I like walking around buck naked as much as the next guy. Actually, a lot more than the next guy. Hell, I’m naked right now. It’s one of the perks that comes with writing your own blog. It’s liberating, and it feels great. The other people in the library are a little uncomfortable, but that’s their problem.
It has come to my attention that it’s currently not against the law to run around clothes-free in San Francisco. For this amateur nudist, that’s like learning that Santa Claus really does exist, there really is a Tooth Fairy, and the Easter Bunny does, in fact, excrete colored eggs. Maybe I should move there. It sounds magical, people of all shapes and sizes strutting around bare-assed; tumbleweeds of short ‘n curlies blowing gently down the street…
I figure if we were meant to wear clothes, we would be born swaddled in a darling set of OshKosh B’Gosh overalls. Of course, if that were the case, the use of epidural anesthesia would skyrocket because giving birth would become uncomfortable, even painful in some cases.
But you get my point. Being naked feels good. And being naked outdoors feels great. Obviously, I don’t really go out in public au naturel, because I have to fit into society. Plus, it’s illegal here and I don’t want to get arrested for Insufficient Exposure, or worse, Assault With a Friendly Weapon.
And you just can’t be naked in some settings, say, a Michael Franti concert, and then don some clothing for other situations and not expect there to be some awkward overlap. For example, you might have a parent-teacher conference with your daughter’s third grade teacher, and you don’t want to hear this: “Brittany is doing well in English, still coming along in math, and…by the way, are you seeking treatment for those genital warts? I saw you at the concert last night and I thought you’d smuggled in a cauliflower.”
Apparently, in San Francisco public nudity is not a big cause for concern, being legal and all. Oh, I’m sure that a large segment of society is not ready for such utopian lifestyle manifestations. A lot of people don’t want to share the sidewalk with other people who walk around showing their hoo-hahs. Plop your pimply white bare ass down on a seat next to an old lady on the BART, and it doesn’t matter how strategically you’re holding your computer bag, buddy. She’s going to be creeped out, your small talk about the dismal Niners O-line notwithstanding. And she knows that you’re smearing junk tracks all over the seat.
Hence the proposed legislation designed to address the snail trails, gravy stains, crotch crumbs and various skid marks left on public surfaces by the fabrically challenged. City Supervisor Scott Wiener, according to the Associated Press, is proposing that nudists put a towel or cloth or perhaps an Oakland Raiders bandana between their ass and any public seat. He’s also proposing that naked folk must cover up their goodies before going into a restaurant. The first part of this makes sense as a public sanitation/health aspect, but it’s the restaurant bareness ban that will likely ruffle the most feathers.
First no smoking in restaurants, and now this? I can hear the outcry already. True, no one has ever caught skin cancer from second-hand nudity, but that’s not the real issue. I know there are a lot of people out there who either have a good body image or (like me) just don’t care what other people think. It doesn’t bother me if a lady at the next table glances at my naked bulk and changes her order from a foot-long corn dog to a plate of cocktail franks. I’m comfortable in my own skin, and you’ll just have to deal with it. This is about personal freedom. If we can’t belly up to the bar at a T.G.I. Fridays, naked as a jaybird, sucking down beer and gobbling fried mozzarella sticks, then why are we fighting two wars?
Wiener, who represents the Castro district (which was notably the home of Harvey Milk), is also proposing a series of fines for those who don’t put something between their DNA sample and a public seat, or for going into a restaurant with your lil’ maître d hanging out. The first offense would be a $100 fine, the second $200, and the third offense could be a misdemeanor punishable by up to a $1000 fine and a year in the poke.
That’s all well and good in theory, Supervisor Wiener (can I just call you Super Wiener?), but let’s say the Birthday Suit Task Force starts popping naked people on the street, issuing $100 fines when they witness skin-to-park-bench contact.
Where do they think the offenders are going to keep their money?