Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Gewgaw, Organ Grinder



As a child, my parents would take a regular trip to downtown Los Angeles to Chinatown, where we'd shop the only chinese grocery store within a 20 mile radius. I recall seeing a street performer that was there almost every time we'd go. I called him the 'monkey grinder' (which now brings to mind an image of some hapless monkey going through a meat grinder, yuck.) We'd hand pennies to the little monkey.

This little ceramic piece is a stereotypical Eye-talian organ grinder, who handily dispenses powdered cheese.

1 comment:

Valerie said...

I too remember - and vividly so - the "monkey grinder" - as I also called him - he was there in the early to mid 60's I believe. I've called the Chinatown Historical Society to get a photograph of him - they have yet to call back (poor follow up on phone calls) Seriously, I've wanted a photo of him and his monkey for the LONGEST time!

Valerie
San Pedro, CA