So there I was at a coastal resort, stealing the soap and shampoo, standing naked in my ocean front picture window, waving at the breakers and watching them wave back, and basically being disguised as a normal person. It almost worked, too.
I can drive 100 miles from home, wear baggy sweats and no make-up, and still have someone recognize me. But this time it was someone from my far-flung, distant past. Fourteen years in the past, to be exact. I guess that portrait in my attic is doing its work.
We chatted politely for a brief time; I desperately trying to remember anything about her and she remembering far more about me than I necessarily wanted me or my darling Kohlrabi to hear without extensive personal footnotes. She had recently left the small towns daily newspaper staff, siting basic issues of respect and communication as her primary complaints. Sounds familiar.
How many times have we heard people talk about adult industry employees in less than flattering terms? Even many of those who claim to care about the welfare of sex workers often speak of them as though they were slow-thinking special needs children. Not to their faces, of course... just behind their backs or to the "respectable" world. A world that seems to follow a "do what we say, not what we do" rhetoric. You know, the "Just Do It" where we cant see it crowd.
Respect and communication. How many marriages have ended because one or both parties felt they werent getting enough of one or the other... or both? How many parent-child relationships have deteriorated because these necessary interpersonal behaviors deteriorated? How many mainstream workers have scanned the classified ads looking for a company that would at least pretend to give a damn and have a long enough memory to say so? Yet, the way some folks tell it, the only time anyone ever gets treated disrespectfully or talked down to is when theyre naked and money is being exchanged. Short term memory is the first thing to go, ya know.
Now, I know that most of you folks out there are civilized human beings... or pretty darn close. And I know youd never talk to a womans genitals, forgetting theres anything above the waist. I know you always tip when you sit up close and you always, always treat your friends, loved ones, co-workers, and all strangers and furry animals with tender loving care. Especially during this time of the year. But, darn it, there are some folks who just dont get it... and for some reason there are laws against clubbing them. Heck, ya cant even feed them to the lions anymore because theyre on special diets.
Rumor has it that some sort of end-of-year celebrations tend to be held about this time of season and that some people even develop these things called "resolutions." Quaint tradition and Im in an old-fashioned mood, so lets play along, shall we?
Since we cant really do much about the hypocritical goodie-two-shoes of the world or the Thuds in the audience well just have to focus on ourselves. Lets try extra hard this season (and heck, why stop there?) and remember that everyone, naked lady, coastal reporter, grocery clerk, athletic shoe gluer, and gosh darn it, even adult magazine columnists, need respect and a little conversation with meaning.
Tip your favorite entertainer all right, and look them square in the eyes when you do it. Then give them a friendly smile and remember... it takes an admirable amount of guts to stand in front of a crowd of well-adjusted folks like us and its important to let them know how much we respect that sort of bravery.
And most of all, respect yourself. Be safe this holiday and join me for another year of flesh, fun, and respectful freedom.