Gentlemen of New York: If you happen upon a group of a dozen topless women sunning and reading and quietly enjoying themselves in Central Park, here is what you do. You walk on by. Maybe you take an appreciative glance as you pass, if you’re so inclined. Maybe you sit down in your own quiet spot and enjoy your own book and bit of sunshine. Maybe you send a thumbs-up or a wave or a smile from a comfortable distance. To the many, many men who did just that, we give our thanks. You are mature adults.
Here’s what you don’t do: Skulk slowly up to the group and stare hungrily as you pass, well within the personal-space boundary. Stand behind a nearby tree or rock and peep out as if we can’t see you. (We can.) Gather one by one around us like you’re reenacting a scene from “The Birds” or perhaps “The Walking Dead.” To the handful of men who did that, we say WTF? You don’t have the Internet at home? Or any self-respect? Normally we attract zero or maybe one like you during any given outing, but for some reason today we hit the motherlode and got ourselves a good half dozen.
It was a lovely afternoon in spite of this. Friends were made, stories told, cupcakes eaten, tanlines erased, books read. But gentlemen, please: if you like the existence of a group like ours (and presumably you do), don’t act in such a way as to make it go away. Common sense, gents.