“I owe Marilyn Monroe a real debt,” Ella Fitzgerald would muse. “It was because of her that I played the Mocambo, a very popular nightclub in the ’50s. She personally called the owner of the Mocambo, and told him she wanted me booked immediately, and if he would do it, she would take a front table every night. She told him – and it was true, due to Marilyn’s superstar status – that the press would go wild. The owner said yes, and Marilyn was there, front table, every night. The press went overboard. After that, I never had to play a small jazz club again. She was an unusual woman – a little ahead of her times. And she didn’t know it.”
Posted Monday, May 28, 2007, 4:58 PM by Lonely Planet
Española in New Mexico is a decent little place - surely no one's idea of purgatory. On the main road through town, a flashing neon sign alternates from grinning white angel to a sizzling red smirking devil.
The Saints and Sinners liquor store has been idling on this stretch of the Taos highway since 1963, its flaking pitchfork-mounted beacon luring customers of both persuasions. Inside, locals help themselves to drinks and linger at a lone wooden table by the door. In a little taste of heaven, all bar tabs are paid on the honour system.
Back on the border with Mexico, Marilyn Monroe may be dead, but she's taking up a heck of a lot of space in Douglas, Arizona. At the Grand Cafe, the iconic blonde still pouts and poses, posthumously snapping up the entire wall surface in the Mexican restaurant's dining room. A previous owner began collecting the images, but her successors and various employees have continued to add to the collection, which now clocks in at more than 200 sultry photos. Glossy movie stills and French-language movie posters jostle for attention above diners and then spill down through the back hallway. The best detail? The men's restroom is for 'Gentlemen'
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