I am not a Nudist.
I am not particularly shy with my body, either. I wouldn’t mind walking around in public, in the nude, if it were legal. As a man, the least I have to wear is a pair of underpants. I do understand that most people are uncomfortable even with that, walking around in underpants themselves, and laying eyes on a barely dressed man in public. Well, anywhere in public but the bath. I mean, what else than underpants are speedos?
Of course, shame for our bodies is culturally instilled. But shame is not the only reason for peope to hide their bodies. Fear is another reason. One of the most direct and understandable fears is from women towards men, for being raped. I really hate those men, who are responsible for that mistrust and fear that keeps women from taking their clothes off in public. I really like looking at naked women. Naturally, there are some impractical aspects about public nudity: where keep your money, your keys, credit card? Put your arse where thousands of other people have had theirs that day? What about the weather? It’s not really an issue, as long as it’s 80°F, but we only have a month, tops, with that kind of weather in Germany. Was I talking about fear before? Even if there was no shame involved in public nudity, people are very much afraid of being ridiculed. You might ask: Isn’t fear of being ridiculed the same as shame? Maybe the shot isn’t long, but I feel there is a significant difference there. Humiliation and shame are often associated, and humiliation is the goal of ridicule, but the frear of being ridiculed, and therefore humiliated, is not shame per se, but insecurity. Shame comes after humiliation.
Yes, that’s me blathering. I used to be insecure and shy, ashamed, especially when I didn’t know my own body very well, or other peoples’ bodies. But, I also learned that exposing yourself can be very liberating, too, and the skin is only the surface. Literally, and metaphorically.
No, I don’t run around naked in public. I am still fairly sane. At least in that respect. But I’ve been known to run around my village naked at night after losing at strip-poker on my birthday. And it was snowing. OK, maybe I am a little insane.
Thanks to Marie for inspiring this post on public nudity.