25 June 2007

Laughter Is The Best Medicine




In Greek mythology, the three graces represented joy, charm, and beauty. The daughters of the god Zeus and the nymph Eurynome, they were named Aglaia (Splendor), Euphrosyne (Mirth), and Thalia (Good Cheer). The Graces presided over banquets, dances, and all other pleasurable social events, and brought joy and goodwill to both gods and mortals.

In 1955 several members of the entertainment community established a group named after Thalia (Good Cheer) called The Thalians, but all the graces were invited to an annual dinner filled with comedy, entertainment, and celebration. Debbie Reynolds was elected President. More than 50 years later, she is still President. The sole purpose of the Thalians is to raise funds to support the Mental Health wing of Cedars Sinai to which they have contributed more than $30 million.

Each year, an honoree becomes the butt of all the jokes and merriment and walks off with a statue of Thalia. This year Roger Moore will be honored at the annual banquet at the Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills. Over the years, the following who's who of Hollywood have been victims of this rather raucous and unbelievably generous charity:

Peter Ustinov, Lana Turner, Harold Lloyd, Shirley MacLaine, Jimmy Durante, June Haver, Frank Sinatra, Fred MacMurray, Ed Sullivan, Ann-Margret, Busby Berkeley, Carol Burnett, Gene Kelly, Van Johnson, Sammy Davis, Ann Miller, Lucille Ball, Angela Lansbury, Debbie Reynolds, James Stewart, Bing Crosby, Whoopi Goldberg, Bob Hope, Liza Minnelli, Dorothy Lamour, Donald O`Connor, Rita Hayworth, Count Basie, Carol Channing, Jack Lemmon, Sally Field, Lena Horne, Kenny Rogers, Mary Tyler Moore, Marianne Rogers, Ruta Lee, Jane Wyman, Phyllis Diller, Mary Martin, Burt Bacharach, Robert Preston, Red Buttons

The Thalians Presidents club has established a StarWalkers Side of Stars in front of the Thalians Mental Health Center at Cedars-Sinai. Each glittering golden star bears the name(s) of benefactors who have donated more than $100,000, thereby keeping the dream alive and stronger than ever.



And another bit of "Grace" from my youth: Grace Slick and Jefferson Airplane: White Rabbit





26 comments:

Orhan Kahn said...

A nice bite of mythology in the morning is never a bad thing.

The Rock Chick said...

very cool! I had no idea about any of the things in your post...

I totally enjoyed the cartoon with White Rabbit/Go Ask Alice! That's one of my favorite songs!!!

Jessica The Rock Chick

P.S. Thanks so much for the link :) I really appreciate it.

Crazy Working Mom said...

That is an awesome post. :)
Your MMs are always so informative.

Thanks for dropping by.

Comedy + said...

Always a wonderful history lesson. Have a great MM. :)

Rhian / Crowwoman said...

Who doesn't love Grace and White Rabbit? Thanks for the trip (heh) down memory lane.

Travis said...

That's so cool. I've heard about that organization. And that is certainly a heavyweight list of celebrities.

Great post, as usual.

Villager said...

Jamie,
You brought back memories. Well done!

My Manic Monday post focuses on the Amazing Grace song.

If you have a moment I invite you to vote for Comedy+ and me in the Blogging to Fame contest!

peace, Villager

Neila said...

Now that was an awesome take on grace! Very original! Happy MM!

tegdirb92 said...

My first thought was Grace Slick too for this weeks theme :) Great job for MM!

katherine. said...

this was a great idea...good stuff to know.

Gattina said...

Very interesting post ! I had never heard about that. And it's also a very nice initiative to help !

vanillabirdies said...

Greek mythology never gets tedious. There are always so many layers.

Looove White Rabbit. Amazing song.

I've always thought the Disney movie was great...unlike some fans of the novel.

And I read Carroll like some chain smoke.

ian said...

Roger Moore, huh? I bet there will be some James Bond jokes there. And The Saint too, if anyone remembers that show.

Happy MM!

Ian

I Was Born2Cree8 said...

Jamie, I really enjoyed reading this post. Very interesting info.

I'm challenging everyone to have the grace to visit my post, lol.

Imma BlogCrazy

Alice

Reba's Run said...

Rufff, arf, whoofy :op

Translation: I wanna sneak into that place and eat their dinners, but Mom won't let me out alone.

Whoof!

Reba

Steve said...

If I were younger and made of concrete, i would ask one of those statues for a date. Of course, my intentions would be honorable, being a Southern gent and all.

Matt-Man said...

I went to school with a girl named Thalia. White Rabbit is one of my all-time faves. Cheers!!

Asara said...

Lovely post :) I definitely learned some things about Grace today!

Happy MM :)

Mags said...

Hey! I think Gracie did a post about this too!! How funny...

Happy MM...

Sarge Charlie said...

yep I saw this at gracie's, did not hear jefferson airplane there, that was cool dude.........

Janna said...

Wow, this was really interesting.
Thanks for doing Manic Monday!
I love Jefferson Airplane too. :)

Jantics and The Jannaverse

Dewey said...

Thank you for that youtube. It's a song I love and rarely hear.

So interesting about the Thalians. I'd never heard of this before.

Marilyn said...

I'd never heard of the Thalians either. That was a great post. Thanks.

Linda said...

What a great history lesson as well as eye-opening to some of the good things that celebrities do with all of the fame and fortune!

Of course, now I have "go ask Alice when she's ten fee tall" playing on a continuous loop in my my head!

I did a post on Custer's Last Stand today as it was the anniversary of the Battle of Little Bighorn. I'm getting to where I really like doing these little history lesson posts! I don't do them anywhere near as well as you but it's fun to do the research, especially considering I've always loved history!

Thanks for being my inspiration!

Turnbaby said...

Awesome!!! I have a beautiful monochrome print of the Three Graces hanging in my family room.

Sanni said...

Jersey and me, we both enjoyed reading your MM posting, Jamie! While Jersey tried to catch the white rabbit, I prefered the Thalians ;)