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Promoting Intimacy and Other-Centered Sexuality
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It's a nude nude, nude, nude world
By ERMA BOMBECK
WARNING: This column contains the word "nudity" - several times - and may create mental pictures that cause you to laugh yourself to death.
I am a person who has to know someone five years before I remove the jacket of a sleeveless dress to reveal my Pillsbury's Doughboy upper arms. That's just so you know where I'm coming from. But I have to admit, there's something intriguing about people who appreciate the freedom and relief from the pressure of worrying about what to wear.
To fill you in, the American Association for Nude Recreation has 46,000 members, 47 percent of whom earn more than $50,000 a year and 77 percent of whom are college educated. Yet they are a different membership than AARP.
When the biographies of U.S. presidents are written, it seems relevant to point out that at least three of them held meetings and made decisions with men fully clothed, while they stood there buck naked.
In the recently published book Character Above All, by Robert A. Wilson, contributor Richard Reeves reports:
"It's not an accident that so many presidents have conferences with their people where they're naked and the people are wearing suits. Kennedy held court in the bathtub or the swimming pool, naked, holding meetings with men in suits walking back and forth or sitting on the bathtub or the toilet or the floor - you don't have to be Freud to figure what's going on there. Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon did the same kind of things."
And if that doesn't blow your mind, imagine coming face to face - that's not right - with Winston Churchill roaming the halls at night in the buff. He had to be the bravest man in the world to wander around like that with a lighted cigar.
It was rumored that Ernest Hemingway wrote naked, standing at a typewriter waist high. Women novelists couldn't do that. They couldn't hold in their stomachs that long.
Acceptance of nudity is gaining ground. Two years ago a cruise company, Bare Necessities, launched its first nude cruise. It sold out. "It's not a cheap thrill or a free-for-all on the seas," says Nancy Tiemann, the owner of the line. "Travelers have the option of throwing something on for dinner, as it can get a little chilly aboard."
The higher the skirts go, the lower the bodices drop, the more midriff that is exposed, the more I'm convinced that we are going in a direction where accessories will be reduced to car keys hanging from a pierced ear.
I try to have an open mind about this. Show me a world without wicker chairs, and I'll think about it.
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