[Under Construction] Still Under Construction... digging those holes

When I was growing up in Burbank, my mother used to take visitors to next-door Glendale so they could see Forest Lawn. I always wondered why she wanted to show off our premier graveyard; why not take them to Disneyland or Knott's Berry Farm instead? Back in the 1950s, Forest Lawn was a maudlin, soppy, insipid mess of quasi-religious inspiration. A recorded baritone voice boomed out at you, at unexpected times and places in the park, advising you of the magnificent work of art you are now viewing... as created by the world-renowned artist Professor Pasta-Brickbat, or some other dubious name you've never heard of before or since. (I still get laughs from my being able to put on my "radio voice" and intone the inspiring messages of hope as expounded back in those days...) Thankfully, since the death of it's ebullient founder Hubert Eaton, the place has taken on a more subdued and calm appearance. They still won't let you into many of the interment places on the property (unlike Hollywood Forever and Hillside which are celebrity-visitor-friendly) but the Park is still something like you won't see elsewhere. It's southern California at its screwiest.


The unveiling of the "exact replica" of Michaelangelo's David by Dr Eaton and Dr Rufus B. VonKleinschmid in 1948. You'll note that Victorian prudishness obliged David to wear a fig leaf; not exactly like the original. Fortunately, the 1971 Sylmar earthquake toppled this sloppy copy and the Board had the good taste to restore David's penis to him in the replacement now on view at the Park in all his original, faithful, anatomically proper male genitalia, just as his gay sculptor meant.


Doctor Charles Frye Sanborn, otherwise unknown to posterity except that he coughed up for the Paradise Sarcophagus, located in the Great Mausoleum. See, you CAN buy immortality...


A 1930s postcard of the Little Church of the Flowers

and the Wee Kirk o' the Heather