Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Sightings of a Billboard Queen
Fabulous Friend Eddie thought she was an urban myth, at first. He almost choked on his own astonishment when I pointed out Angelyne in a Hollywood hotel lobby, almost twenty years ago.
One of the fun things about working in HollyWeird, nowadays, is that I still get to see Angelyne, now and then, or her conspicuous pink Corvette, at least. If you're ever on Sunset Blvd. and Argyle, grab a cuppa joe at The Coffee Bean and keep an eye out for the immaculately polished Barbie 'vette with the license plate 'ANGLYNE.'
I remember reading about Angelyne in the eighties. She claimed she was the first person to be famous for absolutely nothing. It wasn't true, but I can never remember who got first dibs on that dubious status.
I miss her Hollywood billboards. They were trashy and fabulous, in a low-budget-porn kinda' way. In the billboard photos, she was busty, big-butty, scantily clad, and she wore way too much make-up. Her teased-up bottle blond tresses were beyond trailer trash fabulous. She was reverse chic, in the eighties.
Even if Angelyne didn't rack up more than a few film credits, such as her cameo appearance in "Earth Girls are Easy" (as herself), she became firmly entrenched as a Hollywood icon in the minds of most locals, such as myself.
It takes more effort to spot an Angelyne billboard, now. The last one I saw wasn't even a photo. It was a painting which was more of an ideal representation of Angelyne than of the actual one. The girl's been around for a few decades, so it was understandable.
The local living legend is on a downhill slide and picking up speed. A recent sighting of her at The Coffee Bean confirmed that several layers of make up are still deliberately applied before appearing in public. I only saw her through her Corvette window, driver's side, so I didn't get too close of a look. The poor soul. Her skin made me think of partially melted plastic on a Barbie Doll, to whom Angelyne has compared herself. At least the surface of her Corvette is ever youthful.
And her look has remained consistent, as well, for probably the last quarter century.
She is too easy to criticize. Unkind remarks about her are easy to find online.
She is an underdog, and that's why I root for her.