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Aug '11

Cheeky Controversy

Whattya starin' at? Tourists feel no need for subtlety at Marilyn Monroe's famous "Seven Year Itch" scene recreated on Chicago's Magnificent Mile. (Photo credit: Michael Yen -- click pic for close-up view)

SUBMITTED BY: Various Artists   LOCATION: Chicago, Illinois (2011)

Is the 26-foot tribute to Marilyn Monroe a magnet for pop culture perverts or just harmless fun?

Our Tacky Tourist correspondents report there is plenty of evidence to support both scenarios.

“Although the sculpture itself isn’t anything groundbreaking and it would probably be better located in New York, it definitely causes a reaction,” says photographer Michael Yen, who analyzes tourists on a scale of Coy-to-Crude on his Facebook page. “I like the statue because it does that.”

“It was interesting to see people boldly go up and take it all in or decide to stay in front of the statue and not take a peek — and then perhaps go and take a peek anyway,” he adds.

Yen reports that he saw some fellow visitors pretending to lick Marilyn’s feet, noting it “gives people a free pass to act however they want.”

Some gregarious tourists expressed just pure joy about the giant fiberglass actress invading the Windy City.

Photo by Dan Eidsmoe (Click for larger image)

Others, like Casual Briefcase Guy, acted like Marilyn’s legs were just another thing to lean on, like a lamp post or telephone pole.

Photo by Fredy Peralta (Click for larger image).

Nothing bonds a couple closer together than wrapping around a gorgeous calf.

Photo by Ewa Malcher (Click for larger image)

And if you’ve been married for a really long time, you have to look down and pretend not to notice things like this.

Photo by Dan Eidsmoe (Click for larger image)

Photographer Dan Eidsmoe says he doesn’t think Marilyn’s sex appeal stretches well at 26 feet. “The attraction will wear off rather quickly,” he predicts. “The face and hair of the statue are very plastic looking.  Have you ever eaten at a Big Boy restaurant?”

Plastic or not, foot fetishists will be very disappointed by the World’s Grimiest Pedicure. As an aside, check out the diamond-studded flip-flops on the three-legged woman to the right of this kid’s Crocs.

Photo by John Picken (Click for larger image).

(Marilyn Monroe is supposed to be towering over Chicago until the spring of 2012. She replaces the American Gothic couple in Tribune Towers Plaza.)

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