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Sunday, September 9, 2007

On Bettie Page

The World’s First Supermodel
Naughty. Nice. Daring. Shy. Exotic. Simple. Bettie page could inhabit the full spectrum making her a goddess among women. Now the raven hair beauty is doing it again by ring leading a resurgence of pin-up popularity.

If Only She Was The Girl Next Door
Much like Dean and Monroe, Bettie Page’s popularity during her day was short lived, but her impact has lasted decades. Bettie Page is her real name, she was born Bettie Mae Page on april 22, 1923 in Nashville, Tennessee. Stricken by hard times while growing up her family traveled all over the country in search of a better life.

Most Likely To Succeed
When she was ten, her parents had divorced and her mother was forced to place Bettie and her two sisters in an orphanage while she worked two jobs to save money. She worked hard during high school with activities in the student council and dramatics club, gaining the admiration of her classmates and voted, “most likely to succeed”. She eventually returned to Nashville to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University.

The Bangs Have It
"Jerry Tibbs was the one who got me wearing bangs. For years I had my hair parted down the middle in a ponytail, tucked down around the sides. But he said to me, 'Bettie, you've got a very high forehead. I think you'd look good if you cut some bangs to cover it.' well, I went and cut the bangs, and I've been wearing them ever since. They say it's my trademark."

News Flash, Brunettes Have More Fun
"I don't know what they mean by an icon. I never thought of myself as being that. It seems strange to me. I was just modeling, thinking of as many different poses as possible. I made more money modeling than being a secretary. I had a lot of free time. You could go back to work after an absence of a few months. I couldn't do that as a secretary.

Miss Pin-Up Girl Of The World
1955 was a banner year for pin-up models, when Bettie Page was titled, “Miss Pin-Up of the World”. In January of that same year, she was the centerfold in Playboy Magazine. Hugh Hefner is a huge fan of hers and is still a close friend.

Blue Crush
"I was never one who was squeamish about nudity. I don't believe in being promiscuous about it, but several times I thought of going to a nudist colony."

"I love to swim in the nude and roam around the house in the nude. You're just as free as a bird!"

"I like being outdoors. I like to go cavorting in the nude in the forests. It is just another world. To take sunbaths in the nude."

"It makes me feel wonderful that people still care for me... That I have so many fans among young people, who write to me and tell me I have been an inspiration."

The Klaw Has You
"The only person I did bondage for was Irving Klaw and his sister Paula. Usually they would shoot four or five models every Saturday. He wouldn't pay for the regular pictures unless we did some bondage. So I did bondage shots to get paid for the other photos."

The Later Years
Her popularity eventually faded and she disappeared from public view in the late 60’s. Many rumors circulated about her demise, but in actuality she tried her hand at domestic married life, which failed miserably.

Divine Bettie
Her attempts at a normal domestic existence were further hampered when she started suffering from severe mental trouble, which led to her stabbing three people. After that, bettie took what might seem like a dramatic turn and entered a religious seminary to briefly work as a christian missionary.

Professional Woman
The Bettie Page t-shirts on American Pop Culture Encyclopedia are officially licensed directly from Bettie Page herself, however these days she doesn’t make public appearances and her exact location in southern California is a closely guarded secret.

The Girl With The Perfect Figure
Her measurements during her glamour modeling days: 36-24-36 1/2. 5’ 5 1/2” tall.

The Betty Pages
She is sometimes credited as Betty Page, rather than Bettie Page. During the 80’s she once again shot to popularity with a comic series named for her called, “The Betty Pages”. The comic brought her a new audience and ever since has been regarded as an icon.

Another comic book played a major roll in rocketing her to stardom during her early years. Dave Steven’s comic book, “The Rocketeer” featured a raven haired beauty greatly inspired by Page. Long after, the comic was adapted into a feature film with Jennifer Connelly in the role initially based on Bettie Page.

Blue Iguana
While rehearsing for a role as a stripper, Daryl Hannah would don a Bettie Page disguise and strip in los angeles strip clubs during off-peak hours.

Burlesque Queen
"I was not trying to be shocking, or to be a pioneer. I wasn't trying to change society, or to be ahead of my time. I didn't think of myself as liberated, and I don't believe that I did anything important. I was just myself. I didn't know any other way to be, or any other way to live."

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