miss september goes a little native
"The first time that I went there, I was so anxious," says Kristi Cline, riding through Beverly Hills on the way to her new home-away-from-home, the Playboy Mansion. "But it was amazing -- they really know how to treat you like you're family." And for our 19-year-old Miss September, family is important: This self-described country girl still gets homesick thinking of Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she spent much of her childhood and where her father and sisters live, and of Snyder, a small town in west Texas where her mother lives. In fact, she's about to introduce her family back home to her Playboy family: Tomorrow Kristi heads to Albuquerque to shoot photos for her pictorial. "I love the Mansion," she says, "but I am so ready to go home it's not funny."
Q: Was this small-town girl comfortable posing for Playboy?
A: Actually, I've always been kind of a nudist. My mom told me that when I was little it was hard to keep clothes on me. I'm comfortable with my body, and with nudity. Modeling was weird, but being nude wasn't.
Q: Are you used to being looked at?
A: Well, I was one of those girls who, when someone told me I was pretty, would just say thank you and walk on. I never really thought of myself that way, and I don't think I ever will. I hope I never get so involved with myself.
Q: What's your idea of romance?
A: The time my fiancé took me to the mountains. We were out there in the woods, and he put on my favorite band, Alabama, and we danced in the moonlight. That was the most romantic thing in my whole life, and I thought, This is the guy for me.
Q: Have you always been popular with boys?
A: I only had two boyfriends through high school. I was always more into studying than worrying about boys. I spent three years, in junior high and high school, in Snyder, Texas, which is this little bitty town. I was a straight-A student, into everything. In a town that small, school is the main thing. Everybody knows everybody, and if you mess up, the teachers know your parents. When I moved back to Albuquerque, I kind of went wild. My older sister taught me the ways of partying and ditching school. But I always kept my grades high. And I started college -- majoring in premed. I'll go back and become a pediatrician. I love kids. For now, though, I've decided to give Playboy all I have for the next two years.
Q: During your time in Los Angeles, have you hit the town with Hef?
A: I've been out a couple of times with Hef and some of the other girls. We walk into a place and everybody stares. I've never had that happen before. And guys are embarrassed to ask us to dance, or they're intimidated. But we're all pretty normal people. We just show ourselves off a little more.
Photography by Stephen Wayda