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"Any idiot can be liked. It takes talent to scare the crap out of people." And the mean girl of the 1800s is still kicking up dust. After the recent autobiographies of Little House of the Prairie's Melissa Gilbert and Melissa Sue Anderson, the TV sisters' arch nemesis Alison Arngrim ("Nellie Oleson") has the last word on the long-running family show, in Confessions of a Prairie Bitch . Arngrim chronicles her life, from her showbiz parents (Dad managed Liberace, Debbie Reynolds and Susan Anton, while Mom was a voice-over actress on Casper the Friendly Ghost , Gumby and Davey and Goliath ) and working with director Michael Landon to her AIDS activism after the loss of onscreen husband Steve Tracy to AIDS. And what about those crazed fans who just can't let go of the petty coats and sausage curls that made Arngrim a star? It's not every actress who has a gay comedy troupe, the Nellie Olesons, name themselves after her TV persona. Arngrim reads at Vroman's, 695 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena; Fri., July 2, 7 p.m. (626) 449-5320 . --Siran Babayan
Fri., July 2, 7 p.m., 2010


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