"She saw it and sat," says MacLaine. "Didn't say anything."
What, because you're famous and she didn't want to upset the talent?
"Exactly. That's how full of shit she was."
She is the first to mock her own reputation. "People think I'm nuts," is a common MacLaine refrain, which they certainly do, although the fact she acknowledges it softens the impression, so that all that business – the reincarnation, the crystals, the aliens – plays out more like an eccentric hobby than full on insanity."
To this end, the thing she values most in life, she says, is honesty, for pragmatic as well as for moral reasons: the only way to be famous and not go mad, says MacLaine, is to hide in plain sight; to undermine the illusion of celebrity before anyone else can. This is both an honest approach and a contrivance to give the impression of honesty. MacLaine has been doing this a very long time."