Smooth Operator

This is quite the hairless couple, trim and athletic and healthy. I have never before witnessed such a sheen on a man’s oiled limbs; usually, they are too furry to reflect light. This delightful artwork reminds me both of Vargas pin-up girls, as well as actress Jean Harlow, who shared the platinum hair and pale skin (although rarely a smile). Swimsuits had made leaps and bounds by 1938, with vastly less fabric and stretchier than those of the generation before. Today’s styles hardly differ from these wisp-o-weight Jantzens so many moons ago.

Squeeeeeezing The Last Drop Out Of Summer

I Remember Distinctly

While it will remain 103 degrees in central Texas well nigh into October, the rest of y’all will soon be enjoying autumn weather. If your neighborhood pool remains open (as our does here, though never would we ever stick a pinky toe into it), I suggest you soak up the last bit of sun, carpe diem, and do not go gently into that good fall by taking advantage of the sun’s warm rays with a friendly game of Mah Jongg. Why sit in the shade of a cozy house at a card table with cocktails and salted cashews when you could stand in a public pee pavilion, trying desperately not to let the Chinese tiles fall into the water, yelling at nearby kids to leave you be, constantly looking over your shoulder to make sure you’re not in the path of an errant cannonball? These ladies at Wardman Park Pool, Washington seem absolutely ensconced.

How To Be Extra This Swimsuit Season

With spring upon us in just three weeks, I can’t help but start preparing my poolside wardrobe. Sure, you may have a fab, supportive one-piece and stilettos, but do you have a complimentary bonnet–the kind that reminds you of the underside of a mushroom cap? Jeanne Crain sure did in 1944. Sun protection for her fabulous face!

Kobal Collection

Speaking of sun protection, actress Betty Hutton protects her mug with a salmon-colored parasol that coordinates perfectly with her swimsuit.

Is it over-the-top, dramatic, and extra? Yes. I mean, there’s a tiger. Folks complain about shark attacks at the beach, but it’s tigers that mostly do the mauling. And is it me, or does Betty look a little…I won’t say trans per se, but maybe just a bit masculine? It’s probably just the lighting of her shoulder, right?

No need to be extra if you’re Norma Jean herself. It doesn’t take high drama for her to get noticed. But well before she bleached her hair into the famous Monroe coif, she donned a bikini nearly as pale as her skin. Talk about alabaster. Okay, so maybe she’s not being extra at all (just sitting on a diving board at the community pool), but she was EXTRA white!

Kobal Collection

Perhaps you weren’t born pale ale like Whitey McWhitey. Perhaps you were gifted with tan skin like Yvonne DeCarlo. What can you do to set yourself apart from the mainstream? Find yourself a set of pier posts dangerously high above the surf, climb atop them and perch yourself, as though you can’t feel the sharp wood etching itself into your bum. Folks might think you’re mad, but what a shot for Instagram. Just don’t plummet to your death.

Va Va Voom

Still need something more eye-catching in your swimwear? How about ruched gold lame? It slims protrusive abdomens and instantly makes any woman look 20 years older. Case in point: here we have Carolyn Jones (aka Morticia Addams) posed aboard a ship railing, looking much older than her 31 years. It brings to mind an image of one’s randy aunt, having escaped her Carnival cruise cabin, full of gin, and ready to mingle.

Not extra enough? Look no further than drama queen Kim K herself, the queen of incessant yet unnecessary self-promotion, trying too hard to seem casual, while her swimsuit struggles to contain her underboob. Notice me! Validate me! Pay attention!

Noah’s Ark Giraffes Find Fame On Swimsuit

Florida Poster Girls 1948
Florida Poster Girls 1948

Is that not the cutest swimsuit you ever saw? Yes, the one under “real food.” Unfortunate placement indeed.


And for the fellas, here’s some shades of Betty Grable.

Florida Girls
Florida Girls

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