What’s Up With Nudists?

In one Colorado neighborhood, people aren’t loving thy neighbor. This community is hating on the Pierces—a nudist couple who have no qualms about gardening in the buff. After their neighbors started complaining about their nakedness in the yard, Mrs. Pierce began wearing a thong and pasties while tending her plants. But since her house has no fence and is across the street from a school, the landlord says that’s not enough and is threatening to evict them. The Pierces say this is discrimination. [AP via Yahoo News]

This got me thinking, what’s the deal with nudists? Why are they so…nakey?

  • Nudistory. Scientists think human beings have been wearing clothes for at least 30,000 years. Regardless, we’ve been around for 200,000, so we spent most of our existence naked. Nudists view our birthday suits as our most natural, purest form. Wait, are scientists trying to tell us that cavemen didn’t have loin clothes like every modern movie would have us believe? What a waste of woolly mammoth fur. [EZineArticles]
  • Cha-ching. In the ’90s, the nude recreation industry in the US and Canada grew 75 percent. In the US, it’s a $400 million a year business. In the French Riviera, there’s a completely nude town. I don’t know if French women are ever really naked. Armpit hair is kinda like a tank top. [EscapeArtist]
  • Family Fun. Nudist clubs encourage family activities and believe that children seeing naked bodies gives them a healthier sense of self esteem. According to one pro-nudist site, nude communities have a low incidence of sex offenders because they prosecute people getting to close to kidlets, while some other organizations (cough, cough) sweep cases under the rug because they’re bad for PR. [TakeOffWithUs]
  • Women Rule. Most nudist resorts allow any single, unaccompanied women in, but there are often stringent criteria for single men, like being a member of the American Association for Nude Recreation. Damn, it feels good to be a woman? [About.com]
  • Emperor’s New Clothes. Clothing Optional resorts give newbies time to “ease” into the lifestyle, while Clothes Free resorts require full nudity. Generally, the theory is, “Nude when possible, clothed when practical,” so garb might be worn for meals or when the weather sucks. Almost all clubs require that patrons carry a towel to sit on for hygienic reasons. [Bareworks]
  • Naked Ambitions. People equate nudity with sex, but apparently the shock factor goes away within minutes when you’re surrounded by nekkid people. As one guidebook put it, “One nude posed upon a divan is erotic. A hundred nudes waiting in line for potato salad are not.” [Bareworks]
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