Not too many more hours after this is written, the world we inhabit will experience something it hasn't seen in more than a quarter-century -- and no, it has nothing to do with the "fiscal cliff" under debate on Capitol Hill. Rather, it will be the arrival of 2013...marking the first time since 1987 that the year will be represented by four different digits. Some of you never have experienced such a condition.
Okay, that has nothing to do with the photo above, in which Carole Lombard poses fetchingly in tennis whites. It's Paramount p1202-1452 from late 1936, an image I've never seen before. While we've seen many Lombard tennis pix over the years, this has some new information about her, courtesy of a snipe on the back:
No wonder she chose that site earlier in 1936 after realizing her beloved Hollywood Boulevard home didn't offer the privacy she sought for trysts with new beau Clark Gable. Seclusion, plus tennis court, sealed the deal.
Here's what the photo looks like in its entirety, albeit shown at an angle:
Who can we thank for this relative rarity? A relative. Here's the seller's story:
"This belonged to my great step-grandmother. In the '30s, she dated a bigwig in Hollywood; he gave her this photo, along with many more to be listed. I was cleaning things out and found them in an old trunk of my grandmother's."
Did the bigwig work at Paramount? I suppose he did if most of the upcoming photos are from that studio (and let's hope there are a few more Lombards!). It's an 8" x 10" original said to be in excellent condition. The seller adds:
"Some curling at ends, some slight corner bends, does not lay completely flat. Left corner is bent."
You can buy the photo straight up for $99.95, or make a bid beginning at $85.95. The auction ends at 12:50 a.m. (Eastern) Jan. 7. It's a nice way to ring in the new year for any Lombard (or tennis) fan. Discover all the details at http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-OLD-PHOTO-CAROLE-LOMBARD-ORGINAL-1936-/330851606877?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4d084ae15d.
And best wishes to all of you for a happy, healthy, safe and productive 2013.