Felix In Hollywood

A Blog for the Smart Set

Monday, June 27, 2011

Ciro's Baby!

We've all heard about the fabled Sunset Strip nightspot where glamour was on the menu and star wattage was the cover charge.

Legends played that stage and played in that audience.  And since we've all heard about it you'll be relieved to know that an overview of the great Ciro's is not what were going to talk about today.

Kay Thompson and The Williams Brothers slay 'em in '47

Rosie Clooney, Jose Ferrer and Marlene Dietich can't put on 'photo face' one more time tonight, '55.

Before we get on to the topic du jour, I must say though, I have no idea when Ciro's owner William Wilkerson had time to darn his socks, the man owned and ran simply everything.  Very interesting cat; must do a piece on him one day.

Alright on to the business at hand.  A few days ago, I ran this picture:

on the Facebook tour company fan page because Abbe Lane was one hot dish and, well because I like the picture....by the way, this brings up another thought, why haven't more of you guys hopped over to that fanpage and hit the like button?  Really, I ask so little.  Do it when your done here would ya?....Sorry lost my train of thought for a sec (I hate it when you make me petulant).  Anyway, when I posted the shot, it caused quite a flurry.  And while I'm sure the flurry was more about Abbe's body than Ciro's (or in Norma Desmond's case the Jag in the background) it sent me on a Ciro's google-fest because that's how misguided I am sometimes.  Well it's a good thing I am, because it allowed me to dig up this little tidbit, just for you!

It seems that in 1951 a pretty young gal by the name of Margaret Barstow was employed as a Ciro's cigarette girl/hatcheck girl.

Margaret Barstow

Well, on the night of August 19, 1951 in the middle of the floor show, a panicked announcement came from the stage.  It was the old, "Is there a Doctor in the house!"  Now how or why they could let a girl in such an advanced state of "expecting" (to use the Hay's Office preferred term) continue to work nightly is beyond me, but I try to stay out of those things.  As luck would have it, Dr. Bert Tardius was indeed in the house and, wasting not one precious moment,  ushered Margaret upstairs to a private dining room and delivered a bawling 6 pound 13 ounce baby girl.  The parents, expecting a boy, named the Ciro's progeny Rex, which is actually a very cool name for a girl.  I have not been able to find out if Ciro's named a drink after baby Rex, but unless there were two Margaret Barstows in Hollywood in the early fifties, it seems as though mama was able to parlay the notoriety into a couple of bit part appearances on the silver screen (From Here To Eternity, Artists and Models)  'cause that's how we roll here in Hollywood.


Barbara said...

If I could go back to that time, I'd be a cigarette girl too. Cool damned job!

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, we have an awful time with to, two and too, n'est-ce pas? But we love you anyway.

Michael in Iowa

FelixInHollywood said...

Dear Michael,

No, actually I have no difficulty discerning the proper use of the 'to' (too, two). I have a problem with multitasking (quite frankly I stink at it) and and rushing myself through posting a piece. Also, I'm a horrible proofreader.

I found one error and have corrected it. Since you were so kind as to alert me, perhaps you might let me know if I've missed any others. Much love right back to (too, two) you!

normadesmond said...

now THAT'S a story!

jason said...

very cool story indeed.

Anonymous said...

Psssst, Jose. Not Mel.