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At the age of twenty-one, Walt was bankrupt — and through with cartooning forever. That’s when he decided to give Hollywood a whirl.

One of the reasons why I've been elected to tell my Dad Walt Disney’s story is that he clings to a stereotyped notion that my younger sister, Sharon, is The Beauty and I am The Brain. I know I'm not The Brain, but Dad thinks I am because I read a lot as a child.

My sister, Sharon, and I have reversed the roles that Dad assigned to us mentally when we were teen-agers. He always said that Sharon would be married and would be a mother first, while I'd be the intellectual-type career woman. Things didn’t work out according to Dad's plan. Sharon has begun to pursue a career (modeling) and she's fast becoming an intellectual, what with taking poetry courses.

Still, Dad’s always saying to me, ‘Why don’t you wear something feminine, Diane? Why don’t you dress like a woman instead of wearing a shirt and blue jeans?” If I do get all gussied up, he doesn’t notice it. On the other hand, he listens to what I have to say because of the “intellect” label he’s pinned on me, and when Sharon says anything he pays no attention to it. To him, she's just Sharon the Look girl talking.

When Sharon emerges from her room dressed for a date, he looks at her and says, “Everybody look at Sharon! Isn't she lovely? Sharon can really wear clothes.” And he often says to me, “Why don’t you wear something soft and clinging? You can look like a woman if you try.”

And I'm the one who has two babies.


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