This fall's playboy magazine fashion guide features Raquel Welch on the cover and article by Joyce Brothers on what men and women want "in everything from fashion to sex," and a photo of Winthrop House tutor Rodney Pearson running along the Charles River.
Pearson says he is not a normal Playboy model and adds that he is not even known as a "fancy dresser." "I was shocked that I could be in a fashion magazine," he said.
But he explains that the magazine was looking for "a runner who works with computers" for its feature on "The men of Boston," a role which Pearson fits well.
A serious marathoner and a Ph.D. candidate in economics, Pearson this year expects to complete his thesis on the computers and the railroad industry.
This is not the photogenic 29-year-old's first time modeling his running attire. He has appeared in a Puma running shoe advertisement and has been featured on a sweatshirt promoting a popular local running center.
A successful modeling career, however is not one of Pearson's top priorities. He is currently training daily in hopes of qualifying for the 1984 Olympic trials as a marathoner. He estimates that he has run more than 20 marathons in the past five years and he turned in a very respectable time of two hours, 21 minutes and 40 seconds in the 1981 Boston marathon.
Pearson's academic credentials are equally impressive. He already has his MBA, and he lectures in Economics 1500. Financial Accounting."
Paul Engelman, publicity manager for Playboy fashion, says the magazine was looking for a "fashionable cross section of men to represent Boston, taking into account the diverse aspects of the city the professional the worker the athlete and of course the academic."
In its search the magazine called the Bill Rodgers Running Center a haven for local running aficionados and the center referred them to Pearson.
Pearson won the job after auditioning along with 300 other handsome runners.
The magazine photo depicts Pearson running along the Charles in a stylish rust and tan running suit as the Boston Skyline is reflected in the water.
"It doesn't matter what you wear as long as you wear it with confidence," he advises.
Pearson says his Playboy billing hasn't led to sex symbol status on campus. "Nobody's really said much I don't know anybody who reads the magazine," he adds.
He says his relatives still haven't learned of his new found stardom even though the magazine has been on the newsstands since last week. "I never did tell my family. I just wanted to see if they saw it, but they haven't mentioned it.