Meeting Mr. Plastic
How does a newlywed teenager become the mistress of a middle-aged fat cat?
This is one of the curiosities of the relationship between Vicki Morgan and Alfred Bloomingdale.
Half a dozen versions of their first meeting have been conjured up, most by Vicki herself. The consistent detail is that they met in the vicinity of the Old World Restaurant, a prototype health food café on Sunset Boulevard.
In one account, Vicki said she was walking near the restaurant when Bloomingdale stopped her with a very peculiar pickup line.
"Excuse me," he said, "but you look like a tennis player. I have a daughter about your age, and she's looking for a tennis partner."
Vicki said she reluctantly gave him her phone number so Lisa Bloomingdale could call her for a tennis appointment.
She claimed that as they were saying goodbye that day after a five-minute chat, Bloomingdale pressed into her palm a check for $8,000. He told her it was a spontaneous gift for a lovely girl who had brightened his day.
Vicki went home and showed the check to her husband.
Earle Lamm said the check was more likely a down payment on future favors from a dirty old man.
He was right.
Vicki never did hear from Lisa Bloomingdale. But Alfred began a telephone barrage, calling as often as 20 times a day for three weeks before she finally agreed to have lunch with him.
They met at the Old World. The affair was off and running.