The beginning and end of my modeling career
|oops...correction: actually October 1963|
And of course we always went shopping for new clothes. In the summer of 1968 I was in the children's department at Lord & Taylor on 5th Avenue trying on dresses with my mom and grandmother. Suddenly a couple of ladies approached Mom and asked her whether she'd be willing to let her little girl pose for a photo session modeling some clothes for an hour or so. (If that happened today, surely you'd think it was some sort of scam and immediately call for store security.) Grandma and Mom were excited.
Well, that was weird. But OK....
So I followed this lady down into the back hallways of the store where I met what I thought was a beautiful model wearing way more eye liner than my mother had ever owned in her lifetime. They put me in this too small raincoat that I remember thinking was so expensive, I'd never be allowed to own it...(besides the fact that in my family you always bought coats on the humongous side to allow for growth) I was led to a courtyard patio where women having lunch at the store luncheonette were watching us out the windows. I was told to observe the pretty model lady and just sort of do what she did. I am fairly certain I was chosen for this gig because I was wearing my shiny new Mary Janes with those goofy little white socks. (The kind that always got stretched out and crept down into your shoes when you walked.)
After about an hour of this posing and standing around, I was returned to Mom and Grandma, and we went about our day. A few weeks later a $15 check arrived in the mail. ("Man, what a cake job!," I thought.)
Then Grandma sent us a pile of clippings from the New York Times style section. Ah, my fifteen minutes of fame. No one was more excited than my New Yorker mother.
For a bit I was convinced that a modeling career was in my future. Then reality hit when I realized I had knock knees, a rather prominent nose and would never grow taller than 5 foot 2 and three quarters. Ah well. It was fun while it lasted.
Just remember girls, whenever you go shopping in The Big City, be sure to wear clean socks and your best Mary Janes. You never know when you might be "discovered".