The South Florida Firefighters Calendar is the end of a long road, fraught with protein smoothies, Cybex machines, and secretaries whose judgment can make or break a man. Few jawlines are sharp enough; even fewer meet rigorous standards of stomach topography. And then the existential "prize" -- having fake soot rubbed on your man-boobs in the name of charitable lust. Is it worth it?
Of course! For a good cause any fireman would rescue a kitten -- or pose half-naked covered in sweat spray. Your reputation in the community as a good citizen (or simply as "July" or "February") is what the job's all about. This weekend marks the release of the 2006 calendar, when these fine specimens of manliness become available for twelve months of viewing pleasure. Calendars cost $15 and proceeds go to Neighbors 4 Neighbors and Here's Help, a drug treatment and rehabilitation program. Last year's calendar alone raised $28,000 for those and other local charities. The 2006 calendar also features an all-star lineup, reviving popular models from the past.
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Warren Burgs, a 31-year veteran of Miami-Dade County Fire Rescue Department, appears in the calendar for the first time with his son Tim, now with the department for two years. The duo was chosen this past April at the annual Secretary's Day Luncheon. "I can't compete with the younger guys," says the older Burgs. "I sort of rode in on Tim's coattails." Modesty is charming, Mr. Burgs, but it appears your pants are on fire.