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Barbara Sinatra tells about her life with Frank

5:56 PM, May 29, 2011   |    comments
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It wasn't always pretty, although she says she was the "luckiest woman in the world" to be his wife.

Sinatra's widow, 84, is now telling what it was like living with Ol' Blue Eyes in her aptly titled memoir Lady Blue Eyes: My Life With Frank.

If you're interested in celebrity marriages, this memoir is the predictable dip into such shallow waters. If you're not, you can at least pass the time counting the names dropped. There are thousands.

Model, Vegas showgirl, wife of Zeppo Marx, Barbara had been out and about before she met Sinatra. He quickly won her over, but their long-term affair before their marriage did not please Sinatra's feisty mother, Dolly, who asked him, "Aren't there enough whores around?"

He was attentive, polite, but best of all he had a good eye "for stone," she writes. Meaning he could pick out amazing jewelry, including a famous Cartier necklace. And then there were the flights to Paris for dinner, the expensive cars, the suites in world-class hotels around the world. She calls it all "some candy jar."

There was a price to pay for all this, however. Sinatra could be a bully, screaming at Washington Post society columnist Maxine Cheshire and pushing a man into a phone booth, punching him before sliding the door shut.

She admits he was "definitely a Jekyll and Hyde" personality, recounting numerous evenings when he was overdrinking with his buddies, making scenes from New York to Hong Kong, ripping phones from the wall and throwing them into windows

He also wasn't the most romantic. She had to accept that fact when a prenup was delivered to her on the morning of their wedding. She signed it.

Did he ever cheat? All she'll say is that she took Palm Springs neighbor Lee Annenberg's advice: Look the other way.

As for his connections to the Mob, she only says he got frustrated with the press for always alleging it. The press was not his favorite.

If you're a Sinatra fan, you'll learn he loved grilled cheese sandwiches, unfiltered Camels and Jack Daniels, but hated women who wore too much perfume. He also hated women who couldn't hold their liquor.

Barbara Sinatra could.

(Copyright © 2010 USA TODAY)

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