Sigh. Just pose and get paid. And remember—nobody I know will ever see these photos.
This Technicolor lithograph published by Champion Line features Dolores Del Monte, Playboy magazine's centerfold for March 1954, in a shot entitled “Radiant Beauty.” Del Monte began her modeling career posing for the legendary photographer Bruno Bernard and the acclaimed pin-up painter Zoe Mozert, at times making as much as $50 a day. That was in 1951, when that pay rate was the equivalent of about $500 in today's money. A year later Del Monte quit modeling. In 1954 the above photo was offered to Playboy. Though Bruno Bernard shot it, the centerfold credited the John Baumgarth Company of Melrose Park, Illinois. Such are the entanglements of copyright. When Del Monte received a letter asking permission to use her likeness she assumed Playboy was a standard pin-up magazine, and the images requested were from a shoot she recalled where she wore a leopard pattern bathing suit. Wrong on both counts, and one can only imagine her reaction when the centerfold hit newsstands, since she was not only married but a mother by then. Well, at least she got the $50. And the world? It got something priceless. We have lots more classic Technicolor lithos, and you can see those by clicking here.
I’ll be so famous people will completely forget about that other Marilyn. Just wait and see.
When you hear the phrase “Marilyn Walk” you probably associate it with Marilyn Monroe’s distinctive sashay. That’s a fine image, but if your name happens literally to be Marilyn Walk then that means you went down in Hollywood history unremembered. We like to imagine Walk dreaming of catching her first big break and seeing an article about herself entitled “Walk of Fame.” It doesn’t seem as if that happened, but this shot by renowned lensman Bruno Bernard, aka Bernard of Hollywood, bestows a sort of fame upon Walk all by itself by making her image a rare collectible. It was probably made around 1955. And just in case you think we’re making up her name, the reverse of the photo appears below.
Update: We now think this is Playboy model Marilyn Waltz. The look is right, the time is right, and the name is close. She was probably trying out a pseudonym to dissociate herself from her centerfold appearances, which spanned February 1954 to April 1955. We're 95% on this.
Aww, we can’t believe how big she’s gotten.
A naked woman in a baby crib? From our 2012 perspective we think the whole idea is a bit deviant, but in 1963 presumably this photo from Bruno Bernard, aka Bernard of Hollywood, was totally innocuous, right? No, we didn’t think so either. Nude photography runs the gamut. Sometimes it depicts women as strong or even domineering, but more often it suggests that the perfect woman is pliant and childlike, so to us at least, going the extra step and putting the model in a crib is just a bit too overt for good taste. But we were not even zygotes in 1963 so we’re not trying to judge. The photo is pretty, and that’s really all we can say. The week’s quips, with observations from poet Carl Sandburg and actor Vincent Price, are below.
Dec 8: “A baby is God’s opinion that the world should go on.”—Carl Sandburg
Dec 9: “A lot of girls who can dish it out can’t cook it.”—Vincent Price
Dec 10: Behind every successful man there’s a woman nagging him he’s not so hot.
Dec 11: “Solo: A loud passage played by the orchestra leader’s brother-in-law.”—John Doremus
Dec 12: “Every time my mother-in-law comes to sleep at our house, I have breakfast in bed. I sleep in the kitchen.”—Bobby Ramsen
Dec 13: “The modern girl marries for keeps; she keeps on working and keeps house.”—Paul Fogarty
Dec 14: There’s no economy in going to bed early to save candles if the result is twins—Chinese Prov.
When she says jump you ask how high.
Some call it cheesecake, glamour, or even smut, but we prefer to call it preserving the ephemera of history. For instance, this image by the renowned mid-century photographer Bruno Bernard, aka Bernard of Hollywood, did not exist on the internet a moment ago. And now it does. See how that works? So think of us as archivists, and yourselves as researchers. That probably won’t help if someone sees you looking at this image, but hey, it’s worth a try.
Of late, when reading the Goodtime Weekly quips, we’ve been imagining them delivered as part of a stand-up show—i.e., followed by uproarious laughter. That actually helps a bit. When we obey the two drink minimum that helps even more. Next we’re going to steal a few of these lines and try them out in the real world. After all, the true test of a quip is whether actual living and breathing, flesh and blood humans laugh at it. So we’re going to give some of these a trial run and get back to you. Stay tuned.
Oct 13: Mother Nature still blushes before disrobing.
Oct 14: “Sometimes a man pulls the wool over his wife’s eyes with the wrong yarn.”—Mitch Miller
Oct 15: “Have you heard of an elephant that went on a diet? Now he’s eating like a horse.”—Peggie Castle
Oct 16: “The ten best years of a woman’s life are between her 25th and 26th birthday.”—Jerry Lester
Oct 17: “Overheard at a restaurant: ‘She promised to love, honor, and obey. Now I’d settle for only one.’”—Irv Kupcinet
Oct 18: “Every husband knows the best time to wash the dishes is right after his wife tells him.”—Paul Gibson
Oct 19: “Husbands are like furnaces. You have to watch them or they’ll go out.”—Sam Cowling
Hmm, maybe I should change this wallpaper.
Some well known photographers have contributed to the Goodtime Weekly Calendar, but the above image is by a true icon—Bruno Bernard, aka Bernard of Hollywood. The German-born Bernard possessed a doctorate in criminal psychology and had no formal photographic training, but after leaving Germany in 1937 was operating his own portrait studio within a year. His second studio was on Sunset Boulevard, and that’s where he worked for 25 years, along the way creating such iconic images as Marilyn Monroe’s Niagara and River of No Return promos, Lili St. Cyr’s Indian headdress and transparent bathtub shots, and portraits of virtually every star in mid-century Hollywood. The Goodtime Calendar has several other Bernard contributions, and you’ll see those as the year continues.
As a side note, you may be wondering why we’re showing you this second week of July image a week early. It’s because we’re headed off to Sevilla, Spain tomorrow for a week or so, and we won’t be posting during that time. Well, you never know. Probably we won’t. Depends on what we see. But anyway, we didn’t want our vacation to interrupt our Goodtime Weekly series, so you get this page a week early. You also get the quips a week early:
July 7: “When a man opens the car door for his wife, it’s either a new car or a new wife.”—Larry Attebery
July 8: When a pensive little thing gets married, she often becomes an expensive little thing.
July 9: “A psychiatrist is a man who doesn’t have to worry so long as other people do.”—Pat Buttram
July 10: “A Hollywood guy changes his name once, a dollar bill once in a while, and his girl once she gets wise.”—Joe Hamilton
July 11: A man is incomplete until he marries—then he’s really finished.
July 12: “Science is dandy, but what makes a world’s fair is sex and cotton candy.”—Gracie Hansen
July 13: Small town: a place where there’s no recreation for single folks once the sun goes down.
Update: Turns out the model is named Terry Higgins. We just discovered this in June 2015, but better late than never. At least you know we're always updating and refining the information on our site.
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
2011—Elizabeth Taylor Dies
American actress Elizabeth Taylor, whose career began at age 12 when she starred in National Velvet
, and who would eventually be nominated for five Academy Awards as best actress and win for Butterfield 8
and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
of congestive heart failure in Los Angeles. During her life she had been hospitalized more than 70 times.
1963—Profumo Denies Affair
In England, the Secretary of State for War, John Profumo, denies any impropriety with showgirl Christine Keeler and threatens to sue anyone repeating the allegations. The accusations involve not just infidelity, but the possibility acquaintances of Keeler might be trying to ply Profumo for nuclear secrets. In June, Profumo finally resigns from the government after confessing his sexual involvement with Keeler
and admitting he lied to parliament.
1978—Karl Wallenda Falls to His Death
World famous German daredevil and high-wire walker Karl Wallenda, founder of the acrobatic troupe The Flying Wallendas, falls to his death attempting to walk on a cable strung between the two towers of the Condado Plaza Hotel in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Wallenda is seventy-three years old at the time, but it is a 30 mph wind, rather than age, that is generally blamed for sending him from the wire.
2006—Swedish Spy Stig Wennerstrom Dies
Swedish air force colonel Stig Wennerström, who had been convicted in the 1970s of passing Swedish, U.S. and NATO secrets to the Soviet Union over the course of fifteen years, dies in an old age home at the age of ninety-nine. The Wennerström affair, as some called it, was at the time one of the biggest scandals
of the Cold War.
The federal penitentiary located on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay closes. The island had been home to a lighthouse, a military fortification, and a military prison over the years. In 1972, it would become a national recreation area open to tourists, and it would receive national landmark designations in 1976 and 1986.
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