May 6, 2017

Rodeo Drive, Los Angeles. January, 1990

Dali, the friend not the artist, seen here on the left, knew how to pose better than anyone else I’ve ever met. How, for example, did she intuit on the spot that this expansive stance would be so perfect against the art nouveau swirls of the nouveau riche home on Rodeo Drive that we happened upon during our afternoon walk? Vinny, meanwhile, complements her “ta da” with his closed, pensive faux introspection. The three of us were in L.A. to attend the press events surrounding the 10th anniversary of the PBS program, Mystery!, on which we all worked. A visit to the Getty Museum (Mystery! host Vincent Price had told us he suspected the place was overrun with fakes), a drive to Malibu, and then Rodeo Drive. All this while the Northeast was buried in snow. And by the time we had to behave officially, welcoming actors and press to a reception that evening, we’d been laughing so hard and so long (Buddy Ebsen’s paintings on display at a “fine art” gallery!) that we were ready for anything. Including the press agent’s warning to a somewhat tipsy and inappropriately flirtatious “Sherlock Holmes” slated to speak from the podium: “Lay off the booze, will you?!”

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