Ah, afternoon coffee break...and I shamelessly confess to stealing a story from Rocco Palmo's blog and putting a female slant on it.
It is *very* hard to look sexy in a cassock - in clericals, it's dead easy (as a friend of mine discovered when a model told him as much) because it's very similar to wearing a suit; but in a cassock, or even worse, a habit, it's bloody near impossible. You need broad shoulders, narrow hips and a well-fitted cassock - there's a seminarian up the road who has all three and looks like a fashion plate. The Dominicans, bless them, are handicapped by colour (white, bleargh!) and cut of habit. They do, however, look fab between All Souls' and Easter, when they wear their black cappas over said habit.
Ok, fair enough...these are men vowed to celibacy and chastity, and they're not - and shouldn't be - trying to turn heads. However, when one does manage it, he's overcome such odds that I feel it is worthy of mention. Fr Gaenswein, private secretary to the Pope, is one such man. So much so, in fact, (as per Rocco) he has inspired Donatella Versace to include a clerically themed suit in the Milan menswear show for winter 2007-2008. Here's a picture of the man himself in cassock:
Trinny and Susannah would be proud: posture, attitude, a lack of self-consciousness all come together to make this one priest who will send every woman to Gammarelli's for her boyfriend's/husband's next outfit. Also present here are the self-awareness and confidence that make men so much sexier in their 40s and 50s than in their 20s. For example, Mark Harmon, voted People Magazine's "Sexiest man alive" at 35, blows his younger self *out of the water* at 56. It's a standing joke in my house that if I'm watching NCIS, you have to say my name about 3 times before I'll look away from Mark and look at you. Either that, or wait for an advert break.
However, Gorgeous Georg Gaenswein does not win THE top prize for looking good in robes. That, I'm afraid, goes to Judge John Deed...
...who manages to look dead sexy in red robes and a wig - at 62. I have to say, I wouldn't kick him out of my bed for eating crackers - and I wouldn't say that about Fr Gaenswein, cleric or no.
It has occurred to me that this post is the sort of thing that makes people refer to me as a "dark horse" - something my housemate Mark did just this weekend.
I responded, patting his knee as I walked by, "Is that because I'm so 'sensible' and 'mumsy'?"
He tactfully replied, "That might have something to do with it..."
Sounds like it's time to head into town to buy that cardigan...and those knee-high, black leather boots.
[Out of the gutter, darling, you're standing on my snorkel. You *know* who you are...]