Marilyn Monroe Cut-Out Keeps Corvette Driver 'Feeling Young'
GREENPOINT — Just because his wife sits at home watching television doesn't mean Bob Germino lacks a lady on wild jaunts in his white Corvette — in fact, he's got one of the most striking head-turners of all.
"I feel like I'm on a date...I've got to have a nice looking blonde with me," boasted the proud 76-year-old driver as he leaned against his Marilyn Monroe cut-out in his 1989 convertible's passenger seat. "It keeps me young."
Germino, who climbed into his posh high-speed ride Tuesday afternoon down the street from his Greenpoint apartment, said he purchased his red-lipped beauty in her fiery halter gown online — and that even her cardboard version was a symbol of glamour.
"She'd always be in a Corvette," reminisced Germino, a lifelong North Brooklyn resident who's idolized Monroe since he first saw her. "She's from my day."
And now Germino carts Monroe along with him around the city and to car shows, whether in his Corvette or in his other vintage ride, a red 1957 Chevy adorned with flames.
"I've also got Elvis and James Dean," bragged Germino of his other cut-outs that accompany Monroe in the Chevy he's had since 2001. "I just go cruisin'."
Germino, who got into cars after retiring from work for the city's Department of Environmental Protection, said he's won dozens of trophies in shows with the celebrities at his side.
"When I retired I did a lot of gambling in Atlantic City, and my son said 'Get yourself a hobby,'" recalled Germino of the impetus. "My wife stays home, but as long as I'm out of the house and she's watching her [television] shows she's fine."
Germino said he brings Monroe to 42nd Street in Manhattan, where tourists fawn over his car and his cardboard companion, but his favorite destination is Coney Island.
No matter what, the stunner is both a comfort and an instant icebreaker.
"She gets people talking."