This post took forever to put together because there are so many pictures and Cathy Larmouth is so funny and genuine in the interview. Hope you find her as absorbing as I did.
Photographed by Ken Marcus.
The lovely and talented Cathy Larmouth was Playboy’s Miss June, 1981. She is a really fun-loving gal, and she is unbelievably quick-witted, as I hope you’ll see.
I mainly would like her hilarious write-up (the hilarity comes from her quotes and jokes) to do the majority of the talking in this post.
Even if you normally skip the text, give some of what Ms. Larmouth has to say a whirl, because she is a hoot and a holler, a self-deprecating and talented young genius with a sweet heart and a good head on her shoulders.
“I don’t want to be famous, don’t particularly want to be an actress or a model. I just want a good man and a family. I hardly think showin’ your bazongas to 6,000,000 people qualifies anybody as a celebrity. On the other hand, it’s a great way to meet people!”
(“Lady of the Lake.” Playboy, June 1981.)
Cathy’s heritage is English, French and Mohawk Indian. She was the youngest of four children (she has three older brothers), and admits that she was spoiled, especially by her father, who died when she was 22.
“I loved my father more than anyone,” she says, “and maybe I still do. He was a warm, funny, very smart man. I always carry a poem I wrote to him after he died, so in case I ever get hit by a truck or something, whoever finds my identification will know that I was a person who had a heart.”
Oh, lord, all that dust again.
My favorite shot. This should have been the centerfold.
Cathy admits she’s a hopeless romantic, who “should have been born 40 or 50 years ago. … My favorite songs are from the Thirties, Forties and Fifties; my favorite bands are Glenn Miller’s and Nat ‘King’ Cole’s and my all-time favorite piece is Clair de Lune, by Debussy.”
Without too much persuasion, Cathy can be induced to sing one of her favorite oldies, such as “Cry Me a River” or “More Than You Know”. She has a good voice and loves to imitate various female pop stars, ranging from Dolly Parton to Helen Reddy.
“I’ve never done this stuff on a stage,” she says, “and I probably never will.”
Hooray for Dolly Parton! And if you are having trouble placing Helen Reddy, she was Nora in the Disney flick Pete’s Dragon (Don Chaffey, 1977). You know Lampie — played by Mickey Rooney — the lighthouse-keeper’s adult daughter who was waiting for her long-thought-dead fiance Paul to sail back to Passimoquoddy? — “I’ll be your candle on the water/my love for you will always burn…” Don’t front like you don’t know exactly what I’m talking about.
(… cont’d) “It’s mostly for the shower.”
Still, it’s a better-than-average voice. Why not try for a singing career?
“I hate to say this,” she answers, “but the truth is, I’m not motivated. I’m basically lazy! I’d like to write a great satirical novel, for instance, but I’d never get around to it.”
Get ready for the most hilarious part, where she spontaneously makes up a shitty poem on purpose:
“I write poetry that isn’t half bad, and I realize that all girls write poetry, but I think mine’s a cut above that awful stuff you see in the women’s magazines like Cosmopolitan, stuff like —
‘I looked out the window at where your Rolls once sat
The sight of your tooth marks on the Gouda cheese
Nostalgia and pain
I dropped two ‘Ludes
and turned on the dishwasher.’
— You know? that kind of stuff.”
We suggest that maybe Cathy has a future as a poetic humorist. She demurs. “Oh, come on. That’s the hang-up most everybody in Los Angeles has. Everybody thinks she can sing, write and act, and that she’s beautiful.”
“The fact is that very few people get to be really good at any one of those things. And only a few people are really all that attractive, and they tend to float through life without ever developing themselves.”
Truth bombs comin’at’cha live. Adulthood blows, but please remember that no matter how downtrodden you feel you are still NOT YOUR JOB! Quit and go on tour.
I’m sure I would have developed my potential a lot more if I looked more like, say, Lily Tomlin than Little Annie Fanny. Unfortunately, until I was about 20, that’s what I looked like: a comic character.”
“I was 5’8″ when I was 15 and I weighed about 96 pounds, at least ten of which were breasts. I had a low-cut dress with a push-up bra that I wore to school sometimes. Once, in my math class (which I wasn’t doing so well at), my teacher, who was a man, stopped beside my desk and whispered, ‘If you wear that dress to my class twice a week, I’ll give you an A.’”
“Not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, I did and he did! Isn’t that awful?” She giggles mischievously.
Someday we’ll find it, a Muppet connection …
Cathy wants to give special thanks to [photographer Ken] Marcus. “He is one of the smartest, nicest, funniest men I have ever met. When he found out that I have a pretty big appetite, he nicknamed me Miss Piggy!”
“Soon, everyone at Playboy Studio West was calling me Miss Piggy. Ken and the other Playboy staffers helped me live up to my nickname by taking me to all my favorite restaurants and letting me eat all I could. I once ate an $80 lunch! You might say I can put it away!”
“So, after the shooting, they had a party for me at Studio West, and someone had a cake made with a picture of Miss Piggy on it. Ken shoved my face into the cake! I didn’t mind — I love slapstick.”
What a great and good-natured woman, am I right?
“I’m not against E.R.A., but the fact is that men are very different from women. For instance, a lot of women may hate my guts for saying this, but I think women are more emotional than men. I don’t think blurring the sex roles makes any sense. Pretty soon, you’ll be calling your grandmother your grandperson. That’s not my style.”
“One can’t just go through life being led by one’s chest! At the end of my life, I’d much rather look back and see that I’d been a good wife and a good mother than that I’d been a model.”
A very beautiful personal epitaph.
Cover model is the Playmate of the Year, photographed by Phillip Dixon. In 1981, the PMOY, the lovely and talented Terri Welles (Miss May 1980), was given a cash prize and a brand-spank-banking new Porsche 924 Turbo. I said goddamn. Eventually, Playboy Enterprises sued her, like in 1996 or 1998. Look it up. Interesting shit.
What’s really freaky for me is that while sussing out what was what in Ms. Larmouth’s Playboy issue, I stumbled over the May issue of this same year and it has a featured interview with philosopher and psychologist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, which I’d mentioned in the bookworm post I had promised my dear aunt I’d start boning up on her death and grief writings. Wild coincidence, but a great jumping-off point for something on which I’ve been dragging my feet for nearly a decade. So I’m'a hit that now after I post up a Daily Batman and plan to be outie for the night. Feels like fate. Mysterious ways, am I right??
Cathy’s daughter Hayley confirms that Ms. Larmouth passed away in Utah following a heart attack January 4, 2007, at the age of 53. Ms. Larmouth had numerous complications in her declining health, including a hole in her heart. I hope that because her health problems were an early warning, she was able to at least partially prepare herself and her family for the loss. R.I.P. to a very special gal.