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Saturday, July 29, 2017

(3) I TRY NOT TO EMBARRASS MY FAMILY.


Circa 1992
     I've joined Anne Bell's duplicate bridge group at the Hingham Community Center. She offers free mini lessons for those who arrive half an hour early. She is such an excellent teacher, my interest is aroused all over again after years of no bridge at all. I commented to a woman named Winston, who must have been close to eighty, "You're pretty sharp at this game."
     She said, "I should be, I play bridge every day of the week."
     I hope my brain cells are functioning half as well as hers when I'm her age, which will be too damn soon. When I turned 70 last August, not a thing changed, at least not on the inside. I still feel as frisky as I did in my 50s, still think sex is a funny-ha-ha way to make babies, still appreciate colorful off-color jokes, and try not to embarrass my family, which I probably just did. 
Fast forward to 2011 . . .
     Get a load of these grannies! The Ladies of Linden Ponds - ages 63 to 97 - took it off and posed for a 2011 calendar to raise some money for charity and prove women of any age can be sexy.
     “I never told my kids about this, and when they get their Christmas present they’re gonna be going, ‘Oh, Ma, I can’t believe you did this!’ ” laughed Laura Morris, aka Miss January, who poses with a giant glass of champagne, a “Happy New Year” sign and a big fan of feathers covering her naughty bits.
     Barbara Perry, Miss December, said she couldn’t believe it when they asked her to pose topless inside a big Christmas box -- outside in the snow!
     “I said, ‘Oh, no.’ But it was fun, we were laughing, we were hysterical,” she said.
     Carol Oliver, a resident of Linden Ponds, a 62-plus retirement community in Hingham, came up with the idea. She said she was inspired by the group of women in England who created a similar calendar and have raised more than 2 million pounds for leukemia research in that country. (They were also the subject of the 2003 comedy “Calendar Girls.”)
     Sale of The Ladies of Linden Ponds calendar will benefit the community’s Benevolent Care Fund, which provides assistance to residents facing financial hardship, and its Student Scholarship Fund.
     “I saw the calendar that the women in England did and I was fascinated by it,” said Oliver. “It showed that an older person can look quite beautiful, and it’s a way to make money for a fund we believed in.”
     Some of the other photos include Miss February, Lillian Awde, who poses with a bouquet of roses in front of her bare chest; Kay Nelligan, who posed in the Linden Ponds library with a book covering her bosom and Dottie Joyce, Miss March, who posed in a leprechaun hat and bow tie with a pot o’ gold hiding her (treasure) chest. The oldest model is 97-year-old Winston Hall, who has a pool table behind her, a card table in front of her and a bunch of oversized playing cards covering her up.  She said she didn’t have any problem with agreeing to the pose.

WINSTON HALL, DUPLICATE BRIDGE PLAYER, HINGHAM MASSACHUSETTS

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