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21 January 2011

The Friday Night Question (or, the Saturday Morning Question, since I'm so late), chosen at random from The Book of Questions:[More:]

#132 If you went to a beach and it turned out to be a nude beach, would you stay and go swimming? Would you swim nude?
And as for me: of course! One reason I love the Florida Keys is because you can swim naked in the ocean.
posted by BoringPostcards 21 January | 23:41
Oh, hell yeah!
posted by Ardiril 21 January | 23:45
Why not?
posted by Eideteker 21 January | 23:55
I grew up a mile from the beach, and I've gone skinny dipping in pools.

I have some major hesitations about removing the scant cloth protection from my delicate bits on a sandy beach, and then swimming in an ocean full of wild oceanic critters without that scant cloth protection over my poor delicate bits. I've been on beaches and in oceans enough to know that salty sand gets into crevices and doesn't come out, and that there are THINGS in the water.

Cloth isn't much protection. But I'll keep it, thanks.
posted by galadriel 22 January | 00:00
Depends who I was with.
posted by amro 22 January | 00:03
I don't think I'd strip nude on a beach, but it's mostly for the reasons galadriel cites, not just from modesty. (In a hot tub, for example, I'd be very tempted to strip down, though I'd be a little shy.)

I have enough trouble keeping my face and arms from getting sunburned at the beach when I'm slathered in sunscreen and covered up whenever I'm not in the water. I shudder to think what might happen to my tenderest bits, which have been shielded from the sun for most of 40 years.

I might swim nude and throw on clothes after I get out. Actually, that sounds ideal: my least favorite part of the beach is the part where I lounge or romp around in a clammy swimsuit.
posted by Elsa 22 January | 00:30
I went topless in Greece as a teenager. I thought I was super cool until I saw the sunburn the next day. Holy crap it hurt. So given unlimited sunscreen, the naked part sounds nice. Although I hadn't thought about that whole sea critters thing. Yikes.
posted by supercapitalist 22 January | 00:55
I am a pasty white creature who burns easily. That said, I've been skinny dipping before (well, wet tshirt and nothing underneath basically counts) and with enough sunscreen at hand in a lovely warm climate I'd do it again.
posted by lriG.rorriM 22 January | 01:17
Of course I would.
posted by arse_hat 22 January | 02:06

Girls: Well, it depends. Let's examine this.

And there you go.
posted by mudpuppie 22 January | 02:22
Have done, would do again.

Possible exception: if the beach is entirely populated by young, attractive people who would notice that I've reached the age when your broad mind and narrow waist start to change places...
posted by TheophileEscargot 22 January | 02:52
I can only spend a half hour on any sandy and warm beach before my sun allergy forms a nice sun rash all over my body. And that's with SPF 75, some clothes, and a sun hat. I have been known to push my time in the sun to the point of needing to get a Benadryl shot. Avoiding the beach and sun is not fun, but a trip to Urgent Care while on vacation is even less fun.

However, were this a better world without sun allergies, there is no way in hell I would hang around a nude beach, let alone strip and go swimming. No no no.
posted by rhapsodie 22 January | 03:03
I'm another one who wears long sleeves to the beach for skin protection so no skinny dipping for me!
posted by gomichild 22 January | 03:45
No, no and no. It wouldn't be a pleasant experience for anyone involved.
posted by deborah 22 January | 03:48
No, much as I'd like to (and I would love to), I burn at the merest hint of sun, and it's always worse by the sea - maybe the salt in the air increases the burn factor or something, I don't know. But I'm one of those who has to stay covered up on the beach.

Also, I'd be concerned about Greenpeace showing up and trying to haul me back into the sea to reunite me with the rest of my pod.
posted by Senyar 22 January | 04:59
Not completely nude. I'd go topless, and if I were with a friend, have that friend completely slather me in sunscreen.
posted by TrishaLynn 22 January | 07:19
Nope, it wouldn't be fair to other people's eyes.
posted by apoch 22 January | 08:10
Not a chance.
posted by octothorpe 22 January | 09:35
I have before, but I'm not as comfortable in my body at the moment, so I'm not sure.
posted by Stewriffic 22 January | 09:37
Sure, done it before, would do it again without a thought.
posted by mygothlaundry 22 January | 10:19
Probably. I've been to a couple nude beaches in my time, and certainly lots of skinny-dipping situations at camp and traveling in my 20s. It's a nice feeling, totally bathing in the sun (and water of course) with no interference.

However, the company matters. Some nude beaches are very chill and people mind their own business, but some have a very high ick factor. At one I went to only once near where I grew up, pervs (usually in shorts) wander around eyeballing people, which is just nasty and intrusive. And I also don't have much need or desire to see other people's junk. I think my ideal nude swimming situation is where you are with people you know and trust very well, and there is no one else within a mile around.

And all that said, I'm getting old for social nude swimming. Why go there? It's not like I'm on the prowl sexually, and that's a big part of why young people do this - frisson. So maybe the ideal situation is that I'm the ONLY one around.
posted by Miko 22 January | 10:22
To confirm mudpuppie's analysis: yes, why not? Any nude beach I ran into would be at least half a continent away from home, so it's not like I'd have to worry about running into anyone I knew.
posted by fogovonslack 22 January | 10:45
LOL, when I opened this thread today, the first thing I saw was "I'm on the prowl sexually", posted by Miko. I was like, whoa. Then I scrolled up :-P

I might go topless, if I had enough sunscreen!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 22 January | 11:29
Nope. I cover up at the beach, too. Maybe if there were a lot of shade. I know too many ppl with skin cancers.
posted by gaspode 22 January | 12:03
I can only spend a half hour on any sandy and warm beach before my sun allergy forms a nice sun rash all over my body.

I have maybe 30 min more than rhapsodie in this regard but if it were a no-sunburning sort of day, totally. I like swimming in the altogether. We had a co-ed sauna in college that was clothing optional and me and a bunch of mixed-gender friends had a standing evening hangout time there. I feel like a nude beach situation just means you can wear what you want, up to and including nothing, it doesn't mean you have to be nekkid. I'd enjoy that.
posted by jessamyn 22 January | 12:18
Sure. Mainly topless, but I've done the complete birthday suit thing, too. Jon and I have sought out nude beaches in Miami and Jersey. When everyone else is in the buff, it's not a big deal (and I'm very, very shy). I've seen families with kids frollicking in the sand and water sans bathing suits, and nobody blinks an eye (kids seemed more common in Miami than Jersey -- more European influence maybe). Beach umbrellas help with the sun issue nicely. And don't worry about body type; if you haven't been, I can assure you, you see ALL types and ages at nude beaches. 300+ pound ladies, in fact, can look surprisingly good all nude and tan.

Come to think of it, now that I've got the car again, I think we'll head out to the Jersey beach again this summer. I have a cute two piece (not bikini) swimsuit and I could just wear the little black skirt part and remove the halter top. Comfy. I can always pull my breasts behind me in a wagon. ; )
posted by Pips 22 January | 12:24
Funny, pips, I'm pretty sure that Jersey beach you have mentioned is the same one I went to that had a high creep quotient. Maybe it was timing, and also my visits were now about 15 years ago.
posted by Miko 22 January | 13:23
Timely question for me.

I've enjoyed late night pool breaking in my 20's where mostly male companions skinny dipped, and I only kept my undies on for fear of running from the law naked. I mean, think about it. Dudes get away, and I get apprehended. Naked. But that never happened, and those were joyous, not overtly sexual times.

Anyway, I've lately been feeling very self-conscious about my getting older and slacker body, and my lack of control despite best efforts over my appearance. I felt sexy for years and years, and now, it's like, I've had a good run of that, so long. Which sucks, and is not mentally a good place to be, and I recognize that this is more about my mind than my body.

So. Right now? No. But I wish I could say yes.

posted by rainbaby 22 January | 13:53
I have never had any interest in being naked out of doors. Nor indoors really, except for the purposes of bathing or teh sex.
posted by JanetLand 22 January | 15:00
I mean, as far as the sunburning thing goes, yeah, my ancestors evolved in peat bogs far from the burning rays of the great eye in the sky also and I therefore have two possible skin colors: very very white and very very red. But there's really no difference in a bathing suit or the altogether as far as that goes. I'm not sitting around in the sun in either one without gallons of sunscreen and actually, I'm not going to this hypothetical nude beach or any other beach between 11 and 3. ;-) I'm not particularly body conscious. I think I look better nude than I do in a bathing suit anyway. I'm old, I could stand to lose 20 pounds or so, whatever, scream in horror if you must and cover your eyes, I like swimming naked.
posted by mygothlaundry 22 January | 15:05
Funny, pips, I'm pretty sure that Jersey beach you have mentioned is the same one I went to that had a high creep quotient. Maybe it was timing, and also my visits were now about 15 years ago.

Yeah, Miko, if you mean the guy with the Brazilian and cock ring, there's a mild creep factor, but harmless.
posted by Pips 22 January | 16:37
No, I remember more like an old guy in cargo shorts and sunglasses walking verrrry sloooowly past the blankets.
posted by Miko 22 January | 18:09
What you really have to watch out for are those telephoto lenses. ; )
posted by Pips 22 January | 19:07
Been there, done that. Would again. (Bates Beach, south of Santa Barbara, segued from a bunch of naked pot-smoking hippies into a prime cruising area. I was decidedly one of the former.)
posted by danf 22 January | 21:18
MGL, you can be an honorary guy for this thread.
posted by danf 22 January | 21:21
Depending on the company, of course. No way I would do this with my Mother or sisters around, for example but apart from that, yeah, sure. I'm one of those lucky olive-skinned people and have just come back from two weeks on the beach well-tanned despite liberal applications of SPF30+ several times a day. Might be nice to get rid of those tan lines anyway ...
posted by dg 23 January | 01:16
My Boy Jack || Say I was going to cook dinner for a date...