The Charles Hamilton Galleries planned to auction off a passel of Judy Garland's personal effects this fall, but all were nipped off the market by daughter Liza Minnelli, who now claims ownership. Along with the fan letters and other tributes is Liza's French notebook from 1960, when she was 14. The verb conjugations are hardly titillating, but tucked inside the book is an unfinished letter from Liza in which she confesses, "I am still madly in love with Bobby Darin," and a note to Judy from her third husband, Sid Luft, promising, "Somehow all your unhappiness will go away. You deserve better than this and it will be." The notebook and other memorabilia were found by the new owner of a house Judy had hastily moved out of; at the time she refused to accept their return. Now the owner wants to sell them. Hamilton hopes to have them on the block again after the lawyers involved decide whom they belong to.
The Rockford Pipes
Now that James Garner has proved he can both act and sell cameras, he is up to something new. At summer's end he slipped quietly into Nashville under Waylon Jennings' wing to record some country music demos. Though a longtime fan of the old pluck-and-warble, Garner allowed as how "I never thought much about singing until Waylon talked me into it." But can he sing? Still knocked out by the sight of the 52-year-old hunk, one staffer at the recording company, Cedarwood Publishing, breathes: "Who cares?"
The Other Shoe
While campaigning for Republican congressional candidates, former Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz has been telling this story on himself. It won't help him shed his reputation for ethnic impurity on the platform. At a speaking date in Gary, Ind. where the audience was largely Polish-American, Butz reports, "I asked the chairman of the meeting, 'Would I be safe telling a Polish joke here tonight?' He said, 'Of course. Nobody will understand it.' "
That Tears It
Once she was a sweet and simple teen, but after making four horror movies in two years, actress Jamie Lee Curtis, daughter of Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis, may be getting a tad weird. To celebrate their nine months together, her boyfriend, screenwriter Ray Hutcherson, gave her a Tiny Tears doll. For the occasion, she says, "We had a picnic on the beach with Tiny Tears, and when Christmas comes he's giving me a car seat for the doll." Scratch those rumors, by the way, that Jamie is interested in reprising her mother's role in the planned remake of Psycho. "This might sound snotty," says Jamie, 22, "but I don't need it. I've been working for three years to make it on my own."
•Why has Garry Marshall, an executive producer of ABC's Happy Days and Laverne and Shirley, rented a tiny San Fernando Valley hideaway just for writing? Explains Marshall, one of Hollywood's top practitioners of nepotism (sister Penny Marshall plays Laverne, dad Tony produces L and S, sister Ronnie produces HD): "The one drawback of working with your family is that they keep walking into your office—and you can't say no."
•Valerie Perrine has ordered a $95 needlepoint pillow kit from a Manhattan boutique. Its message: "Too many men, Too little time."
•Just after moving from Los Angeles to Aspen, Dionne Warwick, 38, suffered terrible headaches. Fearing premature menopause or worse, she called her doctor, who diagnosed the pain as simple smog withdrawal—Aspen's air is too clean. His advice: "You just have to adjust." She's trying, on the theory that you can get used to anything, even health.