The Venice Film Festival is typically in late August/early September — right in that Labor Day region for us — so why was Getty Images putting together an album of Venice moments? I don’t know; probably because the festival just announced it is still planning to proceed as scheduled. But I’m glad it did, because I leafed through it just for kicks and found this photo of British bombshell Diana Dors, an actress and singer, floating along the canals in a MINK BIKINI. As one does. And it sets quite a scene, one that I thought I might hold onto for the coming summer months.
But then I fell down a Diana Dors Wikipedia rabbit hole. See, when I was a kid, the church Mom took us to in Englefield Green was the same one Diana Dors attended with her then-husband, Alan Lake. She sat in the first or second row, always, near the end of the pew, and I feel like I remember her always wearing white and possibly a fur — maybe my 6-year old mind invented that, but I know she seemed glamorous — and she always left right after Communion. Anyway, I vividly remember being told she was A Big Celebrity in our midst; the first thing anyone did when they arrived was check to see if she was there, and in hushed tones, or with a gentle nudge, we would all acknowledge the presence of Diana Dors. This has always stuck with me, even though she died a year after we started going there — in essence, my first celebrity sighting, though of course I didn’t have the language for it then. I never knew much about her, though, so when this picture turned up last night I started reading up on her, and a) she led quite a life, full of rapscallions, and b) she had an affair with a stuntman that led to the end of her first marriage, and when she then ended up cheating on HIM with Richard Dawson, the stuntman allegedly stole 11,000 pounds from her “cash box at Harrods” (!!) and sold his story to the media. That stuntman… is the same man from whom we bought our house in England in 1983, whose daughter grew up to become Tamara Mellon (and he also helped develop Vidal Sassoon, supposedly, though that seems to have ended with mutual lawsuits before he landed at Jimmy Choo with Tamara). His obituary is also A RIDE. (Oooh, apparently Tamara did not care for it one bit.) Anyway, it’s a rare thing when a Wikipedia rabbit hole plops you down right on your own front door mat.