What’s a baby-boomer to do?
As a teen, just being out after curfew was prohibitive, but we did it. I’m just flashing back here, as I write, remembering walking late at night down the middle of Mingus Road in Michigan with my girlfriend and dropping my shorts, all that I wore. It was rock star lack of underwear. If it was cool for Mick, then cool for me. The experience felt outrageous and the next step in my evening’s liberation.
It was freeing to do something “crazy.” Jumping out of constrictions, out of conventional uniform, was an increment of “crazy.” That was a part of hippie garb back when. It was different and naked was just one more bold step.
I had a friend from Wisconsin that wore a “Who” style jumpsuit, always. If anyone of us said anything, any hint, he would seize the moment and that long zipper and jump right out of it. He’d do it just for the excitement, the “crazy,” proudly the “freak.” To freak in an “uptight” conventional world, to be free of social convention, not to be robots of commercial fashion, to experiment, was cool.
It wasn’t rebellious, or anti-social, or doing the opposite. That is the “anti.” It was instead liberation that we felt, a rejection of repression, throwing off the shackles, the expectations, the mindless conformity, the blind patriotism and as we saw it, the boring channeled road of life that was being thrust upon youthful expression and true freedom. The establishment was in the way of change. So, we freaked out.
It was an expression of individualism, thumbing a nose at the idea of anti-social. Instead, we just turned our backs on it and did what we felt good doing. We did this often, either in dress, or sometimes the ultimate non-fashion, just naked.
Quite a lot, it seems, can be wrapped around the act of dropping trousers in the street in a most spirited manner.
Now then, let’s take a look at the other end of life. “Hope I die before I get OLD.” A few extra years past the considered ripe old age of thirty.
Conventionally, or traditionally when one gets to the other side of a responsible life, embracing convention and teaching one’s offspring the same strategy, one sits doing little, believing that one can’t but do much more and then dies. Ideally, we are to be surrounded by grandchildren and teaching wisdom to the people who actually know best, the un-indoctrinated spontaneous babes.
My favorite India guru once, or twice said, “Life is a process of unlearning.” He would include all convention that we are taught at an early age, questioning authority, the stuff children are molded to. He would claim that that opens the doors to infinite possibilities in consciousness and experience. If you think about it, these also are the reasons people feel a need to blow off steam.
Rather than doing what I’m supposed to do, which is a doomed attitude, I think that getting in touch with what those nudists of old were doing, will keep me my youth. It is a time to unlearn the last vestiges of the foundation that I was taught as a babe, that is, up to the age of 6 and then built upon. After-all of this life of unlearning that I have been doing, I think this is a time to amp the process up and get it done properly.
The early nudists were weekend refugees from smutty, grey, long hour, factory towns of the industrial age. They would go to the country and practice things that were good for them, sunshine, good veggies, nature, meditating in the moment, exercise regimens, dance, and comradery and certainly while being naked.
Personally, rather than getting older and used up, I’d rather get younger. It is a better life to have escaped into the woods, cavorting as an old school nudist. The contrary, sitting watching culture go past me on TV and its news, wrapped up, believing that I’m a part of that, sometimes feels kind of sketchy. Taking that as a guideline, I’ll adjust my individual lifestyle, stripping off a few obstacles and shackles and take a walk naked. You know man, “Make it real.”
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