Okay, Micheline told me to buy something from the auction but I wasn’t actually at the auction — just the preview party. And friends who did buy at the auction got soaked on the shipping — really, Julien’s charged them 500% over the normal cost of shipping. So yeah, I’m glad I didn’t bid on-line! Imagine if Julien’s charged $60 to ship a few ounces of silver what they would have charged to ship that grand piano. Good thing I didn’t succumb to temptation. Wait — was I tempted? Actually, no. Well, okay, maybe for about 46 seconds.
I had stopped at Cherry Picked, the thrift store in Santa Monica where Phyllis’s son Perry had donated some of her things. Justine showed me a pair of shoes that I remember Phyllis wearing and when I squealed with glee, she insisted on giving them to me. I felt sort of bad about that, although I had already decided I was going to buy a painting, so maybe not too bad. And besides, I reminded myself, the shoes were actually donated to Justine in the first place. But on the other hand, her shop does support charities … My brain was battling with my conscience and for once, my brain won. I took the shoes and was delighted to have something of Phyllis’s that I remembered her wearing.
Then, watching the auction on-line, I came to the collection of purses and I saw the matching purse to “my” shoes! I was beyond thrilled. I squealed again and scared the pud-waddin’ out of the cats! And that’s when I called Paula and she urged me to bid on the purses. I hadn’t pre-registered to bid (thank goodness) so that opportunity went by the wayside.
The catalog describes the matching purse as snakeskin from Saks Fifth Avenue, but the shoes sure say they’re from Neiman-Marcus. Oh, and it doesn’t show here, but Phyllis had very narrow feet — these are a size 8 AAAA. Someone asked if I would be wearing them. Not hardly!
The painting I chose is quite lovely and I preferred it to the one drawing by Phyllis that Justine had on display. This was painted by someone else and given to Phyllis as a gift. It was a set of three and I felt bad about breaking up the set, but didn’t have room for three. Again, Justine was gracious and agreed to sell it singly. When I got home the next evening, I lined my prizes up on the sofa, along with the catalog, and took a picture:
Justine showed me another pair of Phyllis’s shoes which were quite glamorous — bright red with high spike heels. I don’t remember seeing Phyllis ever wear those or anything like them, but I wasn’t usually around when she got dressed up to go out at night. “They’re like the Ruby Slippers!” Justine joked. “Maybe I should put them in a glass case.” I don’t plan to put these shoes in a glass case — in fact, I don’t really know what I plan to do with them.
Although I’d had no intention of buying anything of Phyllis’s, now, looking at the shoes and remembering Phyllis wearing them with a lovely creamy silk dress, I’m glad I did. Thanks for the nudge, Micheline!
Shameless Plug – If you want to read about working for a celebrity, check out my book: “Beyond the Spotlight: On the Road with Phyllis Diller.” It’s available everywhere. Amazon has it at http://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Spotlight-Road-Phyllis-Diller/dp/0985972882