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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Are you forgetting something? Perhaps pants?

I'd like to take a moment to ponder the reason why old people walk around gym locker rooms naked.  (You SO know what I'm talking about.)

Today when I got done working out, I walked into the locker room when to my horror, a woman was standing in front of the mirror, blow-drying her hair, naked.  I panicked..I didn't know where to look.  Now don't get me wrong, sometimes I sweat my arse off when I'm blow drying my hair, but it never compels to me blow dry naked, not even in my own apartment.  Strange.  She had a nice body for a 65 year-old, but still, it's weird.

Tonight I asked Mike if men ever walk around his gym naked.  He laughed, and said no, not too many people run on the treadmill in their birthdays suits.  When I clarified "locker room," he said, "The amount of nakedness in the locker is in direct correlation with a person's age."

I exclaimed, "Right??  Why do old people suddenly not care who sees them naked??"  I would think if I was ever going to flaunt my goods, it would have been at 22 during my workout-like-crazy Miss Wyoming phase, not at 65 after a few kids and c-section scars.

This brought me back to one of my earliest childhood memories.  I used to go to the gym with my mom so she could play racquetball.  She'd play in her 80's short-shorts, and I'd watch while playing with my barbies and eating animal crackers.  After her games, I went with her into the locker room.  On one particular occasion, I'd say circa 1983, I saw an older woman walking around naked.  I couldn't stop staring, because a) it was the first naked woman I'd seen besides my mom and b) I couldn't believe how everything had ventured "south," more towards the belly button region.  It was?  Disturbing.

I guess as we get older we simply don't care.  Either that, or we start forgetting the small details, such as putting on pants.

1 comment:

  1. I guess I'm a bit older than you? I'm 35 years old. Being younger than myself you probably weren't required to shower after gym classes in junior high and high school, I'm guessing?

    When I was in junior high and high school we were required to shower after each and every gym class. The showers in the girls locker rooms were group showers where everyone is 100% out in the open with every last part of you on display to everyone else.

    That was 5 nude group showers a week for 6 years straight.

    My reason for mentioning this is that as a result of all of those group showers with other girls I became completely comfortable with locker room nudity as a teen. So, to be honest, I don't have any problems with other females seeing me nude when I'm in the locker room at my gym, nor am I at all bothered by seeing other women nude.

    I'm actually glad that we were required to shower back then, because it got rid of any awkwardness about locker room nudity a long time ago. The gym that I go to now has shower stalls with curtains. I would say that probably 50% of the women at my gym are ultra conservative, they wrap a towel around themselves as soon as they get undressed, and don't remove the towel until after their in the shower with the curtain closed.

    I would say that the other 50% are like myself. We just undress and just walk nude over to the shower stall without covering up. The problem that the shy women have is that there's nowhere for them to hang their towel while their in the shower, except over the curtain rod. Unfortunately for them, their towels almost always get wet or even all out soaked by the shower, and sometimes the towel falls off, either into the shower or on the dirty floor outside the shower.

    It's just a lot easier to not even bother with the towel. I'm good friends with the woman that manages the gym, and she lets me take my 14 year old niece with me to go swimming whenever I want, even though my niece doesn't have a membership. The first couple of times that I took my niece swimming there, she did the shy "towel dance" where she covered up as soon as the swimsuit came off and didn't take it off until she was in the shower with the curtain closed. By the third time I took her swimming she said to me "What the heck, aunt Melissa, I don't have anything that the rest of you in here don't have," and she just walked nude over to the shower. I was proud of her that she handled things so adult-like, and that she's learning to be comfortable in her own skin. I hate to see women or girls of any age feel ashamed of their body!

    Anyway, I think that if you've grown up showering in gym class that you probably are more comfortable with it as an adult too. So that might be why you see a lot of older women that are comfortable in the nude at your gym?

    I hope you don't take this the wrong way! But I would have thought that being in pageants that you would have had a lot of occasions where you would have been undressed around many other women in the dressing rooms, and that you'd be used to it? I've always heard that the ladies in pageants usually have women that help them get dressed quickly between rounds at the pageants, and maybe even help them tape their breasts to lift them up higher. I don't mean to be personal, though.