My Ugly Neighbor is Naked… Again

I was perusing through my old Facebook statuses in search of throwback fodder for this week’s bloggage when I stumbled upon this post from a few years ago.

“I feel like there’s something inherently wrong with our society’s narcissistic obsession with physical beauty when we can claim that someone is “not attractive enough to be naked”. What ever happened to just looking away? I’m not a fan of gazing at sagging buttcheeks or excessive body hair, but I can’t say I’d feel right about assuming the authority to tell people they can’t show their less-than-what-I’d-find-appealing bodies in my presence. Quite frankly, I give major kudos to everyone confident enough to bear to be bare, with or without social approval.”

With the aid of my superior forensic skills (just kidding), I remembered that the post had been my passive aggressive response aimed at an acquaintance who had whined via social media about one of her neighbors having the audacity to walk out on his apartment balcony buck naked. Apparently, she was offended not by his lack of clothing, but that he had the nerve to show his unappealing body in daylight.

Newsflash: He wasn’t there for her entertainment.

Since when is being naked solely about another person’s viewing pleasure? I resent this incident for the same reason I hate the phrase “bikini body” — the implication and arbitrary obligation that a person’s body is supposed to look a certain way, that they should put in effort to make it look that way, and the shame that the rest of us are supposed to impose on them for their failure to meet this standard.

In retrospect, I’m not surprised by the large number of people who flocked to my acquaintance’s profile page to commend her for her aesthetic bigotry. If you turn on a television in the company of enough people and wait, one of them will eventually start criticizing the images of someone’s body splayed on the screen.

I dream of a day when body shaming isn’t a sport. Until then, I aim to spend more time naked with awesome people who don’t care how any of us look. Yay nudism!

15 comments

  1. Yeah, I have a hard time with this… it’s one thing if the neighbor is standing in the window naked, lights on, basically crying for attention to their naked body. On the other hand, if they are just naked and carrying on normally, well, it’s kind of an invasion of privacy for you to be looking through their window to see them naked in the first place.

    I have to admit that I’m not particularly private about my nudity, a person could see me naked pretty much every day if they tried hard enough. I only close the blinds when I’m doing stuff with my wife… don’t really need an audience for that

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    1. You raise an interesting point. I question just how often people are naked as a cry for attention. I’m more inclined to think of those incidents as accidents, but I don’t think an innocent glance that just happens to fall upon a naked person would necessarily qualify as an invasion of privacy if the person is out in the open and you’re not putting out any substantial effort to view them. I can see how others may not agree, though. Nudity, in general, can be quite a controversial topic.

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      1. You’re right about the “glance”, I kind of mis-spoke. I think there’s a certain degree of appropriate curiosity, just this morning I looked at four naked bodies sharing the same open shower I was. The point I was trying to make was that, if you’re that concerned about a person’s “naked attractiveness”, then you should remember that you weren’t specifically invited to look at them through their windows in their house. At the same time, if you’re the naked person and are afraid of being seen naked, then you have no sympathy coming if you leave your blinds open 😉

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  2. Kudos for you kiddo. Judge not lest ye be judged. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If you can’t say something nice about someone, then the best thing to do is shut the fuck up. Life is a lot better when you appreciate rather than criticize.

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    1. Preach it! Beauty is absolutely in the eye of the beholder. Negativity doesn’t do the speaker any more favors than it does for the person receiving the unsolicited criticism.

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    1. Thank you, Christina! It just baffles me that so many grown-ups still don’t see any problem with telling other adults why their bodies are flawed. As if their opinion is important, much less actually matters? Not to mention the emotional damage such careless remarks can inflict…

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      1. Makes me wonder what these people would say to alllll those naked people they see in a gym shower room (men or women). The showers aren’t men and women together I know, but in the women’s shower would a younger woman walk up to an older woman that doesn’t have (that 25 year old body) anymore and the young girl says “excuse me mam ahhhhh, but could you like cover up or maybe wait til you got home to get naked and shower cuz I can’t handle looking at your saggy ass in here? I mean its a public place (just like a nude beach), with others in clear view of your naked body. Maybe the one having the problem looking at a saggy ass should just turn and go shower else where.

        Why should nudity be any different.

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