Molly Shattuck, mother of three, defied conventional wisdom, long odds and the laws of gravity when she became a Ravens cheerleader at the ripe old age of 38.
Now she has topped that feat to become a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model - in a sense.
The Grandma Moses of pompom girls - first featured in The Sun, my bosses want you to know - is pictured in a bikini on SI.com, alongside a recent Rick Reilly column, "Good Golly, Ms. Molly." (The paper version of the magazine does not include the shot, but provides a link: SI.com/siexclusive/reilly.)
The photo is kind of a shocker even after you absorb the notion that those taut abs were thrice heavy with child. That's because the proof is right there, tugging at mama's apron strings. Make that bikini strings.
The wife of Constellation Energy chief Mayo Shattuck strikes a pose with chest out, hips cocked to one side - and three towheads gathered 'round her high-heeled feet.
Maybe the kids thought that come-hither look was for them.
The Ravens had the photo shot for its 2005 cheerleader calendar. Including the children was the cheerleading coach's idea, said Shattuck, who was all for it.
"This is who I am," she said. "I'm a mom, foremost, and I happen to have a love for cheering for the Baltimore Ravens."
But the shot didn't make the cut for the calendar. The Ravens instead chose one that pictured Shattuck draped in a pink evening gown - sans kids.
"As a general decision by everyone involved - and clearly the front office folks were heavily involved - given the nature of what the product was, an NFL cheerleading calendar, as great as the photo was and as tasteful as it was, it probably wasn't" the best choice for the calendar, photographer Napoleon Martinez said.
"It was just kind of hedging against any potential backlash from people saying, 'Hey this is an NFL calendar,'" he said. "'What are kids doing there?'"
Oh, c'mon! Who'd object to an old-fashioned family photo?
You ram it, you buy it
Sometimes even the driest tomes in municipal governance tell a story. About real life. Real people. And really bad drivers.
Like the item on page 31 of today's Board of Estimates agenda, which calls for drawing $2,750 out of account No. 1001-201-002-00-370 and giving it to Yeshivat Rambam, a school in Park Heights:
"On January 4, 2005, a police officer was operating a marked police vehicle when it struck a basketball pole and damaged the pole beyond repair. The sunlight that day obstructed the officer's vision. The basketball pole is the personal property of Yeshivat Rambam [school]. Approved for funds by finance."
Be sure to try the guacamole face dip
John Shields is an unassuming guy as celebrity chefs go. Unlikely to strut on a countertop a la Bobby Flay or strike an imperious Iron Chef pose, he comes across as boyish and earnest, more Opie than Emeril.
But Coastal Cooking With John Shields, his new Maryland Public Television series, has an offbeat side. An episode set to air this month features Joyce Scott, the Baltimore sculptor whose wildly titled works include Howdy Doody, On Crack, Imagines His Baby Photo.
After sharing her family's fried oyster recipe, Scott submits to a beauty treatment involving avocado and cooking oil.
"We have an outtake portion, and most of it's probably Joyce," said Shields, owner of Gertrude's restaurant at the Baltimore Museum of Art. "We had to bleep out a lot of it."
An actress in the concrete
Look for actress and civil rights activist Ruby Dee tomorrow at the Senator Theatre, where she'll have a sidewalk block with her signature unveiled.
(No, she's not planting her hands in wet concrete, or even scratching her name into it. That's all done by machine these days, so celebrities don't have to ruin their manicures.)
There will be an 8 p.m. screening of A Raisin in the Sun, the 1961 film that starred Dee and Sidney Poitier. There's a dinner and reception beforehand, all to raise money for Govans Ecumenical Development Corp.'s affordable-housing programs.
No cheerleaders, but bigger blocks
City Paper calls it the "Best Use of Taxpayer Money" in its annual Best of Baltimore issue.
Police and firefighters? Teachers? The Rumor Control hot line?
No, the DPW calendar.
It tells you when to put the trash and recyclables at the curb, and comes with nice pictures of city workers.
DPW spokesman Kurt Kocher says next year's calendar, which goes to press in a few weeks, will be even better. There will be bigger blocks (so there's room to jot down doctor's appointments and PTA meetings). And the photos of DPW workers will be in color instead of sepia tone.
The cost: about $150,000.
"What they're saying really is, dollar for dollar, it pays off," Kocher said. "There's a lot of environmentalists over there at the City Paper."