January 10, 2002

I just wanted to say I feel like weeping at the sad state of things in this country. I am a Canadian who spent most of my formative adult years living in Germany and have recently returned. I am shocked and saddened at how we view the female body in this country. To see women in change rooms here wriggling in and out of clothes, trying desperately not to show any flesh, strikes me on the one hand as ridiculous, on the other hand as tragic.

In Germany, many change rooms are co-ed, with little cubby holes with doors for those who want them. Beaches are of course topless (the beach I was on this summer had mostly the 50+ topless), and saunas (a very popular winter leisure activity for the whole family) are nude. Children grow up seeing lots of naked, normal bodies right from birth that have not been air brushed, liposuctioned, and then sexualized.

If women's bodies in this country are EVER going to stop being sexualized, then we need to see pictures like those in this calendar everywhere, pictures of normal women's bodies in positive, nonsexual poses. We need to teach our children that bodies are beautiful and natural.

The thought of how anyone could find this calendar offensive is simply beyond me. Hats off to those who made it.

PS - As a mom whose 2 1/2 year old son recently weaned himself, I especially cherish the picture of the nursing child.