Posts Tagged ‘Summer of Love’

The Girls of Summer: Elaine Morton, Miss June 1970

June 10, 2010

The lovely and talented Elaine Morton was Miss June 1970.


Photographed by William and Mel Figge. You have seen Bill’s billing on here before, but usually partnered with Ed DeLong. This time he worked with his wife, whose full name is Melba.

Ms. Morton got in a little late on the original Summer of Love action (barely missed it), but she was still feeling the reverbations of the first flower children and was all for being a free spirit.


People would profit from a bit more “live-and-let-live” logic, says blonde Elaine Morton, who wishes that “everybody would just butt out of everybody else’s business — as long as that business isn’t harming anyone.” Following her own recommendation, our June Playmate recently abandoned the comfortable confines of the family home in Burbank, California, and moved into her own bachelorette apartment across town.

(“Tuned-in Dropout.” Playboy, June 1970.)


Just a year ago, she was working part time as a salesgirl in a Glendale flower shop and full time as a home-economics major at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa. “I was all hung up in establishment modes of living,” she says. “Then I decided to stop striving for those goals and find my own.”

(Ibid.)


Totally the best shot. Holy geez, what brain-asplodin’ cuteness.

Since that decision, Miss June has dropped out of Southern California’s “straight” life and, with her boyfriend’s help, converted a milk truck into a mobile pad and made the west coast of Baja California her home away from home. Traveling on her savings, she simply drives onto any unoccupied stretch of Baja beach facing the Pacific Ocean and camps there until the scenery gets “predictable,” then drives on to a new location.

(Ibid.)

That sounds pretty all right to me. I was just telling the infinitely great Mr. Salisbury last week in the comments that I would quit the rat race but they don’t let you camp on the beach anymore. I also love the idea that she was in a converted milk truck. It’s cool because by the 70’s milk delivery was archaic in the wake of supermarkets, so it was kind of a renaissance for the vehicle itself. I like the idea of a thing outliving one sort of usefulness and being repurposed in a fun way.


TURN-ONS: Crazy-looking clothes, things that are different.
IN MY SPARE TIME: I study, shop, swim — anything at all but be bored.
AMBITIONS: To work as an airline stewardess, and have a happy and interesting life.

(Official Playmate data sheet.)

According to Marxz on the vintage erotica forums, who I consider an infallible authority on Playmates past, Ms. Morton did not become an air hostess but rather returned to college and pursued a baccalaureate, followed by a teaching credential. She became an educator right here in California, which we all know is the noblest, sexiest, most thoughtful career anyone can ever take up, and that only the most very attractive and magnetic people choose this great state for it. Well done, Ms. M! Such a head on this one’s sweet shoulders!

Dig that grooving cover. Such great hip art, all slick with a smoky black backdrop and purple neon, etc, yes? Love it. The PMOY for 1970 was my beloved, super-duper-darlingest-dearest-departed Claudia Jennings, so now I’m bummed just thinking about her and all that.

Final much more upbeat note. Elaine’s cousin Karen Elaine Morton (not pictured above, that is still Elaine herself) was Miss July 1978, and, like the lovely and talented baseball wife and present-day reality star Jeana Tomasino Keough (Miss November 1980), Karen played a Vestal Virgin in Mel Brooks’ History of the World, Part I. Pretty cool, yes?

Valentine Vixen — Nancy Harwood, Miss February 1968

February 24, 2010

In her Playmate interview, the lovely and talented Nancy Harwood, Miss February 1968, states views on the diametrically opposite end of the spectrum from yesterday’s first Valentine Vixen L.F. (Miss February 1970, all posts with references to whom have been removed from this site at the request of a different LF), but they ended up in virtually identical fields, showing once again that it is possible and even perhaps God’s intention in creating a species of such diverse intellects to achieve goals of peace and harmony no matter if there are little areas of difference between people. We can walk parallel paths and reach the same destination, and not imagine ours to be the only way home. Does this make sense?


Photographed by Bill Figge and Ed De Long.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the Indian mystic who has introduced the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and Mia Farrow Sinatra, among others, to the joys of contemplation, can also count Nancy Harwood among his followers. When Miss February faces the “altar” in her bachelorette pad in Burbank — it’s adorned with artificial flowers of psychedelic intensity from Mexico — she forgets not only the cares of a part-time college student but also the care-nots of a 19-year-old coming of age in Southern California. (“The Girl From Inner Space,” Playboy, February 1968.)


“It’s like getting high without drugs,” explains the pharmacist’s daughter — who got the message when she and many others, including pop idol Donovan, meditated with Maharishi recently at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium: “You could actually feel your neighbors going up, up and away!” (Ibid.)


Like so many of her tuned-in generation, Nancy grooves to the varied sounds of today’s many-splendored pop musical world — Hugh Masekela, Wes Montgomery, the Beatles, the Stones and Ravi Shankar. She also enjoys fraternizing with a variety of people at school, at the beach (“I used to go in for a lot of surfing, but paddling out got to be a drag”) or on Sunset Strip. (Ibid.)


I have a lot of friends with long hair, though I wouldn’t necessarily call them hippies.” However, Nancy informed us that abrasive contact with the “real” world is taking its toll on the flower children: “The Strip now has a lot in common with skid row — everybody’s just milling around and most of them are up tight. Last spring, people were turned on to one another; now, everybody’s on his own trip.” (Ibid.)


There is an appropriately forlorn but determined quality to this unusually clothed picture.

In my opinion, Nancy accurately pegs here the increasingly dissident years in the aftermath of the Summer of Love, which was 1967. You will hear the same complaint from other people — it was like that time was a golden hour that was never successfully recaptured, perhaps inevitably leading to the narcissistic solo drug benders of the seventies and subsequent desperately empty materialism and casual sex of the 1980’s. I honestly think we almost brought it back around in the 1990’s as far as caring about one another and giving a shit about the environment once more, but we lost it again somehow … I apologize to my daughter’s generation in advance for whatever comes next.

Another very unusual shot. They followed Nancy around to school and some peace rallies protesting the U.S. involvement in Vietnam. It’s not an experiment they tried much with the playmates, showing the reality of their lives, but it pays off with an idealistic gal like Nancy because that is part of her dimply but flinty-blue-eyed charm — the tinfoil beneath the icing of what you think is a cupcake but is actually a very determined young woman.


The more conventional side of Nancy’s education includes psychology and business courses at Los Angeles City College, a school she likes because of the diverse origins and upbringings of its students. Her ambitions are to model — Vogue’s Veruschka is her ideal — and to dance, preferably in films. (Ibid.)


According to her biography on her official site, Nancy put her classes to good use, and then some.

Nancy has been involved in human potential work for more than 15 years and is available for a personal coach. She is sought after as a coach because of her own experience and professoinal success. In her coaching, she integrates her extensive knowledge of body mechanics, diet, vitamins, and goal setting.

Due to her combination of brains, beauty, and free-love-based idealism and spirituality, Nancy was a tremendously popular Playmate during this time, especially with soldiers serving overseas during the Vietnam War.

Her feature was so popular that she received nine duffel bags of mail from American troops fighting in Vietnam in the following months. (official bio.)

Also,

She has remained a serious physical fitness buff, and has the same body weight and figure today that she had 25 years ago. (Ibid.)

The proof is in the pudding: check out the shots below!


DIG THE FABULOSITY!! l to r: Wonderful Helena Antonaccio (Miss June 1969), nothing-less-than-legendary star of the burlesque stage Tempest Storm, and beautiful flower child Nancy at Los Angeles Glamourcon in November of 2003.

Special thanks forever and always to the graceful, fun, funny, and all-around cramazing Helena Antonaccio for the above and below smashing shots of playmates and stage stars of yore in current action.


l to r: Nancy, Helena, and lovely and talented Connie Mason (Miss June 1963), Glamourcon 2003.

You must rush, rush, rush to Helena’s website and flock to her booth at any convention you attend. I can always count on the one-of-a-kind Miz A to Bring It when it comes to wonderful pictures. Bella, if you did not exist, I would have to invent you. *Muah!* ♥ (I get mooshy.)

Final present shot of Nancy:

Picture of Nancy at Glamroucon 15 by wonderful and hilarious J Greely, photographer of beautiful women and more recently zoo animals, who says, “I have nothing against naked women but I do object to clothed animals, so it evens out.” Check him out.

As a final awesome note, per her official site,

Ms. Harwood is currently President of the “original” Centerfold Alumni Association, which is composed of past Playmates and Centerfolds of the Month. These models are featured Playmates, whose dates of appearance range from August 1956 through June 1997.

Keep on rockin’ in the free world, Ms. Harwood!