Being an audiophile has come in waves in my life. I tend to be like that with my interests, visiting each one cyclically. Even with the research that I do, there are cycles, but they are far more frequent.
With the sad news of the passing of a hi-fi retailer, who was, in effect, a mentor to me, I learned something new.
My audiophile adventures caused me to cross paths with a supermodel!
How so? you ask.
Allow me to explain.
Being an audiophile – first steps
Some time after I had purchased my first quality turntable, a friend told me that a family by the name of Macpherson owned the store. But it wasn’t so much the name of the owners that prompted my friend’s comment but the fact that they were the parents of the famous model, Elle.
Elle Macpherson was a really popular model in her day, apparently. Possessing almost a swimmer’s figure, athletic with strong shoulders and thin hips, she was certainly unique and striking in her era.
I actually had a chance to meet the Australian supermodel of the ‘fifties, Miss June Dally-Watkins, who sadly has also recently passed. When I asked her to name her favorite model, her first choice, surprisingly to me, was Elle Macpherson.
A wonderful mentor to a budding audiophile
Reading the obituary of the hi-fi retailer, whom I knew as Joe, brought back a lot of memories. He had a collection of 20,000 records! When he decided to reduces this number of records in his possession, I was able to acquire fifty of them, which he had only played a few times. (How could it be otherwise?)
Joe was not only an audiophile but also a collector of rare hi-fi equipment. On one occasion he showed me a ‘special order only’ Nakamichi cassette deck – gold-plated! As his business steadily grew, this gentleman also never seemed to lose his connection with other enthusiasts.
An audiophile from an older generation once told me.: “You were right to get involved in the hobby while you were young.” His hearing had deteriorated, you see.
However, it can be an expensive interest for a young man to pursue. This leads me to an especially fond recollection of this retailer, one of many good memories. I had been wanting a certain component, but the price was always just beyond my budget.
While admiring the component one day, Joe said to me, “I’m feeling generous today. Twenty percent off if you’re interested. “
I certainly was!
So, it is with deep sadness that I learned of Joe’s passing.
From running a store at an obscure address, he had grown into a national distributor as well.
Significantly, the obituary included another name from my hi-fi past – Elle Macpherson also shopped at his store.
Did her family really own the other store? I’m not completely sure, but the fact that she had patronised this retailer’s shop, tells me that she must be an audiophile too.
Being an audiophile is a great interest, the expense being offset by the longevity of good equipment. Some older gear is perhaps more reliable. The new trend towards surface-mount electronics means that restoration of the new gear will not be as easy.
Perhaps more mature supermodels are also more resilient than the recent crop. Judging from the photo that I’ve seen, Elle Macpherson is prettier than ever.
I once met a fellow who abandoned the hobby because his wife could not just sit and listen ( to music with him.)
No problem for Elle, apparently.
If you are a regular reader of this blog, you may recall that I was working on a screenplay for Linda Evangelista (see Linda Evangelista and the Supermodel Bomber).
People sometimes comment that today’s actresses lack the glamour of stars from the past.
Well, perhaps more mature supermodels are the answer.
More elegant, middle-aged actresses.
Mmmmn, perhaps I am on a mission.
2. Elle Macpherson. Image by Eva Rinaldi, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons