October 31, 2014

A Stranger in the NIght (Part II)

Frank Sinatra at the United Center October 22, 1994

This post is the final installment commemorating Frank Sinatra's last concert on October 22nd, 1994 in Chicago's brand new United Center (home to the Chicago Bulls and Blackhawks).

My Grandmother 'Dodie' at far left (with her 4 sisters) who as a young bride and mother chaperoned her sisters to see the very first Pop Idol Frankie Sinatra at the Paramount Theatre in NYC in 1939-40 as part of the original "Bobby-Soxers"
At far right is their baby brother "Bunny".
While it was a crisp October evening in Chicago, everybody knew it was late December of Frank Sinatra's Years. Along with many in the crowd, I had also attended  a performance during Frank's previous 3 show Chicago engagement at the Civic Opera House in May 1993 where I did hear he was in fine form on opening night but it was painful to witness him stumble during his Saturday night performance where fatigue exacerbated by old age made him forget lyrics and occasionally mumble incoherently between songs.  At the time, I didn't think he'd ever perform live again let alone come back through Chicago yet when the next concert date was announced I pounced on 4 tickets as I knew my buddy oDutch would like to go and we'd take a couple of English au pairs from the neighborhood who also hung out with us at Ranalli's (along with our mutual friend King mentioned in previous 2 posts).  I forewarned the nannies of how Frank was now only a relic of the performer they heard on the Ranalli's jukebox and this concert was only to be looked upon as paying our respects.  Ordinarily, I prefer to attend cultural events by myself rather than having a date whose presence far too often distracts and diminishes the evening often leading to post performance tensions.  These two nannies had become genuine Sinatra fans and I knew they would also view this evening as quite special and always treasure.

Longtime Chicagoans like to think of Frank Sinatra as our own even though he's more often associated with New York.  Frank spent a great deal of time in Chicago over the years particularly during the 1950s and '60s when he frequently made movies or did extended engagements at Chicago Outfit associated nightclubs.  Everybody older than 70 has a Sinatra story to tell.  One I've heard frequently was when he got in a fight at Chicago's famous rib joint Twin Anchors. At every sporting event in Chicago they wait to play the Sinatra classic My Kind of Town during a pivotal moment to rouse the crowd to a fever pitch as everybody knows the words and sings along.

While I was careful to tamp down expectations on Frank's performance, the United Center was another vexing issue. The brand new home of the Chicago Bulls and Blackhawks had only been open a couple of weeks and had just hosted a Billy Joel concert.  The acoustics were so bad that attendees were demanding their money back.  We all were wearing our best suits and outfits and were prepared just to look at the evening as paying tribute to a once great performer and American icon.

Frank with the smoking hot Barbara Rush in Robin and the 7 Hoods filmed in Chicago.
The crowd was unlike any other I've ever attended a concert with. The whole Sinatra Rat Pack scene was making a big comeback in the major cities with the movie Goodfellas dialog often overheard and cigar bars on nearly every block downtown and the North Side.  I was afraid there were going to be a lot of these poseurs littering the crowd but thankfully that was not the case. We were among the youngest there with many looking like the crowd at Johnny Sac's daughter's wedding on The Sopranos.  These were people who fell in love while listening to Frank on the radio and cried when their daughters took their first dance to that same song at her wedding. The general mood was we were all there to say goodbye.

Johnny Sac & wife from The Sopranos.  Over 20,000 people looking like their siblings were at Frank's last concert
Don Rickles was the opening act. Rickles has always said that Sinatra was the making of him since when he was a complete unknown performing in Miami Beach in the late '50s, Frank came in to watch his act, liked what he saw, and gave Rickles gigs opening for him in Vegas and soon became a household name. I've always liked Rickles and he was sensational that night perfectly setting the stage for what was to follow.
The Paramount Theatre in NYC where my grandmother Dodie took her sisters to see the very first Pop Idol 1939-1940.

As Sinatra entered, there was a thunderous ovation that he acknowledged and then quickly dissipated by turning and ordering the band to commence with Come Fly With Me which has no musical prelude. I could tell immediately that Frank's voice sounded much stronger and more sure of itself than during the previous year's  performance and the United Center's acoustics issues had apparently been resolved.  The nannies grinned over at me with looks of startled bemusement that said "I thought you said Frank was washed up...". Frank was off and running and while the songs didn't sound like the recordings from the '50s and '60s, his richer, more mature, if less powerful, voice gave those songs a deeper meaning that everybody understood.  As the lights came up for intermission, the crowd noise went from eardrum piercing applause to an intensely animated din of electrified astonishment over what we had just witnessed. Dutch, the nannies, and I raced out as they were all in need of a quick ciggie to calm their overstimulated nerves. Everybody poring into the  Main Floor concourse was abuzz with excitement and not even 5 minutes into intermission with Dutch and the nannies nicotine fix not yet sated we heard noise coming from inside the main floor which we soon recognized as Frank Jr's band striking back up triggering a chaotic stampede of people stomping out just lit cigarettes, abandoning just purchased drinks, and racing to get back inside. I later heard Frank was in his dressing room pacing back and forth like a caged lion and being very conscious of having the now fleeting capacities of his A Game at his full command barked to Frank Jr and the band: "Fuck this...Let's go!!!" and ready or not here 'Ol Blue Eyes' comes adding frenzy to all the commotion.  Frank was every bit as strong after the short break and the night was reaching a crescendo as he did New York, New York, and My Way and he closed, just as we hoped he would, with My Kind of Town...and while there wasn't a dry eye in the house we each now had a sentimental journey to always help our lonely heart find a home.

October 23, 2014

A Stranger in the Night (Part I)

The Chairman of the Board

Commemorating the 20th Anniversary of Frank Sinatra's Last Concert at the United Center which I attended with my buddy Dutch and two English au pairs. Part II will be about the concert.

Esquire Magazine April 1966

Frank Sinatra Has A Cold is widely considered to be the greatest magazine profile ever written which Esquire published in April 1966.  The author was a fellow Italian-American from New Jersey, Gay Talese. The subject matter was gathered during the previous December just as Sinatra was turning 50. Sinatra had recently won Grammys for Best Album and Song (September of My Years/It Was A Very Good Year) and would do the same in 1966 with Strangers In The Night.  He was dating 20 year old Mia Farrow. Already in his rear view mirror was an impressive and underrated movie career (he was superb in The Man With The Golden Arm and The Manchurian Candidate).that included an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in  From Here to Eternity. Late November 1966 would see Frank take his now young bride Mia to Truman Capote's Party of The Century: the Black and White Ball at The Plaza Hotel. Everybody who was anybody was there...or wanted to be. As the magical night wore on, Capote sensed his great triumph was about to turn into a pumpkin as Frank motioned to Mia that it was time to head over to his favorite watering hole Jilly's Saloon. In a panic, Capote raced over and jumped in front of Frank with arms outstretched while pleading...begging Frank not to leave as he knew his departure would suck all the energy out of the room.  Sorry Tru, Frank Sinatra Has An Itch.

Frank & new bride Mia Farrow arriving at Truman Capote's Black & White Ball November 1966

Frank Sinatra was America's first Pop Idol. These days he is often thought of as a style icon from those boozy Vegas Rat Pack shenanigans that haven't aged well on youtube videos.  I can see how it was novel, spontaneous, and fun to see live (while also drunk) but I prefer to think of him primarily as an Artist who was the best interpreter of the Great American Songbook with his volatile temperament and eventful life giving him a very close acquaintance with heartbreak, loneliness, remorse, and triumph and our knowing of his ups and downs makes these songs far more than clever lyrics, rhythm, and melody.

Frank with The Love of His Life: Ava Gardner

For the many recent immigrants and their families, Frank was a kid from the neighborhood who made it big and never forgot where he came from.  Italians, Irish, Greeks, as well as other ethnic groups such as my friend King's Assyrians looked up to Frank because he was always good about acknowledging regular guys from the neighborhood such as the bellhops, waiters, cab drivers...or mail men such as my Greek friend Pete Poulos.  King told me that back in the '40s every time Sinatra's train arrived at Chicago's Union Station he'd summon all the black Pullman porters to meet him on the platform and peel off a crisp C-Note for each of them.  He helped numerous people get their start or make it big in show business including Sammy Davis Jr. and Quincy Jones.  When former heavyweight champion Joe Louis was down and out, Frank stepped in got him back on his feet and a job as greeter in a casino and later paid all expenses for his funeral and looked after his widow. He did the same for Sammy Davis Jr and others less famous.

My own personal connection with Frank Sinatra is primarily from sitting with my friend King in Ranalli's Pizzeria listening to the old standards; mostly just the two of us after the crowd had cleared out. There was no chatter; just King having Frank take him back to someplace or someone from long ago and me marveling at a perfect collaboration between a Cole Porter, Nelson Riddle, and the 20th Century's Greatest Singer and wondering about all the other tortured souls who listen to these same songs trying to make peace with their past.

**Editor's Note: GSL mistakenly thought Frank's last concert was October 24 (the knucklehead was looking at the date of the review) but in fact was October 22, 1994.  Since we missed the actual anniversary anyway, the post about the concert will be this Monday.

October 22, 2014

The King and I (Intro)

Middleweight Champion Rocky Graziano

I went on my morning walk along the lake preoccupied with my next two Sinatra posts commemorating his very last concert that I attended precisely 20 years ago this Friday. To really do Frank justice, and it's very important to me that I do, I came to the realization I had to first introduce my late friend 'King' who died in 2004 at age 77. I'll be writing much more about him in the coming weeks.

King's actual name was Ephraim Solomon nicknamed 'Neno' as a boy but upon becoming a very promising young middleweight prizefighter in the early '50s was given the moniker 'King Solomon' and was famous throughout Chicago and the sporting world as the next great middleweight. One of my favorite pics that got mislaid was a pic of King, Rocky Graziano (above), and some other Italian street tough all in nice looking suits from about 1952.  The pic was of King at the very pinnacle of his life. He had recently won all 6 of his first professional bouts by knockout and had just been featured in Ring Magazine (wearing a crown!), the Bible of Boxing, which in those days had a huge circulation and much larger readership. What struck me most was how King dominated the picture while standing next to a former middleweight champion of the world who was a household name. King was bigger, much better looking, and had an expression of fire and fury as he was glaring at the photographer and likely threatening to "split his head open like a melon" to use one of his favorite phrases.  Rocky looked to be the one glad to be in a pic with King.

Paul Newman as Rocky Graziano in Somebody Up There Likes Me

King never became that great middleweight champion and only because he let his demons win. His demons weren't drugs or alcohol but how he handled a breakup with a vivacious redhead he loved with all his heart.  To spite himself and I suspect to play the martyr in her eyes he started losing fights he could easily win, refused to train, and finally his backers, managers, and trainers gave up on him just as he had given up on himself.  It was a crushing blow to his Assyrian immigrant father, his brothers, and all the very close knit Assyrians in their little enclave in the Old Town neighborhood. He carried this albatross of self immolation the rest of his life

King was even more impressive out of the ring.  He had a roguish charm women found very attractive and he captivated nearly everyone he came into contact with his colorful extemporaneous philosophical monologues on everything from prizefighting, women, politics, and anything that struck his fancy. Pulitzer Prize winning author, radio host, and actor Studs Terkel was a huge fan and featured King most prominently in several of his books under the clever alias 'Kid Pharaoh'  Stud's interviews are archived at The Chicago History Museum and I occasionally listen to his interviews with King online. One of those interviews can be found here (scroll down to find Kid Pharaoh Parts 1 and 2).  When screen legend Bette Davis was in town during the '60s and '70s she had King take her to dinner and a show....nothing sexual he insisted only that she found his company stimulating. Mob boss Sam Giancana loved having King join him for lunch. I will go into more depth during my multi- installment feature on King in the coming weeks.
Screen Legend Bette Davis had King squire her around town during the '60s & '70s

From about 1990 until his death in October 2004 I either talked to or was with King nearly every day. One of our favorite hangouts was the old Ranalli's Pizzeria in Lincoln Park where we'd go and every night after we settled in he'd give me the signal to play his favorites on the jukebox and each song took him on a reverie....likely an old flame. He loved (and knew) the jazz singer Dinah Washington, a Billy Joel song Just the Way You Are and I'd always close it with selections from Sinatra's Reprise album including his torch song  The Summer Wind. Frank was his favorite.

October 20, 2014

Coming Attractions

Francis Albert Sinatra

Very busy week but must acknowledge the 20th Anniversary of Frank Sinatra's last concert. My buddy Dutch and I took two English au pairs to see Frank at the then brand new United Center (home to  Chicago Bulls & Blackhawks) 20 years ago this Friday so will give full account on Thursday and Friday.

Mossy Kade and Estella bottom

The Den's publicity machine is billing The Confessions of Mossy Kade as a Roman a clef and it's launch is right around the corner in serial format as a Den exclusive.

Dani's fabulous Book Club is November 22nd and due to her renovation and move, I am assisting so please join us in an always spirited discussion for Middlemarch one of the greatest works of literature in the English language.

October 16, 2014

What's New Pussycat

The Legendary Tom Jones
In honor of yesterday's birthday girl, I thought I'd do a little something on her favorite performer. When they lived in Wales during the late '60s and early '70s Millie was a frequent attendee at the concerts of Tom Jones and growing up I always knew she was a huge fan.

During the summer of '94 Tom Jones performed a free live concert on a Saturday afternoon in Chicago's Grant Park.  I then lived in a high rise just across the Chicago river and called my Estella to have her let Millie know that I was en route to watch TJ bring the house down. I had recently heard a few of his new songs on WXRT that were unlike anything I had ever heard him do.  He opened with this song only the studio version doesn't even come close to hearing it live with perfect outdoor acoustics and TJ's thunderous Welsh baritone ricocheting off 90 story skyscrapers alongside 100,000 people fully invested. I was there by myself (as I usually am at cultural events) and remember as that song came on everybody looking at each other either actually saying "WOW" or their expression saying it.  I couldn't believe how good he was and already was a big fan. He was in town to promote his new album The Lead and How to Swing It.  TJ swung for the fences that day and hit a tape measure shot .

**That pic up top was from The Lead... album from 1994 and became a Talisman with my crowd and made an annual appearance at the Christmas party I co-hosted with the Good Doctor.  Good Doc lived right across the hall on the top floor of a riverfront highrise.  As our party reached it's apex, 'TJ' was summoned for his cameo with the above pic placed prominently over the TV as we fired up that same song....GSL then took over the floor show.

October 15, 2014

Thoroughly Modern Millie

'Estella's' mother's name actually is Mille and used to look almost exactly like this and had this very dress.

I almost forgot this was a special day. There are likely a few of you out there who may recall that I occasionally mention 'my Estella' who now badgers me almost daily with hectoring inquiries on when will I begin The Confessions of Mossy Kade which is admittedly a bit overdue.  Naturally her interests, as always, have a self-serving angle as she can't wait to read an account of our early years together just as she often loves to talk about a hypothetical movie about me just so we can discuss which sexy actress gets to play her. About 5 years ago, we both agreed that Emily Blunt had overtaken Toni Collette (with dark brown hair) as ideal for the role. 

My Estella's mother is no Miss Havisham; she is a lovely woman who for almost 40 years has extended me every kindness and generosity.  When I was a socially awkward (towards girls) boy of 15 calling on her daughter she always went out of her way to make me feel welcome and convince me that she genuinely wanted me to stay and join them for dinner. More recently when I was in Iraq as a soldier in a war she strongly opposed (as did my own mother) she prayed for me every day.

Estella's mother's name actually is Millie and hasn't missed a major Broadway musical since even well before Ethel Merman took her last bow.  I was almost ashamed of myself for being so late to recognize an obvious opportunity to artfully demonstrate to someone I hold so dear how much I appreciate them. Much like Santa, GSL keeps a list of who's been naughty and nice and takes appropriate action. Only a couple of years ago in the course of 18 months Millie lost her beloved son, husband of over 50 years, while also suffering from some painfully debilitating health issues, and she even lost her much adored Yorkie who had been the apple of her eye for 15+ years. I was actually in town when her husband (Estella's father) banged his head which later turned out to be a blood clot on his brain and rushed him and everybody else over to the Emergency Room where he died only a couple of days later in otherwise perfect health.  I stayed at the house with Millie and helped her deal with the arrangements, visitors, notifications, etc. until I had to leave just prior to the funeral to get back to Chicago for mandatory National Guard duty.

Before leaving I made some arrangements; I ordered that poster up top and gave her live-in chauffer/handy-man instructions on what to do once it arrived.  I told her handy-man I wanted that poster hung in her stately dining room right next to where she sits with her phone, reads her mail, and receives visitors and  how to overcome any potential objections of having such a garish object in her dining room by saying "how about we just put it up for a couple of weeks as it would mean so much to GSL....". She relented on those terms and up it went.  Because of her recent loss and enormous popularity she received a huge flood of visitors in those immediate days and weeks after the funeral.  Many of those visitors were lifelong friends and relatives who upon entering the dining room to comfort Millie would shriek in amazement at the poster and how much it resembled a younger Millie both physically and in spirit.  Millie would delightfully reply how much she loved the show both times she saw it and she actually did have a dress exactly like that and loved to dance the Charleston.

I have always known that Tea & Sympathy works even better with an Overture of giggles.

Epilogue: I just got off the phone only minutes ago with my dear Millie to wish her a Happy Birthday.  I told her how much I'd love to be taking her to a fancy lunch just like I did during my last visit and how smashing she looked in her Cheetah print jacket and brand spanking new ruby red Dooney & Bourke handbag she acquired for the occasion. She told me she can't wait to show me the new handbag she just got when I'm there for Christmas.

Epilogue II- Not so long ago Estella was visiting her mother and suggested that they move that garish Broadway poster back to the little used TV room tucked away in the back of the house.  With a cold stare, Millie told her daughter "It's staying right where it is!".

Update: Here are the twin birthday girls.

Millie (on right) with twin sister Tillie only minutes ago en route
 to their Birthday Party with Estella in tow

October 13, 2014

Den OOTD Debut

The Fabulous MaiTai

I thought it only appropriate to begin with MaiTai aka "Queen of the Selfie" to set a high bar for the Den's inaugural OOTD and not just because she is a great beauty with a 20yo runway model's figure but she always is dressed in a way that's smart, stylish, and au courant without being hostage to the season's passing whims. Even though she has that perfect tall willowy figure she is often wearing something a woman of any size could wear. I could easily see my now matronly mother wearing a version of this outfit and look quite lovely but it still looks fabulous on a Fashionista who can look good in anything.

GSL's Sage Advice: get matching trousers and sweater-coat in your most flattering shade of base colour. Key is to get sweater-coat to precise fit and length...especially if you are petite. Those two base pieces allow for numerous accessory opportunities with various blouses, scarves, turtlenecks, and accent jewelry pieces. Actually spend top dollar if necessary to get highest quality and perfect fit for those base pieces as it will double or triple length of wear and has numerous outfit possibilities all in the same week.

The Den will be opening a Help Line to assist.

*That scarf is a "Zebra Pegasus" from Hermes that is taking the world by storm..just ask Faux Fuchsia, Heidi, Naomi et al.

October 11, 2014

Peter Poulos- American Hero

Peter Poulos- World War II Veteran Age 97
My buddies took me out for a belated birthday dinner Saturday night with my best friend, aka The Good Doctor, telling me he was bringing a "special guest". He wasn't kidding. The Good Doctor brought his favorite patient he has been helping keep a medical marvel for almost 20 years. His name is Peter Poulos and he was a highly decorated war hero in World War II and he's 97 years old and fast approaching his 98th birthday December 23rd.  He's a Chicago legend and for good reason.  This link is a TV interview back when he was a wee lad of 92.  He looks and sounds even better now.  For over 31 years he has been volunteering 3 days a week at the HInes Veterans Administration Hospital.

In WWII  Pete served in the 6th Army in the South Pacific seeing heavy action at Guadacanal, Java, and the Phillipines and was with General MacArthur when the Terms of Surrender were signed by the Japanese ending the war. Upon returning to Chicago he was given a plum assignment as Postman for Chicago's Gold Coast where he became something of a celebrity ambassador based on his War Hero status. When Sinatra was in town at The Pump Room he'd ask to have 'The Greek' join him for coffee.  At The Original Playboy Mansion 'Hef' would insist Pete make himself at home, have a drink, and enjoy the scenery.

The Hines VA Hospital is the largest medical facility in the world encompassing 200 acres and for over 31 years Pete has been there 3 days a week walking around 10 miles a day going from bed to bed to rehab centers and helping sick men and women who have honorably served our country get better both physically and mentally.  He is an inspiration to every one he sees always sharing words of encouragement and instilling hope to those who need it most. He showed me a pic he keeps in his wallet of when he greeted President George W. Bush at Grant Park about 10 years ago when he arrived on Marine 1.  I asked Pete if I could get a copy and soon it shall hang in a place of honor in The Lion's Den.
GSL, The Highly Honorable Pete Poulos, and The Good Doctor
Ditka's Steak House
Chicago's Gold Coast
....Hey Tabs, those gals you say need a port in a storm should join
 GSL, Good Doc, and Pistol Pete for some of this 20yo Tawny

This week 97 year old Peter Poulos, just as he has been doing for the last 31+ years, will go to the Hines VA Hospital for three 10 hour days and offer assistance, hope, and inspiration for the men and women he refers to as "my heroes" as an unpaid volunteer.

October 10, 2014

The MopPhil Book Club

My absolute favourite blog series feature is from our very own DaniBP and her wonderful Mop Philosophy Book Club.  I sent Dani an email lobbying for Middlemarch to be her next selection and then knowing how busy she is with her renovation project and move I told her I would be more than happy to help in any way should she be too overwhelmed with everything else going on.  As it turns out she has accepted my offer so your GSL will be assisting Dani for the next Mop Philosophy Book Club to be held on Saturday, November 22nd.  Dani read Middlemarch when she was 15 and I am hoping circumstances allow her to reread this classic so we can hear her perspective nearly 3 decades later.  Dani always writes a superb preview announcing the selection and her Book Club introduction is always insightful and beautifully written.  I only wish I had read Dani's brilliant introduction for To Kill a Mockingbird prior to reading the book as I found the young narrator tough going likely due to starting TKAM the day after reading a book with a much older British narrator.

'George Eliot' pen name of Mary Anne Evans
Aged 30 by the Swiss artist Alexandre Louis François d'Albert Durade (1804–86)
from wikipedia
Why Middlemarch? I periodically skim the British papers and came across the Daily Telegraph's list of 100 best novels which had Middlemarch ranked at the very top.  Also, I read where both Martin Amis and Julian Barnes (he's my favorite living author) have called it the best novel in the English language which shocked me as I had never heard it mentioned in the top rank with Tolstoy, Stendahl, or Jane Austen.  Also, I think Martin Amis is a brilliant nonfiction writer and nobody writes better about writers and writing but am always puzzled why I find most of his novels so deeply unsatisfying. 

I am hoping Dani gets a large turnout for her book club as we at The Den feel duty bound to see that it becomes a huge success since that is what we are all about. The Den is a champion of women of merit. The Den is a champion of literary excellence. The Den is about promoting more active engagement with The Arts as it leads to a more fulfilling life.  My children's book series is specifically designed to be a shared experience between caregiver and child. It is a little overwritten for it's target audience to help build vocabulary and promote discussion with a little moral instruction. I want these children to grow up loving the art of language, storytelling, and have deeper literary connections to those they share these early reading experiences with.  My goal is a parent and child who begin with reading one of my stories together will one day read a book like Middlemarch together.  I think of all the mediums of artistic expression, a novel is the form you become the most deeply involved with.  I will never forget meeting my best friend's mother for the first time. My friend assured me that his mother and I would connect right away as she was the lone serious reader in a family of doctors, engineers, and lawyers. We were at brunch and it just so happened that we had both recently finished The Professor and The Madman which is actually a superb work of creative non-fiction that steals your heart. When I saw her face light up, I knew we were dear friends for life.  When I was in Iraq, she had her granddaughters load an ipod with Christmas music and sent it to me just after Thanksgiving.  Great literature makes our lives more meaningful.

October 06, 2014

Pearls Before Swine...

If diamonds really are a girls best friend they'll tell MM she looks better in these.

Today is my 50th Birthday and this digital age has much that vexes me but there are also enormous benefits I must learn to take greater advantage of.  For instance, in a matter of seconds I can listen via youtube to T. S. Eliot reading The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock and hear how "the women come and go talking of Michelangelo" or an interview with the fascinating Orson Welles, and often happen upon new subjects that intrigue and then being quickly able to feed my curiosity.   Also the internet has allowed me to connect with kindred spirits from all over the world and share a little bit of ourselves that those closest to us may not even be aware of.  The trick of course is to make these internet and other digital age on-demand conveniences enhance our lives and facilitate actually meeting those kindred spirits and getting out and engaging with those interesting people, places, and things we have stumbled across online.

Ladies, Vermeer & GSL know a thing or 2 about beauty.

Oh yes back to pearls, they are my absolute favorite piece of jewelry. They always look good on a woman and tell me she's someone I would find interesting.  I can't tell the difference between real or fake pearls and don't care either way.  I am not big on jewelry and of course never wear any but the one gift I'd purchase for my Immortal Beloved would be a single strand of pearls.

Mum around age 20.

October 01, 2014

The Old North State

DRL, Mum, and GSL Westport, CT 1967

I am in North Carolina this week visiting my Mum and brother with only sporadic internet access.  The Lion's Den will be back with a vengeance on Monday.