Archive for Birthday Suitable

It didn’t happen Today

I got a smidgen of traffic from the Today show, or at least their Web site, and the referring link didn’t explain what for, so I assumed it was to reproach me for mocking Kathie Lee and/or Hoda. Turned out that someone had wandered into their archives and found this two-year-old piece about World Naked Gardening Day, which quotes my eight-year-old post on the possible disadvantages thereof.

WNGD this year, incidentally, is tomorrow.

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Cutting a goddess down to size

Well, we finally have a source for that Hello Kitty vodka seen here last spring. As suspected, it’s a fabrication; as not suspected, it’s part of a collection by artist Anna Utopia Giordano, who specializes in messing with her audience’s heads digitally. There’s also a Barbie vodka and a Lego tequila, and now I understand why the top of the bottle was cropped out.

A more recent project, “Venus,” is on exhibit at Museum Het Valkhof in the Netherlands. You all know Venus: she’s your fire, what’s your desire? And she’s been portrayed, often in paintings long considered masterpieces, generally naked as the day she was born — and blessed with a certain sufficiency of flesh generally incomprehensible in these days when Beautiful and Emaciated walk arm in lath-thin arm. What to do? Giordano to the rescue, applying to the goddess the very same Photoshop techniques routinely used in fashion magazines. In Botticelli’s half-shell work, for instance, Venus has gotten an obvious tummy tuck and smoothing of her thighs and upper arms, while going up about half a cup size.

Then again, not all Renaissance painters rendered women as, um, fleshy. Jonathan Jones points out in the Guardian:

[T]here are Renaissance nudes that are just as skinny as any fashion designer could demand. The German painter Lucas Cranach the Elder portrayed strikingly thin and narrow-waisted nudes. His Venus believed you could never be too bony or wear too many hats. But he was a close friend of Martin Luther, and believed the body to be a vessel of sin. Those sensual Italians had a more abundant and generous idea of beauty.

Peter Paul Rubens was not available for comment.

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Seabiscuit and gravy

Someone styling herself “Jennifer” went on this mini-rant on Yahoo! Answers:

Is Governor Mary Fallin Unethical?
Yes she is, and has passed legislation which allow the killing of innocent animals to be processed for meat and served in our nations restaurants! Cows have been used as a source of meat as well as chicken and hogs for many years, but you don’t kill noble domestic creatures and serve them in restaurants!!! What’s next the slaughter of dogs and cats? This governor needs to step down! She is totally inhumane toward animals by allowing this legislation. She has also passed legislation that would allow the use of drones to spy on law abiding citizens. She’s apparently all for the Patriot Act and believes the rights of others should be violated as well as there privacy! What if I’m naked in my house and a perverted man who is operating the drones sees me? Do you think he will remove the drones? No! If he’s a man, he’ll wanna see a beautiful girl naked! This is a violation of MY PERSONAL PRIVACY!!! What if the drones photograph me naked? and what if I find those pictures on the internet? Guess who’s gonna be sued? That’s right the state of Oklahoma for allowing these drones to be violate my personal privacy!

Two words, honey: “Venetian blinds.”

Now if you want to complain about Fallin’s politically-motivated backflip on health-care exchanges, I am there. And I admit to being uncomfortable with equines in the stew, but at least they’re not going into my bowl.

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Frock vs. frolic

Unlike a few young actresses you could probably name, Dakota Fanning would rather you thought of her as strait-laced:

“I don’t do enough adventurous things, because I’m like, ‘I might get hurt.’ But when we were doing Night Moves, Peter [Sarsgaard], Jesse [Eisenberg], and I went to these hot springs in Oregon, and I didn’t have a bathing suit. The woman who worked there said, ‘Oh, not a problem. Clothing’s optional after 8pm.’ And I was like, ‘Whoa. No, no, no! Not doing that. Here. With any of you!'”

And she didn’t, either.

(Via Nudiarist.)

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Between the sheets

You may have read this here in 2009:

There aren’t any firm figures on how many people actually do sleep in the buff, though Esquire claims that 31 percent of men and 14 percent of women decline to play the pajama game.

More recently, we have this:

Costa Mesa-based Anna’s Linens, which sells sheets and home decor, has released a bedtime survey of 3,700 people to draw publicity to National Sleep Day, Jan. 3.

Among the findings: 8 percent of Americans sleep naked, 74 percent wear pajamas and the rest are clothed in something else.

Not that I have any worthwhile personal data to contribute, but I suspect Anna’s local customers — this is Orange County, after all — might be understating the case just a bit, and Esquire’s respondents might be overstating it.

I looked at Anna’s available sheets, which sport thread counts from 200 to 1000. (I remember a set I bought from JCPenney in the 1980s, which seemed to have a thread count of 12; it has long since been retired.) For what it’s worth, I don’t bother with anything under 300 anymore.

(With thanks to Nudiarist.)

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Decruiting station

Nudism, as an institution, perhaps has passed its shelf date:

[I]t only hinders progress. Because history has shown us that the original goal of nudism has run its course and has impacted society as much as it could. So let’s move on. Let’s not label ourselves with titles that shove us into boxes. Are you gay? Is your entire identity consumed with being attracted to people of the same gender? See? Labels are silly. The same is true with nudism.

In general, it’s not useful to define yourself in terms of any one single characteristic, unless said characteristic is actually how you make a living. But even then, one hopes for something more. An off the cuff, so to speak, interview with Susan Weaver, president of the American Association for Nude Recreation, basically tells me nothing other than that she’s in her early sixties and probably doesn’t have any clothes on right this minute. Of course, that’s all she wanted to say right then — business is business, after all — but it’s an awfully narrow portrait. And shouldn’t she be sitting on a towel? But I digress.

(Nudiarist relayed this without further comment.)

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She didn’t ask for this

You think I get strange search-engine queries? Listen to Samantha:

Guess sometimes you have to get a slap in the face in order to realize what you’re doing wrong. The list of search terms bothered me (it is that time of the month and I am being over sensitive). So with the generous support by visitors and my mother telling me to quit being such a baby and just do what you do with no apologies, I feel bad (and quite embarrassed).

Now she’s been up for only a little over a week, while I have many years of weird stuff to pick from. The difference, of course, is that she’s a young woman with, um, wardrobe issues not unlike my own. Which is why you might want to consider those links NSFW, since that’s her main topic of discussion.

(And if you go over there, don’t perv on her. She’s done nothing to deserve that sort of thing.)

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We have a wiener

The Bad Sex in Fiction Award for 2012 goes to Nancy Huston for Infrared, from which we excerpt this entirely-too-visible scene, placed after the jump for reasons which should be obvious:

Read the rest of this entry »

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The leaves are falling

Got one of these in the mail yesterday:

Bumper sticker from American Association for Nude Recreation

I must admit that until I remembered that AANR has some Canadian clubs on their membership rolls, I was wondering why a maple leaf and not a fig leaf. (And Canada has its own naturist group, anyway.)

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Each and every day of the year

One of the blessings of later life is that you can sometimes persuade the older women to doff their duds for a good cause:

What would inspire 16 women in their 70s and 80s to get nearly naked for a photographer? Apparently, Helen Mirren.

In Mirren’s 2003 movie Calendar Girls, a refined women’s club decides to raise money by selling a risqué calendar. And so things went for the Riderwood retirement community in Silver Spring, Maryland, said Beth Gordon, 79, who is Miss November in the “Going Bare For Benevolent Care” 2013 calendar and organized the project.

Sixteen retired women — all in their 70s and 80s — appear naked in the 12-month calendar that is selling for $15.

Well, they’re only naked in the sense that they don’t have any clothes on. (I’ve used this excuse myself, in fact.)

Amazon says 3-5 weeks shipping, so if you want this by New Year’s, you’d better get on the stick.

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Meanwhile in the frozen-food aisle

This promotion went over better than they anticipated:

A supermarket on the German-Danish border was stormed by a horde of naked shoppers on Saturday after offering free groceries to the first hundred punters willing to get their kit off.

Customers had camped outside the new “Priss” supermarket in the hope of being among the lucky first hundred who had been promised a basket full of free groceries worth €270 if they came in the nude.

Doesn’t sound, um, prissy to me.

And this apparently doesn’t imply a pent-up desire to go shopping in the altogether:

The police placed the number at 250, mostly Danish shoppers, who often take advantage of the cheaper alcohol and confectionary on the German side of the border.

Ah, the lure of the discount. Now that’s an incentive.

(Via this nudiarist tweet.)

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And reasonably so

The Chicagoist story on the local version of the World Naked Bike Ride is titled “Profiles in Chafing,” which implies that someone on staff is aware of the, um, physical conditions.

Although the URL suggests that the title on first publication was actually “Profiles in Sweaty Flesh,” which presumably also works.

(Either way, consider this Not Safe For Most Places.)

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Adaptive qualities

Bare Platypus reports on a possibly heartening development:

[T]his week’s story about Kathy Lee Gifford and Hoda of Today Show fame is too good to pass up.

If you hadn’t heard, Kathy Lee and Hoda were playing a bit of an on-air game based upon answering questions from a new game show. The show polls an audience about what’s considered “normal” and contestants have to guess what is and isn’t a la the Family Feud show from days gone by. The women were asked, “Is skinny dipping normal?” “Is sleeping naked normal?” To their credit, they answered “YES” to both questions (and we whole-heartily agree with Kathy Lee and Hoda about that).

Me, I’m shocked that anyone would have to ask that in the first place.

Apparently Hoda Kotb has undergone some attitude adjustment; three years ago on Today, when Kathie Lee made an offhand remark about sleeping in her birthday suit, Hoda was utterly flummoxed. Then again, one might not expect a woman born of Egyptian parents (!) in Oklahoma (!!) to be particularly enthusiastic about high levels of déshabillé, or at least to admit it on national television.

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The warmth of the sun

It’s as nothing compared to the wrath of the police:

A woman visited a Stewart’s Shop and Curtis Lumber within a few minutes of each other Tuesday — with no clothes on.

“Have a good day,” the woman told one lumberyard employee as she traipsed out.

Points for politeness, perhaps? Not that the lumberyard manager was inclined to give her any:

“No one wanted to say much to her,” he said. “It’s not a situation you want to be involved in.”

By the time law enforcement picked her up, she’d gotten dressed. Said the District Attorney: “Surprisingly, mental health found no psychiatric issues whatsoever.”

National Nude Day is still eight weeks away, so perhaps she was just jumping the gun a bit.

(Via the Consumerist.)

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Reservations may be justified

Then again, if this won’t work in Florida, it won’t work anywhere:

When times get tough, the tough get naked. At least that’s what a Florida motel owner hopes, as he turns his 32-room property into a potential magnet for nudists.

The Fawlty Towers Motel in Cocoa Beach, Fla., is set to go clothing-optional May 1, after years of declining business and increasing competition from larger chain hotels, its owner told Florida Today.

There’s no chance the business went into a downward spiral because of its name, is there?

And yes, local laws still prevail:

Hodge’s nude guests, however, may still face criminal charges of indecent exposure if they set foot — or technically, their naked private body parts — outdoors.

If you’re going to grope a girl, have the gallantry to stay in the room with her while you’re doing it.

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Seeing the true Willard

Got a note from eBay the other day, ostensibly to commemorate my 13 years as a buyer — never sold squat — but more likely to shame me into buying more stuff, that being their raison d’être after all.

And while they had links to several items, they didn’t mention this Dan Lacey painting of Mitt Romney in apparent self-pantsing mode, for which I suppose I should be grateful.

Asked for an explanation, Lacey said:

[T]he Romney is basically a self-portrait. I’m nearly an ex-Christian but have some personal faith remaining but expect nothing — Mitt is certainly coming from a unique place on that issue as well. From a purely self-promotional standpoint he needs to reveal himself to become more likeable, but how does he do that without offending? He’s been blessed by God but others cannot be unless they accept.

Um, okay, if you say so. You might want to avoid those links if you’re at the office.

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Shaking it for yourself

Melissa goes to her first YNA event, and the word “enabling” comes to mind:

Now, I don’t dance. Mom made me take tap dancing as a child and I was both no good at it and didn’t like it. I have zero music sense and just don’t know how to dance. Yet somehow, someway this group of people managed to get me on the dance floor. I won’t be quitting my day job anytime soon to become a professional dancer, but I truly did enjoy it. And as I danced, I kept thinking that I wished I could have that moment videotaped and sent to my doctor. You know, the one who said a year ago that I’d likely never walk again (somehow dancing wasn’t mentioned).

I surmise that this is the event she attended. Never underestimate the power of simply letting it all hang out, so to speak.

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Clean as a whistle

Lubbock’s Fantasy Maid Service will clean your premises — $100 an hour for one staffer, $150 for two — dressed in as little as you desire. “There is nothing illegal going on,” says owner Melissa Borrett.

Sgt. Jonathan Stewart of the Lubbock PD says otherwise: it’s a sexually-oriented service, he says, and the maids don’t have the appropriate permit for such. Of course, he’ll have to see the operation for himself, and they will cut him some slack on the price:

We offer discounts to law enforcement and other public servants(heros), including but not limited to paramedics, fire fighters, and military (active and vets). We know how busy y’all are, so let us do your housework for you while you sit back, relax, and scope out the eye candy. :)

I would have to think long and hard before engaging such a service.

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Hence the journalistic term “grabber”

This is a news article, but its opening sentence is worthy of the Bulwer-Lytton Contest:

Zot L. Szurgot allegedly walked out of her house naked, turned to five of her neighbors and started wagging her penis.

If that seems slightly, um, contradictory:

According to the First Kingdom Church of Asphodel’s website, “Zot Lynn Szurgot is one of those magical people living between genders; born and raised a boy, she lives part of eir [sic] life as a masculine union-supporting electrician and part as a feminine spiritual being.”

Um, okay. If you say so. It’s not like this has never been heard of before.

Whoever submitted this to Fark, incidentally, evidently thought that first line was better than any conceivable headline, and I wouldn’t disagree with that either.

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Somewhere east of San Diego

Dave Landman, owner of the clothing-optional DeAnza Springs Resort near Jacumba, California, would like you to know that his acquisition of the entire community of Jacumba, population 550 or thereabouts, does not mean that the whole town is expected to undress accordingly: “Everybody out there wants this to become the first naked town in the United States,” he says, “and it’s not going to happen.”

Landman says his first priority is to reopen the Jacumba Hot Springs Hotel, which is about a mile from DeAnza; this way he’ll be catering to both nudists and “textiles.”

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Something of a shortening effect

Someone identified as “I’m in your area” left the following bit of spam in handy pingback form:

[...]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[...]

With it was a URL shortened by Rashly, I gave it a looksee, and it turned out to be a page on something called “xProfiles,” featuring a young lady identified as being from, yes, this area, and while something in the back of my head (or perhaps somewhere a bit lower) appreciates the idea of a female gamer wearing damn near nothing, I don’t think it’s such a good idea to throw her any linky love lust. Especially, you know, if she’s just down the road a piece.

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Meanwhile in San Francisco

No amount of backstory, I suspect, will ever explain this:

A woman described as “heavyset” and naked except for her shoes was pulled off the J-Church line on Tuesday morning, and while cops and medical personnel were evaluating her near the intersection of 24th and Church in Noe Valley, she threw off a blanket that had been wrapped around her, walked up on the hood of one man’s car, and stomped on his windshield.

Evidently she wasn’t sick to the point of being incapacitated; heck, if she can just clamber up the front of the car in a couple of steps, she must have been in pretty decent shape, “heavyset” or not.

(The photo at the link is not safe for much of anyplace.)

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The Levolor, the better

I’m not quite sure what to make of this, but making fun of it would seem to be the least I could do:

In a survey by Fitness magazine (that could well have been underwritten by the Federation of Window Blind Manufacturers), almost two in three Americans say they often walk around the house naked.

Now what do they mean by “often”? For that matter, what do they mean by “around”? An unpajama-ed trip from the bedroom to the toilet seven nights a week has frequency going for it, but not distance, unless one of the two rooms involved is in a separate wing of the house. (And we need the date this survey was taken: in North America, at least, there’s probably more around-the-house nakedness in August than in February. Your climate may vary.)

Odds are that this neighborhood nudity has a gender tilt, since 57 percent of women said they think they look fat when glancing at themselves naked in a mirror, while 48 percent of men are thinking, “Dude, lookin’ good.”

These two statements are not strictly comparable, unless the question was worded this way:

    When you glance at yourself naked in a mirror, do you look fat?

    [  ] Yes  [  ] No

I will say here only that between my bedroom and my bathroom, there’s a full-length mirror, and I generally pay very little attention to it.

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Starkers reality

Britain’s Channel 4 last week presented a documentary called My Daughter The Teenage Nudist, and while it didn’t call to mind any particular incident in my own life — my own children tend toward the buttoned-up — it did point out the basic disconnect between older naturists, for whom nudity is a lifestyle of sorts, and the younger set, for whom it’s an occasional pastime. (One young woman said she had no particular desire to see “genitalia 24/7.”)

British Naturism, the national organisation, has suffered from declining membership in recent years, though their own survey indicates sustained interest in nude activities. A similar situation prevails in the States, where two rival groups fight for their piece of a pie that continues to shrink.

Unlike some sections of its self-conscious former colony, though, Britain has no specific anti-public-nudity law, which makes life easier for both part-time and full-time naturists. (Compare to some places not so far away where you can be threatened with jail time for taking a leak off your back porch.)

The teenager in the documentary seems normal enough: she liked the idea of the World Naked Bike Ride, and will occasionally participate in a nude event, but she’s not going to get to the point where she recoils in horror at the very thought of having to wear clothes.

(You can see this program — about 47 minutes — here. Believe me, you don’t have 47 minutes during the work day to watch this, and you probably shouldn’t try.)

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On the nature trail

One evening Emma Thompson opened the door of her home in Scotland, and there stood a policeman, reporting that “a dog walker had called the police to say he had seen ‘a naked man, about 50 years old’ walking on her land in the afternoon.

At precisely the right moment twelve-year-old Gaia chimed in from from the top of the stairs: “Wasn’t that about the time that you came up from the river, mum?”

Said Thompson of the incident:

“Making the connection, I could see the same thing happening to the policeman. And I could see him, as he backed off, and I was thinking, he’s going to go back to the station and he’s going to say, ‘You see that Emma Thompson? Her tits must be so low that from a distance they read as testicles’.”

Um, no, they’re not.

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Snow angel alert

Robert Stacy McCain has apparently chosen to wrap himself in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders:

[T]he past few days in New Hampshire, I’ve begun feeling increasingly glum, and uncharacteristic mood-swing that I at first attributed to being forced to take the Jon Huntsman campaign seriously. Later, I thought maybe I was bummed out by hanging around with those squishy RINOs from National Review during Saturday night’s debate.

It wasn’t until I picked up Sunday’s Boston Globe and saw that story about “arctic hysteria” that I realized I must be suffering from the same problem that affects the Greenlandic Inuit.

Not being in the habit of thumbing through DSM IV, I decided to see what the Wikipedants had to say about this particular syndrome:

Symptoms can include intense hysteria (screaming, uncontrolled wild behavior), depression, coprophagia, insensitivity to extreme cold (such as running around in the snow naked), echolalia (senseless repetition of overheard words) and more.

Coprophagia? Well, that would explain the grin he’s wearing in all those pictures from the road. (Or it wouldn’t. I know I certainly wouldn’t grin under those circumstances.)

Still, there are three words which should be kept in mind under the conditions: “New,” “Hampshire,” and “January.” Perhaps it wouldn’t bother the Inuit, but I must note here that the major New Hampshire nudist facility is closed until mid-May. They’re not crazy.

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And it’s $15 for a towel

It was Jeff Jarvis who first suggested flying nude as a security measure in the wake of 9/11. The suggestion may or may not have been tongue-in-cheek; little did he know that the TSA was going to inspect people’s naughty bits on a regular basis.

There is, however, another argument in favor of boarding in the buff:

Toilets in jumbos are so small that anyone larger than a jockey needs the skills of a contortionist to unzip, unbuckle, unbutton and remove clothing.

It takes a six-point turn just to wash your hands — if you can work out how to use the taps — and then you’ve got to do it all in reverse. All while worrying about the queue forming outside the door.

How many people would actually go for such a thing? Not many, I suspect, though the number is certainly nonzero:

In an entirely unscientific survey conducted by Trip Advisor, nearly four in five of the 22,091 respondents said they were willing to get their gear off when high in the sky, if it meant that other people on the flight would also be under-dressed.

The upsides include reduced plane weight, no-fuss body scans and plenty of good visual amusement when your flight is delayed.

There is, of course, a downside:

[Y]ou’d want to hope there’s no turbulence while the hostie is waving a pot of piping hot coffee above your jewels.

Even now, readers are wondering what the hell airline is it that actually serves hot coffee these days.

(Via this nudiarist tweet.)

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Make and model, not necessarily in that order

The product specialist at the auto show may in fact be a lovely woman, but she’s not there to serve as eye candy. (Okay, she’s not there just to serve as eye candy.) She’s got to know the product line cold, if only to stay ahead of the wise guys who think they can stump her. (See, for instance, this one, who epitomizes the current standard.)

Turn the clock back a few decades, and there’s less emphasis on product knowledge and more emphasis on being decorative. Mandated clothing was generally either scanty or scantier. And Curbside Classic has photographic evidence of one particular show where two of the young ladies — well, okay, they might have been wearing earrings. Hard to tell at this distance.

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Bashfully yours

Heaven knows I’ve seen versions of this complaint all over the place:

It is a simple fact that most nudists are men and therefore most of our readers are male. For men, nudism seems to be easier to adopt. Perhaps it is because our bodies are not “sexualized” by society in the way the female form has always been. Perhaps it is women’s fondness for fashion. Whatever the reasons, almost every nudist man will experience difficulty in convincing his wife, girlfriend or female friend to take a step forward and give nudism a try.

I’m having a little trouble with that “simple fact.” It is certainly true that most nudists who identify as such on the Net are men, and I would not doubt that most of this guy’s readers are in fact men. I will even contribute a corroborating data point to the “will experience difficulty” statement, though it’s thirty-odd years old and may not count for much nowadays.

But I wonder if maybe he’s keeping a version of the “no true Scotsman” argument under the kilt he isn’t wearing. There is, I have come to believe, no actual shortage of women who, left alone to their own devices (no, not those devices, necessarily), will leave their clothes in the closet. They’re comfortable with that.

But getting them out of the house that way is another matter entirely, and to be consistent with the premise here, we have to define “nudist” as someone who participates in social nudity. The major nudist organizations will agree, since it’s in their best interests to have people showing up at organized activities. But I don’t want to be in the position of telling someone who hasn’t had anything on all weekend that she’s not a “true” nudist. Then again, were I faced with someone meeting this description, one may legitimately wonder if I could say anything at all, coherent or otherwise.

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Across the state from Anthony Weiner

It was just yesterday that I snapped up this quotation:

The lack of creativity and innovation in these accusations leads me to believe we’re definitely dealing with a GOP inside job. Liberals always get way better stuff, like that time you were trolling Chuck E. Cheese in a tiger costume holding a bottle of Maker’s Mark.

Then again, once in a blue moon — and in this case, in a blue stateRepublicans find something with marginal entertainment value:

A Monroe County [New York] legislator running for re-election on Tuesday has admitted that he posted naked photos of himself on a personal website.

C. Stephen Eckel removed two of the photos Friday after 13WHAM’s Sean Carroll questioned Eckel about the photographs. Eckel confirmed he took the photos, which he describes as artistic.

Well, yeah, he would. Then again, he has served as adjunct professor of photography at a local community college, and God knows they don’t pay adjuncts enough to hire models.

Eckel’s official statement:

“Today, we have seen Monroe County Republicans stoop to a new low in order to distract the public from the real issues facing county taxpayers — the crushing property tax burden, need for jobs and the culture of corruption that has plagued county government. My opponent has run a negative smear campaign that has distorted the facts.”

First question: are there positive smear campaigns?

I didn’t see any references to it, or to much of anything, on his opponent’s Web site, which is bland to the max, though said opponent does contribute the expected sound bite to the story.

However, Eckel’s claim (in the video) that he didn’t realize these shots were so easily Googleable makes him look like a hopeless naïf. Were I running GOP campaigns in the Rochester area, that’s the angle I’d be hitting.

(Via this nudiarist tweet.)

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