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The “Six Feet Under” Flower Shop – One of the Last Places James Dean Was Seen Alive

Dec 17th, 2010 | By | Category: TV Locations

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I promise to get back to my wedding blogging in the near future, but for today I thought I’d do a post about a location that I stalked this past weekend – the Blossom d’Amour flower shop where Ruth Fisher (aka Frances Conroy) worked on the hit HBO television series Six Feet Under.  While doing some research on the Fisher & Sons Funeral Home from the series, which I blogged about back in October, I came across the IMDB trivia page for the show which stated that Ruth’s floral shop was actually a former gas station – but not just any gas station.  As it turns out, it is the station where James Dean stopped to fill up the tank of his Porsche 550 Spyder on the afternoon of September 30, 1955 while on his way to Salinas where he was scheduled to participate in a car race.  The twenty-four year old actor was tragically killed just a few hours later, at approximately 5:45 p.m., when his Porsche collided with a Ford Tudor driven by a man named Donald Turnupseed at the intersection of Highways 46 and 41 in Cholame, California.  For whatever reason, that gas station was later transformed into a floral shop/car wash named A Touch of Romance and it was that floral shop that was eventually featured on Six Feet Under.  Quite a bit of history for a tiny, non-descript florist located on a sleepy corner of L.A.’s San Fernando Valley! 

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I was hoping that there would be some sort of plaque or photograph on display commemorating the shop’s  unique and storied history, but, sadly, I couldn’t find anything of the sort while I was stalking the place.  It is absolutely mind-boggling to me that a person could very well get their car washed at this location or purchase some flowers for a loved one without ever realizing that they were standing on hallowed ground!

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It became even more mind-boggling to me when I found out that a picture of Dean had actually been taken on that fateful day while he was gassing up his car!  As fate would have it, photographer Sanford Roth was traveling with the actor to Salinas to document his race and he happened to snap a photograph of Dean while at the service station.  I think it goes without saying that if I owned that shop, I would have a HUMONGOUS copy of that photograph on display so that my customers would know the significance and the history of the property.  Geez, why do I always have to think of everything??  Smile

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In the Season 1 episode of Six Feet Under titled “Brotherhood”, Ruth gets a job working at the Blossom d’Amour floral shop and she continues to work there throughout much of the show’s second season.  She also ends up becoming romantically involved with the shop’s Russian owner, Nikolai, for a time.  And I am very happy to report that the shop still looks pretty much exactly the same today as it did when Six Feet Under was being filmed.

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For those who are interested in locations of this sort, I HIGHLY recommend picking up a copy of Chris Epting’s two books James Dean Died Here: The Locations of America’s Pop Culture Landmarks and Marilyn Monroe Dyed Here: More Locations of America’s Pop Culture Landmarks (I LOVE that last title, by the way!), both of which were gifted to me by fellow stalker Lavonna a few months back.  They are FABULOUS books which feature hundreds of famous – and infamous – locations.  I just discovered that Epting also recently released a third book in the series, Elvis Presley Passed Here: Even More Locations of America’s Pop Culture Landmarks, so guess which item has just been added to this stalker’s Christmas list!  Winking smile  

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  Smile

Stalk It: A Touch of Romance, aka the Six Feet Under flower shop, aka the gas station where James Dean filled his Porsche with gas on his fated last day, is located at 14325 Ventura Boulevard in Sherman Oaks.

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5 comments

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  1. Erin says:

    I believe the Manson group also stopped by this station to clean up the night of the Tate murders. Not a nice bit of trivia, but there you go.

    • Richard says:

      You’re right Erin, I just found out myself and I lived in Sherman Oaks for the past 20 years. I also just found out about the gas station also. I’ve bought flowers from here many times, don’t know why they don’t let people know the history of this place.

  2. Lavonna says:

    Lindsay,
    Great blog…I didn’t know that was the gas station. We were going to drive out to Cholame on one of our visits but never got around to doing it. We did go to Fairmount, Indiana years ago to the James Dean festival. We toured the town, saw the farm he grew up on and his burial site. Thanks for a great post. I never watched Six Fee Under but to know that James Dean was there is just to cool…and I agree I’d have a billboard there if I owned the place.

  3. Chris Epting says:

    Thanks for mentioning my books – glad you enjoyed them :)

    ce

    • Lavonna says:

      I love your books..I have the two mentioned above along with – Elvis Presley Passed Here, Led Zeppelin Crashed Here, The Birth Place Book and The Ruby Slippers, Madonna’s Bra and Einstein’s Brain: The Locations of America’s Pop Culture Artifacts. These books are fabulous and a MUST for any “stalker” or fan of famous sites.


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