV/film actor, Academy Award winner

(1916 - 2004)

Full name: Carlotta Mercedes McCambridge.