Monday, January 7, 2008

I Know I'm A Grown Woman

But there are just some things my mama never warned me about and I'm still not quite prepared for.

Today I encountered one of these things. Er, rather, people.

The Locker Room Nude Talker.

I met her today. Maybe there's more. Maybe there's a colony.

I have always been insanely modest. Modest is a nice way of saying I have never wanted anyone to see what I cover with clothes. When I was 8 years old I earned a reward to spend the night at my 3rd grade teacher's house. It was my one and only childhood overnight. There were about 6 other girls who also won. When it was time to get into our pajamas, I remember just being shocked when all these little girls, all these nice, normal girls I spent my days with, just started flinging off their clothes left and right. None of them cared who saw their skivvies. I on the other hand, crouched down in a little space by the bed and bedstand and worked myself up into a frenzy and a sweat trying maneuver my arms, legs, body, and pajamas in a space and a manner just isn't really human possible, except for by Houdini.
And maybe Michael Scott.

It could be because I have six brothers. But I think some people are just born like that. Avee seems to be set on the entire free world seeing what she was born with, all before noon. And although Bo constantly has his little crack showing, when he's aware he is very modest.

High school locker rooms--nightmare. Same in college. I either stalled or got dressed balancing myself over disgusting toilets. That was always more appealing. Sometimes I would just do mind over matter, or mind over white granny panties, and just get dressed like everyone else after swim class. It was never easy.

Now, I go to the Y. I get dressed in the shower. If you ever pass by the showers, you can see me hiding behind the curtain, never more than a stark white arm streaking out to grab my next article of clothing. That's as risque as it gets with me.

So, today after Bootcamp (uh yes Kim, I'm going, where ARE YOU!?) I thought I'd hit the sauna for a brief sweat. I went into the locker room, plunked my exhausted hind end down on a bench and proceeded with the difficult task of removing my tennis shoes and socks.

Enter Nude Talker. She looked innocent enough in her gym clothes. So when she struck up conversation with me, I innocently and willingly responded. Bootcamp this, Bootcamp that--she tried it, it's too hard on her most days. Yoga, weight lifting, swimming, etc. It was all good. I was continuing with concerted effort on my laces, and she was quickly stripping down. I did my normal, "Boy my shoes are sure fascinating, I've never really studied the stitching on them, wait, what's that a purple thread going around the "N" of my New Balance shoes..." that I do every time someone within proximity has removed that which keeps us from ever having to use our imaginations.

I figured I could pull off the astute studying of my shoes and leg hairs for the minute or two it would take her to put on her suit. Or do whatever it is she was stripping down for.

The problem: Every time she spoke, after she was nekkid, she stopped dressing. She'd just stand there talking, in all her glory. At first I thought it was accidental. And then it started to look an awful lot like she really liked being nekkid. I kept looking down, but a normal person can only do that so much in a conversation. And I'm nothing if I'm not normal. Then when I realized the pattern of stalled dressing in relation to her talking, I started talking nonstop. I'm not really a nonstop kind of talker, I'm more of a "you know what I mean" "what do you think" kind of talker, with strangers at least. So it wasn't easy. THEN she stopped trying to cover herself to show me how intently she was listening to my nonstop talking. It was all going so wrong, so fast.

Finally I found an ever so slight pause in the "conversation" and I quickly made my exit.

My mom was a good mom. She really prepared me for a lot in life. But, she really dropped the ball with this one. You can be sure, I will warn my children of these types. I can't send them out into the world, or into locker rooms, unawares. And I guess I should cover this topic just to make sure none of them ever become the nude talker.

You know, more power to those who are that comfortable in their own skin. In nothing more than their skin... but really, they need to have compassion on the Me's of the world. The woman who never outgrew being a modest-chicken 7 year old at a slumber party.


Rebecca said...

I hear you.. I cover with a towel.. no room in our Y showers.. and dress in layers.. some of those older ladies don't give.. well a y goers batooty... what they look like, they just start taking it off right in mid conversation. I look at the clock and babble on about kids, shower, time to go.. etc.. those nude talkers.. not to mention the time... do you talk more naked... not me!

omar said...

One of the first posts ever on my site was about some locker room rules I'd like to impose. One of which was just this. I have no problem with changing clothes, or even being (briefly) naked in a locker room. That's what they're for. But naked socialization in locker rooms is so unnecessary. When I'm naked in a locker room, priority #1 is to get dressed.

And if another dude is naked, that's fine. But if he's talking to me without making an effort to get dressed, it's like he's saying, "hey, look at me naked." And it makes me wonder - why? Why do [you] want me to do this? If you want people to look at you when you're naked, go streaking at local sporting events. Otherwise, put some shorts on - THEN ask me if I saw the game last night.

omar said...

That's the longest comment I've left anywhere in months. I'm exhausted.

No Cool Story said...

That's the longest comment Omar has ever left.

Nekkid talkers: Not good yo!
But then the talkie strip-tease your fellow bootcamper was doing...oh boy.

Once in Las Vegas, Fashionista (who was like 10 then) and I went into the dressing room of this one store (one of those trendy places that I dislike). The dressing room was communal as in NO individual rooms with the door or at least a little curtain, just mirrors on all the walls in this huge room.
People were just taking their clothes off to try the clothing....some of them were going comando yo!!

We ran as fast as we could and not betray our very cool exterior.

Millie said...

*channeling my husband*

Was she hot?


I'm one of those too, and I agree, I think you're born that way. I avoid locker rooms for that very reason.

Camille said...

Heh, my mama didn't prepare me for that either, but I got my taste of the naked talker in middle school. While everyone else was trying desperately to take off their swimsuit under a towel after gym class, one girl would just take it all off, sprawl out across a bench, and start talking.

I used to be painfully modest too, but, for better or worse, having kids has completely cured me of that. Now I just cover up to avoid making other people uncomfortable.

Epsi said...

So uh, did you ever tract out a naked man on your mission? I bet you'd have liked that.
When I was in France, I was gloating to my very last (greenie) companion about how everyone told me that sisters always get a naked guy answering the door at some time in the mish. I hadn't and was pretty proud of it. Within the week we got one. My greenie wanted to turn tail and run, but the guy seemed genuinely interested, so I not only gave him a Book of Mormon, but set up a return appointment (for the Elders of course) to tell him more...

Analiese said...

Ah, so funny! Brought all sorts of memories back - please say you remember the MTC, lots of lotion, legs and no towel - please say you remember! i am laughing right now and I wasn't even there!
I had a naked guy on my mission though. he he he he

S said...

I.don' But maybe I would rather be in Omars locker room???????????

Julie said...

Give me a blanket and cover me.

My mom tells me that when I was just tiny my Grandma came to visit. She offered to give me a bath. I wouldn't let her because I didn't want her to see me without clothes on. I've been that way ever since.

Julie said...

So, have you ever read this post? Yours reminded me of it.

Barnecked Lady said...

LOL, so freaking funny.

EarthBint said...

Once our power was out for a couple of days so we all went to the gym to take a shower... We entered the locker room - 3 innocent girls and there were 2 of them talking to eachother! Once they saw us, they sort of covered up. But why? Why?

Michelle Garff said...

I had a lady standing next to me in joanne fabrics breastfeeding her 2 yr old who was sitting in the cart. then she turned to look at me and the enormous nipple was just staring at me. i didn't know what to do but run. she walked around the entire store that way, with her whole large breast hanging out, no shame.

Sketchy said...

Wow, I think I'm going to write my gym a thank you note for the changing area adjacent to each private shower.

So, just how are you planning to prepare your children for the naked talkers of the world?

Nate said...

This must be a totally feminine thing. As a boy, I don't think it ever was such an issue. Except for the NEVER-NUDES. They seemed to have a really hard time with it (if you don't understand that comment, please watch every episode of Arrested Development).

The Finns proudly display themselves to strangers in the sauna daily.

In my profession, I see naked people every day, and at some point every part of the anatomy becomes pretty much like the elbow. My aunt once summed it up best, "we've seen it all before, and if we haven't we won't know what it is."