Saturday, December 20, 2014
The above video features five members of the Warwick Rowers, who’ve become famous for their naked calendar. They do a small sing-a-long in this video, as well as talk about what their project is all about.
The naked calendar began as a way to raise money for their rowing club, a tactic used by many other groups. And, a calendar of naked fit lads isn’t a bad thing in itself. But theirs was something beyond all that.
It was clear early on that—not surprisingly—the gay community were strong supporters of the Rowers. They decided to offer something in return and started Sport Allies, which is dedicated to ending homophobia in sport. When the Rowers joined the fight, I had a feeling that we might have started seeing a cultural shift in sport, and since then we’ve seen many high-profile athletes come out, so the tide has definitely started to turn.
The Rowers exhibit a common trait among young men these days: They’re secure in themselves and their sexuality and their bodies, and don't mind using their sex appeal. They have gay friends and can’t understand why anyone would be against gay people. They also clearly don’t care if anyone thinks they might be gay because of all that.
But many young men these days also recognise the fluidity of human sexuality, how it’s not the linear either/or of gay/straight as was once believed, and they reject such labels (something I wrote about back in October). It’s a very different world than the one I came of age in.
At any rate, the lads seem like very nice guys. I’ve seen some of their interviews and “making of” videos, and follow some of them on Twitter. They always remain positive and friendly, traits I admire, probably because it’s harder for me to do that.
And, it’s all for a good cause. Not that one needs a reason to appreciate photos of fit naked young men, but it's nice that it's the case.