Advertisement

The Queen of My Self

The Queen of My Self

Calendar Girls

 

It is summer, hot and horny, and I am on a roll. So I am going to continue this theme of beauty, attraction, seduction, sex, love and self-love until I run out of content!

 

In 1998 Angela Baker of Yorkshire Dales, England, lost her husband to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. As a tribute to the memory of John Baker, she and ten of her colleagues from the Women’s Institute decided to raise money for leukemia and lymphoma research. But how?

Someone had the bold and brazen idea to put out a nude calendar of themselves — normally conventional, sedate ladies in their middle years. The youngest was 47 and the oldest, 65. Wearing little more than a smile and a trademark set of pearls, they were photographed in typical scenes, their modesty protected only by a baby-grand piano, a teapot and sprouting broccoli on a vegetable patch.

The self-published calendar was released officially on April 12, 1999. It was an instant sensation with the first printing selling out in a week. 10,000 more copies were made during a massive second printing and that was gone after just three more weeks. Word spread quickly about the calendar, and the international press soon jumped on the story.

By December of 1999, just nine months after its launch, the calendar had sold 88,000 copies, and raised some $550,000 for leukemia research. That number has grown significantly since then, especially after Workman Publishing released an American version of the calendar.

In an interview John Baker’s wife, Calendar Girl Angela Baker, said the following, “We are constantly amazed at the response we had, and still get, to our Calendar. I cannot believe that we were able to raise so much money and I am delighted that it is being spent on such worthwhile research. I know that John would be tremendously honored to know that we have achieved so much…”

Over the next decade, they found themselves traveling the world, being portrayed in a West End play and by Dame Helen Mirren in a film, and have now raised around £2 million for Leukemia Research.

Meanwhile, almost every fire brigade and sports team in the United Kingdom have followed their lead.

Actress Glenda Jackson was one of the calendar’s sponsors, which likely helped to ignite interest. Jackson is a member of the British Parliament where she serves as Labor MP for Hamstead and Highgate. She is the only British Parliament Member to have won an Oscar.

Six members of the Yorkshire-based Women’s Institute with a combined age of 379-years old have been reunited for a new 2010 calendar in living color. Now “we definitely have to have bigger props,” joked Queen Baker, 63, who can be seen playing the piano in February. She continued, “I was a bit apprehensive about color, because older women can look a bit funny in color, and we wanted it to be just as good as the first one. Then, when I did see it in color, I thought ‘Well, maybe, why not?”‘

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife.

Queen Mama Donna is the Midlife Midwife™ offering counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™: http://www.donnahenes.net/queen/consult.shtml

***

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

.

Previous Posts

The Queen of Excuses
By Carol Nissenbaum My favorite episode of The Twilight Zone featured Burgess Meredith as a man who longed to read all the books in the world, but didn’t have the time. I was young and don’t remember the whole thing, but the upshot of the story was that the world came to an end and the man wa

posted 6:00:52am Apr. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Mining For Meaning
The shamanic assumption from which I operate is that every person has her own significant mission in this lifetime: her own path, her own dreams, her own symbols and sensibilities, her own visions and designs, her own way of learning, her own personalized hard-won lessons. That we each have our own

posted 6:00:56am Mar. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Life Begins at 42
Saint Hildegard’s Guide to Becoming a Midlife Powerfrau By Mary Sharratt We live in a youth-obsessed culture. The cosmetic industry pushes wrinkle creams and hair dye on us while celebrities resort to Botox and surgery to preserve an illusion of eternal girlhood. We live longer than ever befo

posted 6:00:00am Mar. 27, 2015 | read full post »

De Sancta Maria
Hail to you, O greenest, most fertile branch! You budded forth amidst breezes and winds in search of the knowledge of all that is holy. When the time was ripe your own branch brought forth blossoms. Hail greetings to you! The heat of the sun exudes sweat from you like the balsam’s perfume.

posted 6:00:55am Mar. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Nature, Our Mother
In the beginning, there was woman. And she was versatile. She breathed, she stretched, she strode, she sat, she foraged, she trapped, she planted, she cooked, she ate, she bled, she danced, she laughed, she slept, she dreamed, she played, she prayed. She made art, she made ceremonies, she made love,

posted 6:00:25am Mar. 23, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.