The American Association for Nude Recreation sent me an e-mail last week. It seems they are finding it difficult to recruit young members and need new ideas for promoting their creed. My reputation as a lateral-thinking ape obviously precedes me. They were presumptuous, however, in supposing that we gorillas approve of humans prancing about in the nude. Those with a good natural covering of fur don’t need clothes, but bare skin in the open air attracts buzzing insects and makes the snakes hiss.
I’m not surprised that the nudists are pining for fresh meat. It must be disheartening to see the bodies around you getting wobblier by the year, a mirror to your own sagging flesh. But if they want to attract spring chickens to the farmyard, they’ve got to sort out their charging structure. A flat fee per nipple is clearly nonsense. Young humans may not be financially astute, but even they must realise that they shouldn’t have to pay for having their goodies ogled by a bunch of ageing hippies.
I wrote back with several recommendations. Start by offering free vacations to firm-bodied newcomers. Don’t advertise or you’ll be deluged with applications from crusty-balled exhibitionists. Hire a team of people to scour the modelling agencies for talent. What should they look for? Top-notch booty. Cherchez le derrière is the motto for the nudie recruiter. Unlike the female bosom, the buttocks are of equal interest to both sexes and can be stared at while the owner is looking the other way. And if the hindquarters are first-rate, the other bits and pieces will usually be up to scratch as well. Pay the butt-hunters a fair commission for every quality rump they deliver and offer appearance money to the peachiest bums on show.
Then there’s the problem of young men having erections, an unwelcome distraction in a nudist colony. An exposed stiffy makes the maidens blush. The experienced ladies will wonder who caused it and get into competitive arguments, while the men will make vulgar jokes about playing a game of hoopla. Young male recruits must learn to suppress all thoughts of sex with mental images of Sunday School, hard-boiled eggs and Fanny Cradock. But there’s no harm in allowing the breeze in their groins to induce a moderate tumescence. A middle path between the broom handle and the dead mealworm is what’s required.
Lastly, the recreational activities need to be more appealing. Volleyball and tennis are negative clichés – for all their foolish bravado, humans don’t really want balls hurtling at them when they’re naked. Solo sports are surely more appropriate. I should imagine that women would find horse-riding quite stimulating. It might take them back to their teenage years, when they used to dream of galloping stallions. As for the men, swimming in heated pools containing life-sized mermaid dolls might be the thing to get their juices flowing. Real mermaids would be better, of course, but there are limits to what can be achieved on a fixed budget.
My final point was a gloomy one. Nudism is a declining pastime because its premise is flawed. Humans cannot go back to the pre-serpentine condition of Adam and Eve. Clothes, imagining what’s beneath them, and taking them off, are too important a part of how modern humans get sexually aroused. To cast them aside is to blunt one of the sharpest arrows in the sexual armoury. When a man meets a woman in alluring dress, he sees a soft-centred chocolate in a bright foil wrapper. Removing the wrapper and biting through the coating is an essential part of the whole experience. It also gives him the gumption to carry on chewing if he’s got the one with the nut in the middle.
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