The time is ticking swiftly towards October, or Frocktober, as it is skittishly known. Tomorrow, and for the duration of this – so very, very long – month, I am committed to wearing a dress, or some such skirty thing, and to daily document this horror via social media, to raise funds for the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation.
However, as I remarked last year, this seems a small price to pay for the possible benefits this pathetic struggle with my sartorial demons could bring to further the research into this awful disease. And I raised quite a decent wack last year, to your, um, credit. More than double my target, in fact. So thank you, again.
Most of you will already know I have a personal investment in this particular cause – I am, I admit, nothing if not selfish. My mother, Rosalind Feldman (that’s her above, in 1951, aged 17, wearing one of her sister’s dresses), was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in December 2010, but only after many months of having to endure symptoms that no one had picked up – mostly because ovarian cancer is so bloody hard to diagnose, that by the time it is, the cancer is already doing its evil voodoo that it does so well.
Since that terrifying and dismal day, the good, good folk at St Vincent’s Hospital in Darlinghurst, along with those at the Kinghorn Cancer Centre and Sacred Heart Hospice, have – with not a little help from Rosalind’s sheer bloody-mindedness and no help at all from my peripheral dithering – kept her ticking over for far longer than her straight-shooting oncologist, the magnificent Professor Eva Segelov, would have been prepared to wager. (Fittingly, Eva is something of a fashionista – particularly in the shoe department – and Ros and I always look forward to seeing what foxy little Italian numbers she’ll be wearing at our next appointment.)
So – how best to make you all part with your hard-earned? While I know some among you took pleasure in witnessing my daily posts on Instagram and Facebook last year, I thought I might mix it up a bit in 2014, just to keep things mildly more amusing for you, and altogether more humiliating (and hopefully lucrative) for me and my donation kitty. And, frankly, I haven’t bought that many new clothes to make my Frocktober posts interesting enough for you to cough up more money to see.
So, I will leave the daily glam shots to those who do them best – you can check out everyone’s daily updates at #frocktober and #ocrf on Instagram – and instead, occasionally throw in some unchronological photographic vignettes through the history of my wardrobe, according to my daily whim.
To start, I take you back to where it all began for me here in Sydney.
November 1982 and 26 years old. I was hot off the plane from London with my best friend Jed, via a week in Bali, for a year’s working holiday. I have no idea where any of the clothes I’m wearing came from, but when we got off the plane in Sydney, Jed and I were the only people in monochrome, that’s for sure.
If you’d like to donate, please hit this link and go for your life. And thanks, in anticipation, from the bottom of my sock drawer.