Lauren Bacall book signing sighting

A few days ago Lauren Bacall passed away. I think Murder on the Orient Express was my first Lauren Bacall movie, but screened on television. One of those nights spent watching movies with my parents in the living room. It had long premiered in movie theatres by then. Honestly I don’t think I’ve ever watched Lauren Bacall on the big screen, only on television and computers. What a shame to still not have seen her on 35mm.

How to Marry a Millionaire was my second Bacall film as a child. Then I graduated to the Bogie and Bacall pictures that my dad loved. Later to Young Man with a Horn, Sex and the Single GirlMisery and Pret-A-Porter. Since her death, I’ve watched her in Roddy McDowall home movies uploaded on youtube. They are fascinating scenes from McDowall’s parties in the summer of 1965. I think Bacall is in almost all of them. Other guests included Natalie WoodKirk Douglas, Anthony Perkins, Tuesday Weld, George Cukor, Jane Powell, Paul Newman and more.

I did get the chance to see her in Atlanta in the 1990s after reading in the paper she would appear at then iconic Oxford Bookstore for a book signing. I couldn’t drive but desperately had to see her. I took a bus that was a long 3-4 hours round trip. I stood there watching her sign books. She looked at my direction probably thinking I was weird. I left empty-handed aside from a memory.

I regret not buying a book to have her sign it. I don’t even know if I had money to spare. I was just a kid new to the world. I probably thought I’d make a lot of money in a few years and have the means to meet all my old time celebrities. Little did I know, I ‘d remain poor although now I can afford to buy her book to get autographed when it’s too late.