In the early 1990’s, I used to sell movie memorabilia in a co-op shop called Glamour Streets, located in Tampa’s Ybor City. The back of the place was leased out to a tattoo parlor, and for some strange reason, in addition to props, autographs, smoking paraphernalia and other stuff, we also sold a smattering of vintage and kooky original clothing. The place didn’t last long — the everything-bagel-of-a-store closed in, I think, 1994 or 1995. The storefront, as it exists today (image from Google Maps):
On one visit to check in on my stuff, the manager told me I’d just missed Emo Phillips, who’d bought one of the baby doll head shirts one of our sellers had made. As a comedy fan, I was bummed to have missed Emo (whose E=MO2 Album was one of my all-time favorites), but somehow the fates decided to make it up to me. While out to dinner that night, who should walk in wearing the baby doll shirt but the man himself. You can see from his expression below that he was quite proud of his quirky new acquisition.
The shirt featured paint and fabric flowers springing up, the largest one in the front sporting a charmingly creepy rubber doll face… I can’t remember if it was glued or stitched into place.
Detail (don’t stare too long, lest you be hypnotized):
The blurriness of the close-up is more than made up for by personal touch to the story.
There’s no question I would’ve bought this shirt had I seen it. I cannot attest to being the world’s biggest Emo Phillips fan though… but that shirt certainly makes me swoon.
Back in the mid-80s I built the “Mole Mobile” Emo Phillips used in a remake of “Journey to the Center of the Earth”. I just realized that I don’t have any photos of it online. It was a full-size car. I made a mold of the hood of my 1955 Studebaker Commander and the front of a 1950 bullet-nose Stude and attached them to the body of a Volkswagon Bug and customized on top of that. I definitely have to post those photos at some point. If only one of your remote controls could run it. Ooooh, but now that I think about it I actually had a motorized model made of it. The model shop working on the movie made an exact scale replica of it. Then, several years later, Steve Perlman, who would go on to invent Web TV, built a remote control for me. I definitely have to find that.
I remembered I had this image as I was getting psyched up to see Judy Tenuta at the Improv Saturday — clearly a subconscious trigger relating to their past couplehood. Apropos of nothing, Judy was every bit as good as she was when I saw her twenty years ago, if not better.
Would love to see that “Mole Mobile!”
Oh, yes… and that blurry closeup of mine — sorry ’bout that, but there’s nothing like a cellphone shot of a detail of a 5×7 photo to make you think you’re losing your eyesight. This was about my third attempt.