Monday, October 12, 2009

The James Bond of ventriloquist dummies

"Lot #3: My Danny O’Day ventroloquist’s doll circa 1970 testifies to my nerddom. He came with an instructional album and booklet by Jimmy Nelson, a professional ventroloquist who was mentored by the ventroloquist master Paul Winchell, so that I could learn how to be a ventroloquist too. (I love that Danny is wearing a smoking jacket and an ascot – like he’s the James Bond of ventroloquist dummies who’s gonna get lucky later on tonight.) My parents gave him to me for Christmas along with a dressing table chair covered in white fake fur, new pajamas and a robe, probably a Barbie with dazzling Barbie outfits and accessories, books and candy. I remember that Christmas because it was the most extravagant one we ever had. My father had landed a great new job earlier that year, and my parents splurged. We all went to Marshall Field’s and helped my mother pick out a fur coat. By the next Christmas, my dad had gotten laid off."
(Aug. 21, 2009, wunderkammer)

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