Karen Christy's life has taken a sudden and very exhilarating change of direction. While she'd almost come to anticipate transitions in her lifestyle, they had been, until last summer, of a necessary and not uncommon nature. First, the 20-year-old native of Abilene, Texas, moved north to Denton in 1969 to major in commercial art at North Texas State. Her plans for a degree were cut short after just one year, however, when she realized that part-time-job income could not adequately meet school and living expenses. So Karen moved to Dallas and adjusted smoothly to the working-girl role. For nearly a year, she was a secretary in Texas' second-largest city. Then, last year, she heard about a Playboy Bunny Hunt being conducted by Club representatives looking for girls to wear a pair of Bunny ears. Somewhat timorously, she decided to attend. "Some office friends convinced me to go." Not at all surprisingly, she far exceeded the requirements and, soon afterward, received an invitation in the mail to become a cottontail at the Chicago Club. At first, Karen demurred, then she decided that it might be very worth while to experience a complete change of place and people; she notified Club officials and flew to Chicago. "In the beginning, I thought I'd made a bad mistake." Her taste runs to the new and modern. "Old things depress me," she says frankly. And that preference extends to the city she now lives in. "Dallas is a relatively new city, filled with modern buildings and homes." In contrast, her first impressions of Chicago were of squat, undistinguished office buildings and the long, narrow belt of elegant postwar high-rises on Lake Shore Drive. She was disappointed. Quickly, however, Karen grew to like it largely due to the two essential aspects of her life: her work and her residence. She's been alternating her Bunny stints with increasingly frequent assignments from Playboy Models and she's living in the Bunny Dormitory in Hugh Hefner's mansion. "The Mansion is fantastic," she says. "There's always something going on. The parties give me a chance to meet well-known people, entertainers, politicians, athletes: a great mix." And during less revelous hours, Karen appreciates other advantages the Mansion offers. "Most nights, there's a movie showing. Also, I really like the company of the other girls." It's clear that Karen now feels thoroughly satisfied with her move. For Miss December, the Playboy Mansion is a fascinating mènage that she's more than delighted to call home.