Thursday, July 31, 2008

Here's How to Shut Down a Strip Club

A Georgia town takes $1 million slated to pay off a bond on a water treatment plant and buys a strip club instead, just to shut it down.

I'll bet the seller could open up a really nice new strip club with that kind of coin. Maybe two or three.

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Nudism Struggles While Swinging Goes Mainstream

There's a CBS series called Swingtown, and in Florida hundreds of couples will be attending SwingFest at the Westin Diplomat Hotel in Hollywood.
Through Sunday, the hotel will host swingers from almost every state and 20 countries for lingerie parties, pool fests and “play rooms” that the SwingFest Web site promises will be “wild.”

“With so much space available to us during the resort takeover, you’re sure to find the room you desire,” according to the event Web site. “Or just lounge by the pool and soak in the sexually charged atmosphere.”
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Here We Go Again

Yet another art versus porn kerfuffle in Australia. An art gallery is featuring two apparently nude women in a bathtub in their street window display.
No complaints have been received by police or local council, but the stunt has raised eyebrows in the conservative city of Brisbane, where the gallery is located, prompting criticism from the the Australian Family Association.

President Mark Holzworth described it as "childish, immature, teenage schoolboy voyeur stuff" that added no credibility to the gallery or the artists featured.

"This will not attract art-lovers, it will attract voyeurs which is not good for Brisbane or women in general," Mr Holzworth said. "I thought we had grown up as a society. Not even brothels would be this brazen to promote their services."
No complaints have been received, but suddenly someone is calling these models hookers. If "growing up" means complete intolerance of any type of nudity, then let me stay a child.

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Why Do Women Get Breast Enlargement Surgery?

Bethan Cole in The Daily Mail wants to know.
'Breast surgery has become just another part of the beauty regime - like applying make-up - and it's unnecessary and unpleasant,' says the writer Joan Smith. 'It's treated the same as getting a haircut. It's become normalised. I think any woman considering breast surgery for cosmetic reasons should spend a month in Darfur and then decide if body image is a really important issue.'

Former Cosmopolitan editor Marcelle D'argy Smith agrees.

'Fake breasts have become inescapable, but I think the main reason why women do it is to please men. They're trying to fulfil a male fantasy.

'It might make women feel more confident - but it is, ultimately, for men.'
But do men really like the bowling balls on an ironing board look for women? Tony Parsons in GQ writes about the "Fear of Fake Breasts".
'They are not there to be fondled, kissed or felt; they are there to be admired, discussed, lusted after and photographed. The moment they are touched - and I mean in the heat of passion, rather than out of curiosity or in the interests of scientific research - then the spell is broken.

'And this is true of all fake breasts, no matter how much money has been spent on this act of female selfmutilation.'
Of course, in matters of mastectomies, deformities, reductions and other medical reasons, breast augmentation or reconstruction is a life-saver for many women. But if you are looking at a new pair to please that special guy, take note that if he does not take notice of your Manolo shoes or Gucci handbag, he really isn't going to care if you turn your fun bags into designer accessories.

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More on the San Onofre Beach Situation

The OC Weekly has an up-to-date story.

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Is This a Perversion?

While society frowns upon public displays of graphic sex, just about everyone has engaged in some sort of sex in an exotic location.
“It is a problem which appears to be getting worse,” a police spokesman told the Telegraph. “People appear to get a perverse pleasure out of this behaviour.”
Perverse? Hardly. It's just people expressing their normal sexual urges.

I confess to losing my virginity in the front seat of a car parked in a secluded but public area. I also had sex in a car at a drive-in movie, in the middle of an open field, and on the balcony of an apartment building. I nearly had sex in a brightly-lit apartment building hallway once, but my partner and I chickened out when we thought we heard someone on the stairway.

I never considered this a perversion. At no time were we trying to be seen, but the slight chance of being caught was a definite turn-on.

In Woody Allen's movie "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex", Louise Lasser's character cannot achieve orgasm unless she has sex in a public place. The scene is funny because her predicament is founded in real life.
In Sex and Tourism: Journeys of Romance, Love and Lust, tourism professors Thomas G. Bauer and Bob McKercher describe the relationship between travel and intimacy.

Although the words “sex tourism” have become synonymous with prostitution, the authors argue that “the vast majority of people who engage in sex when they travel do so with their regular partners. …

“Sometimes sex or the prospect of sexual encounters at the destination or along the way plays a central role in the decision to travel,” the book states.
It's not by accident that someone named a concoction with peach schnapps and vodka "Sex on the Beach".

The problem is that having sex in a public place can get you arrested.
Michelle Palmer, the 36-year-old British woman arrested in Dubai after being caught having sex with a man on Jumeirah Beach, has reportedly been charged with having sex outside marriage, indecent behaviour in public and being drunk in public, and faces up to six years in jail.

In the case of the Vimy war memorial, Alain Robillard and Jackie Boldoduc were charged after posting an Internet video of their erotic encounter at the historic landmark.
When we were teenagers in the early 70s, there was always the possibility that a police car could have pulled up behind us while we were in the throes of ecstasy, but we were never fearful of arrest. Chances are the cop would have shined his flashlight into the car, and asked us to take it somewhere else.

The law has great difficulty in differentiating between normal sexual activity, and perversion. People are going to have sex, they are going to take pictures and video, and they are going to do it just about anywhere. In a seemingly growing conservative environment, the trend is to further criminalize people for normal sexual activity.

It should be noted that excessive public displays of sexuality are prohibited at nudist resorts, primarily because of the family atmosphere, but nudists generally enjoy a healthier sex life due to the fact that they are less self-conscious about their bodies. Nudists are not anti-sex. [205 Arguments and Observations in Support of Naturism .pdf file]

Nobody is advocating public sex on Main Street USA, but if two people are loving each other, and are making some effort at being discreet, then the law should do nothing more than to ask them to cover up and move along.

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When I was a teenager, I read somewhere that walking barefoot in the early morning dewy grass was a great stress-reliever. I started going outdoors barefoot all the time, and continue to do so today, and I never wear shoes (or much else) indoors. It's not surprising that many people consider going barefoot tantamount to a religion.
Chvatal makes mention of the ”underground barefoot running community,“ but it's a community with increasing visibility. Not long ago, runners without shoes were a novelty (remember 1984's 5,000-meter phenom Zola Budd from South Africa?). Today, barefoot runners are present in most marathons and are popping up in longer endurance runs.

Perhaps even more ambitious are hard-core barefoot hikers, who take on all sorts of rugged terrain minus sturdy, protective boots. Various Web sites are devoted to the subject, and there's even a book — The Barefoot Hiker by Richard Frazine, cited as gospel by barefoot aficionados.
It also turns out that going barefoot is probably very good for your health.
Reflexology, according to Kevin Kunz, co-author of Complete Reflexology for Life, ”is the technique of applying pressure to specific reflex points on the hands and feet to stimulate the body's own healing powers.“

Reflexology suggests that certain parts of your feet and hands are directly connected to specific parts of your body. For instance, the lower third of your toes are hot-wired to your brain, your arch and heels to your lower back, the bottom center of your big toe to your pituitary gland. Manipulate the appropriate part of your foot, and you can address a range of woes.
There are several studies out warning about the dangers of wearing shoes. One of the most recent ones shows that wearing flip-flops "can lead to serious sole, heel and ankle problems".

There appears to be no downside to going barefoot (when practical). If going barefoot is so good for you, imagine how happy you'll be if you take off everything.

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Tattoo Tempest

Some Utah pool patrons are upset about a tattoo.

Specifically, a tattoo depicting an angel with nude breasts, on the back of a woman.
Laura Call was visiting the pool about two weeks ago with her husband, 1-year-old daughter and another couple. She said she — and those with her — became concerned after seeing a detailed tattoo depicting a woman’s breasts on an individual’s back. Call said she complained to a lifeguard, but nothing was done.“With it being so graphic, especially at a public place, I don’t think it should be allowed,” she said.
Take note that this is the only complaint the city has received, but only one noisy moralist seems to be enough these days to make politicians consider passing restrictive laws and ordinances.

The director of the Parks and Recreation department says that the city is in a bit of a "pickle" over the incident and promises to "talk to other professionals in the state" before making a decision. Call wants the city to force people with "offensive" tattoos to cover up.

Most of the public responses to the news article are supportive of the woman with the tattoo. Stephen says:
" As a point of reference, topless female bathing is socialy acceptable on most European beaches. Advertisement in Europe display topless or even naked bodies, and naked sex is viewed on German and Italian television. If such practices are not within the realm of family ethics, one need only teach this to their children. Demanding that all of society conform to conservative morals is one of the things Americans point to as distasteful in some Middle Eastern cultures. "
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The Nude Defense

A woman upset about being arrested in a building slated for demolition showed up for court in the nude. The judge was not impressed and sentenced her to 90 days in jail.

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Nudist Photo of the Day 7/31/08

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

100,000 Page Views

According to Google Analytics, today this blog passed the 100,000 page views mark for July, a new milestone. Thanks so much to everyone who stops by every day!

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Rethinking the Baggy Pants Ban

The Jasper City Council in South Carolina is rethinking the proposed baggy pants ban, which could have put offenders in jail for up to 30 days.
Opponents of the ban have pointed out potential pitfalls in the wording: Does it apply to swimwear? To people on private property but in public view? To garments besides pants specifically? To people wearing shirts that cover their otherwise exposed waistlines?
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Baring It for Fybromyalgia

32 year-old Bianca Embley has suffered from fybromyalgia for 10 years, and she hopes to raise awareness of the disease by posing nude for a "Polka Dot Gals" calendar.
A spokesman for the Fibromyalgia Association welcomed Bianca's campaign.

She said: "Bianca has been determined to reach a wider audience to raise awareness of fibromyalgia and her calendar is certainly going places we have not reached before.

"We applaud her tenacity in producing the calendar and we are sure this is going to be a successful venture."
The calendar can be purchased here.

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Topless Sunbathing on the Way Out in France?

I'm always skeptical of this type of article claiming a shift in culture while offering no substantive proof aside from a few anecdotal observations. Reports claim that topless sunbathing by women is on the decline in France.
For some it is simply a change in fashion, for others it marks a new conservatism sweeping France. Yet others say it is to do with increased health concerns about skin cancer and sensitivities to the growing Muslim community.

"It is seen as a bit vulgar now," said Sabina Hourdin, 38, from Paris, holidaying in St Tropez. "It is like mini-skirts. You don't show your legs any more, you cover them up more.

"In the 70s and 80s less was considered more when it came to clothes but now that has changed. It has gone out of fashion."
This might be true, at least from an observational point of view, but how does a "change in fashion" account for the fact that the naturist section of Cap d'Agde in France swells to a population of 40,000 in season. Maybe mere topfreedom is no longer appealing, that people are chosing nude sunbathing instead.

A British columnist welcomes the reported cover-up.
The Brits I have seen this summer, however, seem immune both to any question of modesty or health warnings. In London's parks, young women strip down to their bras and knickers and stretch out. The men, bare-chested or sporting baggy shorts, are similarly lacking in aesthetic appeal. Last week, in Italy with my mother - both of us are of southern Italian origin, therefore not pasty-skinned - we watched from beneath our hats and parasols as an almost naked English couple cooked themselves to the colour of a rare lamb roast.
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Those Pesky Breasts

A visitor to a Norfolk art gallery complained about the bare female breasts on a drawing, so the owner improvised by placing paper plate pasties over the offending images.
“I just feel like a woman’s private parts are hers,” said Jane Bruno, 42, of Suffolk, who added she would rather not see exposed breasts in public.

“Because it is art, it doesn’t offend me that way,” said Jaz Brown, 26, a Virginia Beach construction worker on a break. “Art is trying to capture the person. I think it’s beautiful.”

“What about little kids, though?” said his co-worker, Daniel Pitino, 35, of Virginia Beach. “Not sure. Not sure.”
Not sure? Really? Someone tell Daniel that the female breast is biologically designed for children. And while you are at it, tell him that kids can deal with the truth. If a child has a question about the female breast, it's perfectly OK to tell him or her that the breast is what feeds babies, that it is a symbol of life and nourishment, and when it is depicted in art it is a thing of beauty, something to be admired and appreciated, not shunned and feared.

Just grow up a little, people, this is just pure ignorance.

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Nakedjen's Dilemma

Nakedjen, who throws off her clothes in public on a regular basis, was flashed by an exhibitionist while she was walking her dogs. It's a perfect example of irony.

But Jen has a dilemma. Since she is an exhibitionist herself, should she report the man to the police, or simply forget about it?

Since she blogged about the incident today, I guess there's no forgetting. So what should she do?

Exhibitionism is a complex subject since it encompasses so many variations on the same theme. Some people consider nudists to be exhibitionists. Also falling under the definition is stripping, mooning, streaking, flashing of the female breasts, and virtually any act involving the exposure of the genitals, breasts or buttocks.

It seems fair to say that exhibitionism exists only because we are a clothed society. One cannot expose that which is already exposed.

In Jen's case, she was flashed by a man exposing his erect penis. Such exhibitionism is done for a sexual thrill, and is more likely a fetish than anything else.

From everything I've read about nakedjen, she likes to get naked primarily as a means to promote body acceptance, and freedom. Her behavior is much closer to nudism.

Unimpressed by the man's naked genitals, Jen tried to talk to him, which only confused him so he ran away.

I don't know what the law in Utah is for indecent exposure, but I feel pretty confident in saying that the flasher committed a crime, and Jen, for not reporting the crime, could possibly be an accessory. A crime is a crime even if you don't agree with the law.

Chances are that the man will repeat the crime, and Jen has done nothing to stop him. Police don't think kindly about people who fail to report crimes.

I fully understand the dilemma. Jen likes to get naked in public, and most laws do not differentiate between nudity as an expression of freedom, and nudity for a sexual thrill.

Had Jen come across a free hiker, or a woman sunbathing topfree, or someone skinny-dipping in a pond, I'd say live and let live.

But this guy could be disturbed, or even dangerous. Who's to say that he's not a rapist in the making?

So, nakedjen should have reported the incident. Men flashing their erect penises is not nudism, or naturism, and would not be tolerated in situations of social nudity. In fact, such a display at a nudist resort will likely be met with a response far more severe than Jen's reaction.

Ultimately the laws need to define differences between types of nudity. College students should not be treated as criminals for streaking, or mooning, and placed in the same category as sex offenders.

Jen writes:
which is more about my issue here. that this public act of nudity is considered offensive. i'm not sure that it should be. it's just a naked body. which each and every one of us have. we all have a naked body underneath our clothes. and it is just that culturally we have chosen (or perhaps more appropriately have been brainwashed) to find that naked body offensive.

i, personally, don't find it offensive. just as i didn't find the man who was naked in the dog park this morning offensive in the least.

so i won't be calling the police. because i was not offended. but i still am struggling with the fact that my body offends, that he was hoping to offend with his nudity, and that we as a culture find nudity offensive.
Sorry, Jen. While I sympathize with your dilemma, and your personal feelings, this incident was not just a "naked body", it was a man confronting you with the intent of getting a sexual thrill. He might also have been hoping that you would have been thrilled, too. Rape is not sex, it is violence, and flashing an erect penis in a park is not nudity, it's a crime.

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Sexism and the Female Breast

The obsession with female breasts continues. On the one hand, advocates of public breastfeeding and topfree equality argue that they're "just breasts" and its no big deal, but on the other hand breasts dominate all modern media as sexual objects used to sell virtually everything.

It is generally considered that a woman who displays cleavage, or bares here breasts, will not be taken seriously as an actress, or in the business world. Contrary to this widespread belief, one blogger believes the opposite.
As the debate is often had whether or not feminine wiles are to be displayed during working hours, (surveys have discovered it's mostly women that object to other women displaying it), it becomes plain to see that a little boobage might in fact help women get ahead from the men. Of course no self-respecting women will be taken seriously when they cross the line between pornography and art, but at least it's good to know how to get the promotion over a male co-worker...
Let's go back to one year ago when Hillary Clinton appeared in the Senate showing the slightest bit of cleavage.
The cleavage, however, is an exceptional kind of flourish. After all, it's not a matter of what she's wearing but rather what's being revealed. It's tempting to say that the cleavage stirs the same kind of discomfort that might be churned up after spotting Rudy Giuliani with his shirt unbuttoned just a smidge too far. No one wants to see that. But really, it was more like catching a man with his fly unzipped. Just look away!
I don't think that Hillary showed even the slightest bit of cleavage since that day because of the uproar it caused.

If cleavage is indeed something that can help a woman get ahead of a man, then Hillary would have won in the primaries.

It's ludicrous to suggest that the size of a woman's breasts, and sexy display of cleavage, leads to success. Oh sure, there are infantile men who will salivate (think of Jack Nicholson's character Jonathan in "Carnal Knowledge), and those who would exploit breasts for profit (think Hugh Hefner), but if you honestly assess the number of women who have rode to the top exploiting their breasts, it's a lonely mountaintop.

Women like Dorothy Stratten, Jayne Mansfield, Marilyn Monroe and Anna Nicole Smith all died tragically. The only woman that comes immediately to mind who achieved success while displaying her assets was Erin Brockovich, but her story was immediately exploited by Hollywood, putting Julia Roberts in to the role of the sexy legal clerk.

Yes, America loves female breasts, as long as they can be used to sell products, magazines, television shows and movies, otherwise put them away where they belong, under a turtleneck sweater, if you want to be taken seriously.

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Nudist Photo of the Day 7/30/08

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Boob Police Strike in New Zealand

Family First in New Zealand is calling for the Auckland City Council to ban the annual Boobs on Bikes parade.
"Most New Zealanders know it is indecent and inappropriate to be topless in a public place - which is why there is no acceptance of the behaviour in schools, workplaces, retail shops or public gatherings."

"Previously we could depend on the police to stop inappropriate displays like the Boobs on Bikes parade, but an increasingly liberal interpretation of what is deemed offensive behaviour in public under the Crimes Act by both the police and judges means that until a political party or individual MP with backbone is willing to have the Crimes Act 'toughened up' to more clearly define 'offensive behaviour', the problem will continue."
Last time I checked, schools, workplaces and retail shops all require shirts, pants and shoes from all, men and women both. Using this illogical logic, then it should also be "indecent" for men to take their shirts off in public.

Notice how these moralists throw around words like "offensive" and "indecent" and "inappropriate", yet they never come up with a concrete argument against topfree equality. It's just mock outrage and moral indignation, based solely on personal preferences and not in reality, or in factual law.

I've seen a lot of female breasts in the last couple of years. Not one has done me the slightest bit of harm.

The simple solution for these soldiers of morality is for them to stay home, or wear blinders while the parade is going on.

We need to stop using the term "boob" for the female breast and return it to the original meaning, which is the definition of someone who is regarded as unintelligent or ignorant.

The moralists at Family First are the real boobs.

Update: Organizers vow that the parade will go on despite a last-minute bylaw change.

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Death at Indiana Nudist Resort

A 48 year-old man apparently drowned at a nudist resort near Valparaiso, Indiana. Why do news organizations continue to use the pejorative "colony" to describe nudist resorts?

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Obsessed With Breasts

I don't quite understand why, but it seems to be perfectly acceptable to analyze women strictly on the size and shape of their breasts. Annika Harris on writes a particularly offensive post.
To me, Raven-Symone represents a normal body size. She has curves that are proportional to her height, and she’s one of a few thick girls catering to the preteen girl demographic. But every time I watch That’s So Raven, I wonder why her breasts and the rest of her torso are always covered because it makes her look larger than she really is. Then I realized this is a technique to make Raven, 22, look more like a teenager for her roles on that show and in The Cheetah Girls movies. But choosing to cover her curves has led to a malicious debate online: Is Raven fat or all breasts?
Harris critiques the breasts of six female celebrities in the article, which has absolutely no redeeming value except that it gives me an opportunity to point out how offensive it is.

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Nudist Photo of the Day 7/29/08

Monday, July 28, 2008

Focusing on the Negative

Dr. Marty Klein has a new blog post in which he notes that discussions about sexual matters always have a tendency to include the negatives.
Just as some anti-sexuals can’t see a female breast, hear the word “penis,” or see two men holding hands without thinking SEX, some people can’t hear about sex without thinking DANGER. A coalition of well-meaning professionals, cynical politicians, end-of-days religious leaders, and frightened lay people has turned ordinary sexuality into a public health crisis. Their anti-secular, anti-democratic, anti-teen, anti-woman solutions are damaging our nation, our relationships, and our children far more than mere sexuality possibly could.
It's the same for nudism. People cannot seem to talk about the clothes-free lifestyle without bringing up the potential negative aspects, such as unfounded fears of psychological damage to children, the worries about predators and peeping Toms, the perceived lack of morality, etc.

There is no evidence that I know of that shows that nudity ever harmed anyone, unless they were naked in a snowstorm. Nobody ever died from seeing Michelangelo's statue of David, and if nudists and naturists are engaging in something dangerous to society, why are they always smiling in photos?

When I was growing up in the sixties, it was considered shameful for a pregnant woman to be seen in public. If a schoolteacher became pregnant, she had to leave her job before the baby bump began to show. And forget about breastfeeding - the bottle ruled. In some ways we have gotten better in accepting our natural sexuality, but in others it has gotten worse.

It seems that when it comes to matters of sexuality, our society has a collective mental block. We focus on the tasks set before us by society's blueprint, rarely coloring outside of the lines, accepting the general consensus of the way things should be. Sexuality is something that has become taboo in the sense that we don't deal with it honestly, but rather prefer to have it presented to us as a product delivered by mass media, from swimsuit magazines to pornographic films.

Just about anyone will look at a nudist magazine, but very few people will actually take their clothes off in social situations. Too many negatives flood the mind - what will my family and friends think, will I look good enough to be naked, will I be too cold, or too hot, will I get a sunburn, what if I get aroused, and so on. And most who do venture into nudism rarely tell their friends, family and employers, preferring to be known only by a first name, or even a pseudonym. Take me for example.

The best defense against these nagging nabobs of negativism is to keep pushing for the truth. Dr. Marty Klein is one voice in the wilderness who is trying to get through to people. Spread the word.

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Fun, Liberating, and Strange

Inspired by a recent NPR story, Liz George and her man decided to bare it all at Gunnison Beach.

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Mickie James aka Alexis Laree Nude Photos Online

The reigning WWE Women's Champion Mickie James has posed for some pretty graphic, even pornographic, nude photos online. James is of Native American heritage, was raised on a farm and loves horses, and is studying for her Bachelor of Arts degree in operations management, in addition to being one of the most popular women wrestlers in the world. So why would she pose for explicit photos?

I don't know. Maybe it was for the money, maybe it was for the publicity, but maybe she did it because she is just proud of her own body and sexuality and doesn't give a damn what people think.

It's just unusual that someone who has already achieved celebrity would pose for erotic photos. Certainly in part it's symtomatic of the pornification of society, and the increasing acceptance of the sexualization of all nudity, and the exploitation of women.

Whatever the reason, the photos have created an Internet firestorm.

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The Art Critic

It's good news that the sale of 10 photos raised over $10,000 for the New Zealand Aids Foundation, but the description of the arts works could have been a little more appreciative of the aesthetics.
Of the ten photos at the Stolen Girlfriends Club auction, four featured full frontal nudity, five featured breasts, three featured topless girls with breasts obscured from view, two featured wild animals - a crocodile and a bear, alongside or ridden by a nude or scantily clad model - three featured Australia's next big thing model Louise Van de Vorst, and one featured a 'mangina'.
At least the reporter can count to ten.

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There's a Polish Joke Here Somewhere

Hey, give me a break, my grandparents emigrated from Poland, so I have a license to tell Polish jokes.

That doesn't excuse the clothed Polish people who are crossing the newly-opened border with Germany to gawk at the naturists on the FKK beach.
"It is unheard of. People sunning themselves in the nude! And right on the coast, where normal people go walking," Stanislawa Borecka, a 63-year-old from the Polish town of Szczecin, told the Märkische Allgemeine newspaper. "What should I tell my grandson?"

But for Germans of all ages who enjoy swimming and sunbathing on naturist - or FKK (free body culture) - beaches, the disapproving glances from Polish walkers are incomprehensible and intrusive.

"It's an FKK beach. It's awful that fully dressed Polish people come and stare at us," said 46-year-old Elke Bernholz.
Q. What does a Polack wear to a nudist beach?
A. Binoculars.

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Victory for British Naturists

After a two and a half year battle, a British company has abandoned plans to build apartments overlooking a traditional clothes-free beach, allowing the naturists to stay.
Mike Houlsby of the Eastney Naturist Beach Liaison Group said: 'Nudists have been using the beach since the mid-1930s and the MoD always turned a blind eye.'

The 51-year-old father of one from Portsmouth added: 'On a sunny weekend hundreds of us of all ages and from all over come to enjoy the beach.'
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Nudist Photo of the Day 7/28/08

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Is Stripping an Art?

That's the question being asked in a small Iowa community.
It all began on July 21, 2007, at Shotgun Geniez in Hamburg, where the sheriff's 17-year-old niece climbed up on stage and stripped off her clothing. Owner Clarence Judy was charged with violating Iowa's public indecent exposure law.

Judy responded that the law doesn't apply to a "theater, concert hall, art center, museum, or similar establishments" devoted to the arts or theatrical performances.

"Dance has been considered one of the arts, as is sculpture, painting and anything else like that. What Clarence has is a club where people can come and perform," said Michael Murphy, Judy's attorney.Murphy also noted that the club has a gallery selling collectible posters and other art. And it provides patrons with sketch pads.

Fremont County Attorney Margaret Johnson said it's all nonsense.
No, it's not all nonsense.

Take a look at the image above, from a 1934 issue of Vanity Fair, in which the artist pairs fan dancer Sally Rand with choreographer Martha Graham. Striptease and burlesque was elevated to an art form long ago. Somewhere along the line burlesque faded away, to be replaced by cheap strip joints in seedy areas of towns. Restrictive zoning and tough ordinances have thrown most clubs into the ash heaps of society.

Every time someone wants to make stripping more respectable, along come the moralists like the ones in Iowa who incite the public with scare tactics, such as the comments of Fremont County attorney Margaret Johnson.
"Are you saying that minors can't be protected? Can a group of 12-year-olds come down and go in and dance nude and it's OK? I don't think that's what the Legislature had in mind when it made those additional provisions," Johnson said.
I really despise when people resort to such dishonest exaggerations. Nobody expects 12 year-old children to start stripping at this Iowa club. The 17 year-old who sneaked in now dances there legally since she is now 18.

This Iowa case could have repercussions for strip clubs across the state if the judge rules that the club is not a legitimate theatre. Maybe they just need to take stripping back to the downtown theatres like the old Burlesque days, if it's just a matter of venue. That'll really confuse the moralists.

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Oh, Christ!

A statue of Jesus with a full erection is at the center of a case that promises to test Britain's decency laws.
Despite signs warning of the exhibition’s explicit nature, the gallery, which opened in 2003 after a £35million grant from the Arts Council, received numerous complaints.

A private prosecution has now been launched and the first hearing in what could prove a landmark case has been set for September.

Legal documents claim that the gallery has both offended public decency and breached Section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986.
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Haulover Beach Celebrates its 17th Birthday

And, naturally, everyone is wearing their birthday suits.
Annie Bernstein of Tamarac has been coming to Haulover Beach to shed her clothes and swim for 15 years. She said the beach has a more friendly atmosphere than its clothed counterparts, as she observed on a recent trip to a Fort Lauderdale beach with her 16-year-old stepdaughter. ''Everyone was hitting on her -- and that's with a bathing suit on,'' Bernstein said. ``That doesn't happen here.''
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Gratuitous Nudity

Remember those wonderful days when nudity in movies had nothing to do with the plot? Jason Reitman recalls a scene in one of his dad's films. Stripes, like the fourth or fifth scene, Bill Murray is having a normal conversation with his girlfriend at home and she's topless in it. And I remember thinking this is so strange. Like, there's really no reason for her to have her top off right now. It would never fly today. It seems as though things have cleaned up in a sad way.
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Showcasing Erotic Art

Is it art, or is it pornography - or, perhaps, it it both? The Erotic Heritage Museum is opening in Las Vegas. Associate curator Laura Henkel holds a doctorate in human sexuality from San Francisco's Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality.
The nonprofit museum is being billed as a "celebration of the human sexual experience," designed "to preserve wonders of the erotic imagination," with a special focus on the American Sexual Revolution.

"I want people to leave with a smile but still learn something," Henkel said.
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Growing Up as a Naturist

Steven Vickers, spokesman for AANR, grew up as a naturist, living at Cypress Cove with his grandparents.
In elementary school, it wasn't a big deal because nobody really paid attention. Nobody knew what nudity was. In middle school, it was a little tougher because that's kind of when personality starts generating and cliques [develop]. That's the time when you're wearing the wrong shoes, you'll get picked on. In high school, everyone was like "Can you invite me out?"
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Nudist Photo of the Day 7/27/08

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Fear of the Bikini

A survey shows that 80% of British women will not wear a bikini because of poor body image.
"There is so much pressure for women to slim down and look perfect before they bare all in a bikini. Every woman I know has issues with some part of her body.

"I do think you become more comfortable with yourself as you get older - but that doesn't mean you feel 100 per cent happy with your body in a bikini."
People think that because nudists are comfortable in their own skin, that they are happy with their bodies. I don't think that anyone has some body part that they would not like to change. It's not that nudists don't care - they are just as concerned with being healthy, maintaining a normal weight, and looking good. The difference is that nudists are accepting of all body types, shapes and sizes. No body is perfect, but every body is good.

The annual ritual of buying a swimsuit is a time of dread for most women. For the sake of modesty, we continue to support a garment that doesn't really hide anything, is uncomfortable, doesn't keep you dry, and can actually cause problems such as sea bather's eruption and bikini bottom.

Bathing suits are one of the stupidest creations of humankind.

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13 Students Charged With Sending Nude Photos

Thirteen students at Mount Vernon High School in Ohio are facing charges of "disseminating matter harmful to juveniles" by transmitting nude photos of themselves with cell phones.
The Knox County prosecutor said that he hopes that by taking the students to court that he will send a message to other teenagers who think about sending similar photographs on their cell phones.

"It can be serious and it's something that can draw the attention of the justice system," said assistant Knox County prosecutor Chip McConville.
McConville was hired in December to be "primarily responsible for juvenile prosecutions". Ruining young lives is not the answer to this technological phenomenon of teenages taking nude photos of themselves. Our society refuses to try and understand why this is happening, and reacts in the only way it knows how, to criminalize it.

If you go to a bankruptcy lawyer, you will be advised to declare bankruptcy. A plastic surgeon will not tell you that you look just fine and to forget about the nose job. And a juvenile prosecutor will not tell you to say you're sorry and to go home - he will throw the book at you. That's his job.

Take this challenge to society and put it in the hands of psycologists and counselors who can advise the children about what they are doing. This is NOT a crime, it is a manifestation of normal, healthy teen sexuality.

These 13 young lives are about to be ruined by an overzealous prosecutor. People need to stand up for their children.

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In the Crucible

When Missouri state representative Curt Dougherty was asked to speak in San Diego for the 2006 AANR Convention at DeAnza Springs Resort near San Diego, he agreed, but his trip has now become fodder for political opponents. An investigation revealed that the state of Missouri incurred no expenses for the trip, but the primary reason for the witch hunt seems to be to "expose" Dougherty as being a nudist, or at least as being on the side of nudists.

The stigma still exists.

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Amazing Nude Maize Maze

Hundreds of British naturists are expected to lose themselves in an 18 acre maize maze, which is a recreation of the Statue of Liberty.
(Farmer Tom) Pearcy is hoping this year's New York landmark will prove popular with naturists visiting the maze for the annual naked event.He said: "Even last year when the British summer failed to show, we still had over 200 naturists braving the weather to explore the maze in the buff. I hope that we have a warmer summer evening for this year's event."
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Lawyer Moonlights as Nude Model

While on leave for stress, Clifford Allison, a British lawer working for the Crown Prosecution Service, is advertising that he is available for "lingerie, glamour, implied nude, adult and topless" modelling work.
His attempts at forging a new career in the theatrical world have caused widespread astonishment in the legal profession and at CPS headquarters.

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Sir Ken Macdonald QC, is said to be baffled by Mr Allison's ability to carry out modelling work while supposedly under too much stress to return to his desk.
If he was supplementing his income by flipping burgers, nobody would care, but once the clothes start coming off, suddenly everybody's concerned.

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Nudist Photo of the Day 7/26/08

Friday, July 25, 2008

Australian Man "Stupid" for Nude Walk

Calling himself "stupid", a 37 year-old Australian man pled guilty to "obscenely exposing himself". The judge stated that the crime was "not the most serious she had seen." The man was walking home at 1:23 AM on New Year's Day, fully naked with his clothes under his arm. He was spotted by police and charged with "wilful and obscene exposure in or near a public place or school", even though apparently nobody filed a complaint, and schools are not even open at that time. This guy needed a better lawyer.

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55,000 Expected at Sexpo

The Sexpo event in Sydney, Australia, will draw more people in four days than the total number of members in AANR.

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Nude in Zero Gravity

It took six years of planning, but artist Bradley Pitts finally had his zero gravity nude experience.
Pitts wanted to experience the pure sensation of weightlessness and opted to surrender his other senses to be able to fully immerse himself in space. He closed his eyes, wore earplugs and just let his body drift through space.

"Blind, deaf, and nude is definitely the way to experience parabolic flight!" Pitts said.
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Wallace Baine was witness to the woman who walked nude down Pacific Avenue in Santa Cruz recently.
In a better world, a story like this would expose us all to the brutal reality of people walking the streets, in clothes or otherwise, who desperately need treatment of one kind or another. But in this world, the story is all about nudity, the overblown taboo that still exerts a weird kind of Kryptonite-like power over most people. We have too many real outrages to deal with in this country to get all flustered about naked people.
I don't know why the woman decided to walk naked down a public street. Perhaps it was a bit of performance art, the result of a dare, or maybe she was just too hot in her clothes. But I doubt that she was "mentally ill" as the writer suggests, but he is correct in pointing out that whenever nudity is involved in anything, it overshadows any other facts in a story. If someone flees a blaze in the all-together, it's not the fire that people want to know about, it's the nudity. People are just fascinated with nudity of any type, and that is because society has made it taboo.

Baine goes on to say:
Still, here's hoping that this incident will not lead to an explosion of nudity downtown.
On one hand he says it's nothing to get "flustered" about, and on the other he fears more such incidents. Baine has fallen victim to his own Kryptonite theory.

They could make nudity legal in all public areas of the United States tomorrow, and only a very small handful of people would go about in the nude. Society is far too heavily invested in clothing for a paradigm shift from textiles to clothes-free to occur overnight.

Most nudists would be more than happy to have some public areas set aside for nude sunbathing and recreation. There is no support for widespread public nudity.

But when it does occur, such as with the Santa Cruz woman, it should be no big deal.

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Parenting in the Nude

Kelly Mills offers a common sense approach to nudity at home.
I have not become a streaker or topless waitress or nudist during my parenting years. I don't vacuum naked or answer the door in my towel. I have my limits and I have just a teensy bit of sensitivity to the people around me. But for those that live with me, including my 7-year-old child, it's not uncommon for me to try and have a conversation while changing my clothes or showering. I never rush over to grab a fig leaf. I doubt I would have thought twice about this except last year, when I was reading (for, um, journalistic reasons) about Britney Spears' custody case, there was mention of the fact that she walked around naked in front of her kids, and then I read a whole discussion on Slate about how while kids under 3 won't be bugged by nudity, you should start covering up before the children get old enough to remember it.
Kelly is absolutely right - she does not have to be a nudist in order to understand that ordinary, everyday nudity in the home is healthy for the entire family. Better to have children learn about their own bodies, and how they change with maturity, than from porn magazines, from other children, or from sex education classes.

Britney Spears always got a "bum rap" for her home nudity, and it's good to hear that someone was influenced in a positive manner from the all the publicity.

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Our Way or the Highway

Sandy Terraces on Cape Cod is trying again to promote its open house this weekend. The current article is an improvement over the last one, but still fails to appeal to a younger generation.
So the camp is based on naked communal living. "It is each generation's job to make it better for the next generation," said (operations manager Dan) Liddle. His generation of nudists built the pavilion and is planning on installing a swimming pool (the new bathhouse is already under construction). Members' talents are contributed to keeping things going: Liddle himself is a woodworker, and does everything from mending fences to whatever woodwork is needed at the camp. Everyone pitches in at the pavilion for cooking detail, entertainment organization, repairing roads, etc.

"In communal living you learn to get along, or if you don't, you just don't fit in," said Liddle.
So the message is "our way or the highway". This is not the slogan that will attract hoards of new members; in fact, it will keep people away.

The nudist "camp" model is dead, gone with the drive-in movie, 30 cent-a-gallon gasoline, and woolen bathing costumes.

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Nude Flag Photo Controversy in Peru

Video report here.

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