Before I describe the gravestone smooch, I will give a bit of background on Dean. He was a famous actor who is best known for his angsty role in "Rebel Without a Cause." His other big films include "East of Eden" and "Giant." Before he went to Hollywood, he was raised on a Fairmount farm by his aunt and uncle. At 24, he was famously killed in a car accident. His good looks, strong but short lived career, and untimely death created his posthumous cult following.
|Rebel Without a Cause|
Best lines: "You can't be idealistic all your life, son"
Dean: "Except to yourself."
Step 1. Choose a lipstick shade.
This was way too easy. I only own one tube of lipstick, so I went with my Red Rouge lipstick from Mary Kay.
Step 2. Locate the grave site in Farmount's Park Cemetery just north of town.
This was a lot more difficult than it sounds. Considering how small the town of Fairmount is, I assumed that locating the grave site would be a no brainer. At the very least, I expected a sign pointing out James Dean's tombstone. No such luck. The cemetery sprawls and thousands of markers sprinkled the grounds.
|Not the best representation, but the Cemetery is surprisingly big.|
I am sure that Carolyn J. McGrew was a wonderful woman, but she was not James Dean. So the search continued.
My mom spotted a minivan a few yards away and thought that they might be visiting the Dean grave site. We creepily followed the van and lo and behold, it was stopped in front of the tombstone! Just as we arrived, the van drove off (coincidence? doubtful), ending the 15+ minute search in solitude.
|Okay, so this doesn't look anything like Ms. McGrew's headstone|
Oh well it was worth a laugh
With an exultant shout, we hopped out of the car and took turns tinting our pouts. I even forced my brother to do it. It was possibly the highlight of the trip.
Step 3. Pucker up.
With the lipstick taken care of, I did the illogical and kissed the tombstone.
|Proof for all of the Doubting Thomases|
Maybe I am lacking a fit conscience, but guilt never even crossed my mind.
I am still a bit confused as to why this made the list. I understand that James Dean is an iconic Hoosier and there is something unexpected and therefore comical about kissing a gravestone, but I found it to be an odd way to pay respects. To each his own I suppose. And it will definitely make for an unusual anecdote in the future.