20 Memorable Quotes from Grey Gardens

Little Edie (right) sits with her mother Edith in a Grey Gardens bedroom.

In 1975, Albert and David Maysles filmed a documentary about the mother/daughter duo inhabiting the dilapidated Long Island manse Grey Gardens. Edith “Little Edie” Beale and Edith “Big Edie” Bouvier Beale – respectively, cousin and aunt of Jackie Kennedy Onassis – lived alone and in squalor, which might be why much of their on-screen dialogue sounds so utterly loony. Here are twenty of the Edie and Edith’s most memorable quotes.

Little Edie


I only care about three things: the Catholic Church, swimming and dancing.


You can’t have your cake and eat it too in life.


It’s very difficult to keep the line between the past and the present.

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But, you see, in dealing with me the relatives didn’t know that they were dealing with a staunch character. And I tell you, if there’s anything worse than a staunch woman … S-T-A-U-N-C-H. There’s nothing worse, I’m telling you.


There are some nice people in the world, you know, I just don’t happen to be related to any of them.


Perhaps I’d better begin taking care of Mother and bossing her and cooking her some food. I think maybe I ought to give her cooked meals at certain hours.


Grey Gardens is oozing with romance, ghosts, and other things.


I’m not ashamed of anything. Where my body is is a very precious place.


I got fat not wearing clothes for two years.


Of course, I’m mad about animals, but raccoons and cats become a little bit boring. I mean, for too long a time.


I better check on mother […] She’s a lot of fun. I hope she doesn’t die.

Big Edie


You see, she doesn’t want me to eat anymore ‘cause she got so fat. So I have to sit here and starve all the time.


The cat’s going to the bathroom right in back of my portrait. I’m glad he is. I’m glad somebody’s doing something they want to do.


I didn’t starve my children, did I? They were very nice children. I enjoyed them tremendously.


Isn’t it awful what a dancer gets fat?

Little Edie modeling in her youth


France had just fallen to Hitler. France fell, but Edie didn’t fall.


See how beautiful Edie was when she was young? It’s perfectly foolish of her not to look that way now. You look horrible.


You get very independent when you live alone. You get to be a real individual.


I’m going to invite Father Huntington over to spend the entire night with me. That’s what I’m going to do. I love the church so much.


It’s very hard to live nowadays. Living is very difficult. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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