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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Movies with Ida "Pumpkin" Duncan

This year I have seen move of the old traditional Christmas movies on TV then I recall seeing in a long time. From the numerous Scrooge versions to Christmas in Connecticut. AMC has been highlighting a few old perennials, Holiday Inn, White Christmas and A Miracle on 34th Street.

I remember the first time I saw Holiday Inn and White Christmas as a double bill on TV. It was back in the early 1960's. I was downstairs being babysat by our family friend and neighbor Ida Duncan. She had told me about the movies and invited me down to see them. The big thrill being she and her husband Duke had a color TV. I don't think I had ever seen anything on TV in color before. While I actually preferred the movie Holiday Inn, I was enthralled by the look and color of White Christmas. I think I also developed a slight crush on Rosemary Clooney. It was a great evening that I now relive everytime I see either of these movies.

I was very fond of Ida and even came up with the nickname "Pumpkin" Duncan for her. Granted it was silly but she and I enjoyed it. Eventually her and her husband moved to a small house which I seem to recall was off of Sepulveda near Roscoe. We kept in touch for a few years but as happens we eventually lost track of each other. The picture above is her next to her apartment below us at 13760 Sherman Way in Van Nuys.

Last time I looked on Google street view the apartment building was still there, looking much the same as it did back then. Merry Christmas to Ida wherever you are and the ghost of Christmas past.

 Ida Duncan 1960 above
 Ida and Duke Duncan above. Don't know who the child is.

Duke was a contractor. I once went with him to a job he had laying down a driveway. I was very young and probably not a lot of help. It may have been the first time I ever rode in a pickup truck, and now I own one

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