One man formed a secret boudoir bond with MAE WEST, a trophy encounter he treasured but did not publicize for several decades. Here are the juicy details about a Chesty Bond original.
• • The origins of "Chesty Bond" • •
• • Chesty Bond is a long-lived fictional cartoon character and trademark for the Australian clothing company Bonds. Originally created in 1938 as part of a merchandising campaign to sell men's underwear (and the singlet — — a type of vest — — in particular), Chesty Bond is recognized by many Australians as a popular national icon.
• • In 1938, the teenager who posed for the original drawing was Max Whitehead [2 August 1922 — March 2010]. As a pro wrestler, fighting under the name “Max Steyne,” Whitehead traveled the world, and reportedly only lost to the famous Killer Kowalski.
• • By 1940, a Chesty Bond cartoon — — drawn by cartoonist Syd Miller — — was being featured three times each week in Sydney's Sun newspaper, eventually running for 20 years. Chesty, with his characteristically powerful jutting jaw and impressive physique, became a superhero when he pulled on his trusty Chesty Bond Athletic vest. As a result of the successful campaign, Chesty Bond became the archetypal Australian hero synonymous with Australian masculinity and an icon recognized Australia wide.
• • According to The Australian: As mourners gather today to remember Max Whitehead, who died last week at the age of 87, there will be much reflection on his rich life and his incredibly varied CV.
• • The Australian writes: "Not only was Max Whitehead the original Chesty Bond model, he was also the first captain of the Manly Sea Eagles and even had a long stint traveling the world as a professional wrestler. But journalist Steve Warnock, who interviewed Max Whitehead in the late 1980s, says there was another achievement Whitehead quietly claimed to have notched up: bedding — — or indeed, being bedded by — — Mae West. "He told me he'd kill me if I let on about it while he was still alive," Warnock told Strewth yesterday. Max Whitehead was in his early thirties at the time and his wrestling partner happened to be Mae West's lover; West was by then in her 60s, aging extremely well and entertaining a predilection for musclemen. When the wrestling partner had to go away for a week, he asked Whitehead to look after West. "Max wasn't bullshitting me," Warnock says. "He told me he turned up at the mansion with a toothbrush and a towel, was welcomed by a butler ('Mr Whitehead, I presume?') and shown to the bedroom, which he left a week later a bit the worse for wear." It would go some way toward explaining why Chesty Bond looked so pleased.
— — Source: — —
• • Article: "A Chesty Bond"
• • Byline: James Jeffrey
• • Published in: The Australian — — www.theaustralian.com.au/
• • Published on: 31 March 2010
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • none • •
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