It's been said mutual interests bolster a relationship, and one of the many things that bonded Carole Lombard and Clark Gable was their fondness for horses. Over the years, we've run a number of equine-related photos of Lombard and Gable, and here are two more (both up for auction at eBay):
It's Feb. 26, 1938, and Clark and Carole are at Santa Anita in Arcadia to watch the Santa Anita Derby, an important race on the West Coast thoroughbred schedule. The race was won by Stagehand, trained by the legendary Earl Sande; a week later, Stagehand defeated Seabiscuit in the Santa Anita Handicap to become the only horse to win both major races in the same year.
Gable and Lombard were semi-regulars at Santa Anita; in 1940, they watched the 7-year-old Seabiscuit win the Handicap. But their interest in horses went beyond the racetrack. For proof, here they are in June 1938, at a horse show in the San Fernando Valley, and the snipe indicates some of their filmland cohorts were there, too:
This was likely taken the same day as a pic we've run before, because their outfits are identical:
As stated earlier, the pictures with snipes -- testimony to their original status -- are being auctioned. Bids on each begin at $19.99, bidding closes Saturday, just after 6:15 p.m. (Eastern) on Saturday. For the Santa Anita photo, go to http://www.ebay.com/itm/1938-Clark-Gable-Carole-Lombard-Hollywood-Actor-News-Photo-2-/130583157135?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1e675cd98f; for the horse show pic, see http://www.ebay.com/itm/1938-Clark-Gable-Carole-Lombard-Hollywood-Actor-News-Photo-/130583157126?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1e675cd986.
All this equine talk brought a song back to my mind, because its lyrics contain the phrase "just sit and play the horses." It's "Easy Street" by Julie London, one of the highlights from her first album, "Julie Is Her Name" in December 1955 (featuring the hit single "Cry Me A River"). Two of the great jazz session men -- Barney Kessel on guitar, Ray Leatherwood on bass -- provide an intimate background that wonderfully complemented London's voice. Great stuff.