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Martha Stewart is best known for making a business out of being a homemaker. But the 79-year-old didn't spend her life in the kitchen. In fact, the New Jersey native started her career as a stockbroker on Wall Street where, she realized anything goes when it comes to making money.
"We were the real thing," she told Harper's Bazaar, making reference to the film Wolf of Wall Street. "I lived it. I mean, every man on Wall Street was trying to get you. Every man was trying to touch you in the cab. We had martinis for lunch."
Stewart said she was "a modest girl" herself, not taking part in some of the crazier activities around the office. Still, when it came to getting ahead in that atmosphere, she was expected to put up with some of the toxic behavior. "You had to keep your cool and just do your thing, and brush them away," she said of the men in particular. And although she was able to compartmentalize a lot of the poor treatment then, the #MeToo movement seemed to bring up a lot of complicated feelings for Stewart.
"It has been really painful for me," she told the publication. "I’ve known almost every single one of the famous guys that has been accused and set aside. Some were certainly guilty of a lot of what was accused. But some were — it’s just their awful personalities. I am not going to mention their names, but I know those people very, very well, and you know the man just talks about sex during dinner. That doesn’t mean anything to me."
Although she ultimately made the decision that "the life of the homemaker was more interesting to me than the life on Wall Street," Stewart's life didn't get any easier, or more boring. Instead, she referred to her latest endeavors, including a catering business, as the "most difficult job ever." In 2004, Stewart served a five-month sentence in federal prison followed by several months of home confinement and probation for financial crimes. Again, the difficult experience didn't tear the entrepreneur down.
"I knew I was strong going in and I was certainly stronger coming out," she said of her time behind bars. "It was a very serious happening in my life. I take it very seriously."
Stewart has since gone on to build up the Martha Stewart brand even more, introducing new categories along the way. Most recently she's become involved in the world of CBD, by way of her friend Snoop Dog, although she admitted that she doesn't actually smoke weed with the rapper. "What do they call it? A contact high?” she said. “That’s the extent of my getting high with Snoop, is secondhand smoke, which is pretty serious, by the way."
And although her business continues to thrive, Stewart does have one regret.
"Saturday Night Live asked me to host. My probation officer wouldn’t give me the time,” she admitted. “That really pissed me off, because I would have loved to have hosted Saturday Night Live. I’d like that on my résumé."
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