IMG_9610Every Monday night during the summer, HBO shows a free classic movie outdoors on the big screen in Bryant Park. We decided to stop by last week, when they were showing On the Town, the Frank Sinatra/Gene Kelly/Leonard Bernstein musical from 1949. Okay, the movie’s a bit sexist. (What movie from 1949 isn’t?) But that music! And Gene Kelly! Plus it was one of our members’ birthday, or close enough to warrant a celebration.

So we picked up pastries and strawberries and some fizzy peach beverage in a fancy bottle and joined the sea of humanity waiting for the movie to begin.

IMG_9694We were the only ones topless in the crowd — but no one seemed to mind much that we were there, except for one angry lady who picked her way across the lawn from some distance away to tell us that “nudity should only be for the bedroom.” Fortunately, not only were we more than happy to ignore her but the very nice woman in front of us leaped to our defense, pointing out that we weren’t the ones sexualizing our bodies, she was, and that her remarks were more problematic than anything we were doing. It felt like a scene in a movie, to be honest. Like that bit in Spider-Man, maybe, where all the ordinary people stand up to help the embattled hero. Not that anyone else stood up to defend us — but certainly no one stood up to take the other woman’s side. And one dissenting voice in a crowd of well over a thousand people? Not bad. Not bad at all.

We’re thinking we might go again some other Monday night before the summer ends — would you like to join us? If you’re a body-positive woman in the New York area, send a note to toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com. We’ll save a seat for you on the lawn.

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