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Innocent bystander…

December 28, 2009

Going to an aquatic centre is a perfect opportunity for anthropological research…

People show up in this environment about as stripped down as you can get without going to Wreck Beach…

Wreck Beach triggers my Victorian sensibilities,

and apparently it isn’t about being nude anymore,

it is about watching nudity…

My neighbours,

who have been regulars at that scene for decades,

because that is where they found their people,

say that the creep factor is rising…

Pure nudists now cordon themselves off with rope and placards saying,

NO clothes past this point…

Running wild... looking pretty...

I witnessed some creep factor at the West Van pool last night…

Buzzards perving on twelve year old girls standing under the shower,

in their string bikinis…

And Mr. Speedo hiking up way too much information,

on his way up to the water slide…

I almost asked the lifeguard if he could blow his whistle three times,

and get a pair of surf shorts STAT on the pool deck…

But I decided to stay in my own department and just stick with my one request,

to change the music to something I could sing along with,

as the techno was making me nauseous…

I told him I’m too old for that level of bass…

Little Gem asked me,

as I was in hysterics over in the deep end,

Mama, what’s so funny???

When I explained the laughing matter,

which was really about me watching a woman watching Mr. Speedo,

in stitches,

just like You’re on Candid Camera,

She said,

He’s weird.

Starshine asked me,

What is that man doing prancing around like that???

I said,

I think he may be trying to meet someone…

She raised an eyebrow,

I don’t think that’s going to happen with what he’s wearing…

A few moments later he paired up over by the hot tub…

But I kept that to myself..

Some games are better left without a debrief…

In the sauna I was minding my own business,

and reviewing how,

due to personal growth and self-contained energy management,

I can now enjoy such intensity of both dry and steamy heat…

Sometimes I think I’m way out in left field…

Just me and my thoughts…

But then confirmation hits the ground,

or cedar planks,

in this case…

There was a striking young woman volleying herself in between the sauna,

the steam room,

and the edge of the shallow end…

It may have only been my perception but it appeared that she may have had some exterior work done on herself…

As she got up to leave and walked out,

one fellow remarked,

She is SO thin,

like she just got out of a P.O.W. camp…

All the cabin mates looked at me,

like I might be able to sew things up for them…

All I could stitch was my truth,

I feel sad…

I wondered what level of reflection would follow up over the hot rocks…

Hugh Hefner and his bunnies came up,

with some responsibility for opening up the sexual repression of the 50’s on the one hand,

and creating body stereotypes that continue morphing toward alien,

on the other…

I suggested that hopefully we’re swinging towards some balance,

and a wider spread of accepting differentiation…

Bringing more meaning to the words Fit for Life…

I mentioned something about Twiggy,

someone else mentioned Farrah…

The lad who made the initial comment said,

with eyes wide open,

Those are the It-girls of my parents’ generation,

you can’t be that old…

I said,

I’m old enough to have been under the influence of that kind of pressure,

and now that I’m in my forties I’m consciously dissolving it…

I have two girls now and I’m fierce about who and what they are exposed to…

I’m making sure that I unpack and investigate all of my baggage,

in the name of love for people I haven’t met yet…

When you’re working on a PhD.,

you are required to get an ethics review if and when your research involves human subjects…

Reviewing whether your methods may impact,

for better or for worse,

those who you seek to study…

I wonder how a committee might assess and evaluate the ethical effect of just sitting still…

And research which finds you,

rather than the other way around…

What kind of love is this???

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