Sunday, April 02, 2006

More Marvin

In 1985, not long after Gaye was shot dead by his father, I was employed by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art when a new co-worker was hired; an attractive Latina woman who had apparently covered the amorous waterfront. For not only was she the wife of a well-known Golden Era MGM producer-director, but, word quickly spread around the office, she had been Marvin Gaye's "last old lady." But hardly a day goes by in Lotusland where one doesn't run into some starry-eyed individual claiming just such a brush with greatness. Was this indeed the woman who cropped up in a lot of Gaye's obits; the one who was in the process of suing the singer, claiming that had beaten her in late 1982 and early 1983? In her deposition against the star, she had also said that on one of these occasions he had taken a diamond ring and carved a message in the windshield of her car. And so. . .having nothing better to do with my hours after quitting time, I donned my deerstalker hat and shades and at a discrete distance followed Gaye's alleged inamorata to the parking garage to ascertain which was her car. She got into a nice, upscale late model car, which I now was able to inspect the next day. When I did, my heart skipped a beat as I gazed upon the grand, iconic gesture of one of undisputed giants of American secular music. Smack across the driver's line of sight, Gaye's rage resonated from beyond the grave in big, bold jagged letters: F**k You. Was she hanging onto the windshield for reasons of sentiment, or poverty? Or was it just a jury exhibit for a still-in-progress claim against Marvin Gaye's estate. I never mustered the nerve to ask her. No doubt today that windshield would fetch a tidy sum on ebay. back