Another opportunity to visit the nudist park has passed without me being able to seize the day and do what I really wanted to do this weekend. It was, however, a different set of reasons than last time. Last time I was determined to go on a Saturday when more nudists would actually be present. I got sick and it rained that Saturday. So I set my sights on Labor Day weekend.
This weekend the hurricane that ravaged Houston changed my plans. You see, the storm also ravaged Port Arthur and the distribution points that local gas stations rely on for new shipments on a weekly basis. I did not see the gas shortage coming in time. The lines at gas stations and two hour waits for gas mostly all happened before I was ready to cope with it. So I was not prepared to make the trip when the time came. Gas stations are limited to selling chewing gum and promising that more gas would be available by the middle of next week.
So I am left to sit here in my bedroom studio in the nude writing this and listening to Dvorák’s Scherzo Capriccioso on YouTube.
A scherzo is, perhaps, the perfect metaphor for an essay like this one. Most of what I write are really scherziplay (or scherzi if I hadn’t goofed on that typo in the definition) if you analyze them closely. Sprightly and humorous idea flows (at least, they make me laugh) that wax thoughtful and slightly serious at certain points. This one, the capriccioso, the capricious and mercurial idea that I have somehow turned into a nudist, is my attempt to make sense of the nonsensical, the whims and flimsy that led me to be a naked old man.
You may have noticed in my artwork a tendency to associate nudity with childlike innocence. (At least, you should have noticed if I have any ability at all as a writer and artist to guide your perceptions.) There is no sense at the nudist park that it is about sexuality and impending orgies. Those things are completely against the rules and have no place among actual nudists. You go to a nudist park and it is just you and your towel for sitting on talking to a bunch of naked people who just as fat and old and saggy and baggy as you are, each with their own towels for sitting on. Nobody uses more than their first names, and more than that is not necessary. Nudists are more open and honest than most people you meet in social situations. They literally are not hiding anything. And I have discovered that I fit right in there. It seems like the most natural thing in the world.
Once I got past the initial embarrassment that anyone would feel in that new-nudist situation, I came to the conclusion that I have always been a nudist. Having been born a nudist, my parents and grandparents trained me not to be one, and being sexually assaulted at ten gave added horror to being naked around others that it took a lifetime to overcome. But naked is how we were created. There is a reason that Adam and Eve didn’t wear clothes in Eden.
I didn’t get to go back to the nudist park this holiday weekend. I will never convince my wife and kids to go with me either. In fact, I myself may never have another opportunity to go back there. But listening to Dvorak’s Scherzo has confirmed in me that I am a nudist and always have been. Sorry if I have frightened you with my naked ideas, but maybe you should listen to a scherzo naked and test whether you are one too.