Archives for category: fans

img_4025Two summers ago, we met a funny, smart, beautiful woman named Mara Altman, who said she was writing a book about women’s bodies in general and her body in particular. She wanted to see what our events were like in preparation for writing the chapter about breasts. We were delighted to have her join us.

img_3582Now, after a gestation period that would do an elephant proud, Mara has published that book: GROSS ANATOMY, subtitled “Dispatches From the Front (and Back).” And sure enough, it has a chapter about breasts, and the baring thereof in public, focused on a topless bicycle tour we did in downtown Manhattan. It is thoughtful, eye-opening, and laugh-out-loud funny, and we commend both it and the rest of the book to your attention.

img_3587“When I’d thought about participating,” Mara writes, “the possible pitfalls had seemed huge. What if I changed careers? Say someday I want to be a politician. I’m running on a ticket of universal health care and weekly pizza parties for all, but then, during opposition research, a picture of my bare tits bobbling above a bicycle is revealed. I am no longer fit to serve. Keeping fabric less than a millimeter thick between your body and the world somehow preserves your integrity and makes you honorable, respectable, and capable of deep thoughts. Taking that little swatch of material away makes you a hussy.”

img_3607But of course she goes ahead and joins us anyway. “We rode through Battery Park and stopped in view of the Statue of Liberty, where one of the girls — one of the ones who had breasts that I wouldn’t mind having (it was something about the perkiness, the lightheartedness of the pair, like they were tulips reaching for the light in the sky) — read Emma Lazarus’s sonnet ‘The New Colossus.’ ”

img_3683“We made a quick stop at the New York Stock Exchange, which was filled with men in suits, but what really stood out were the many tourists aiming their cameras at us. Our meaningful movement, to them, was merely a stunt to document on their Instagram feed.”

img_3701img_3694“I saw interest, shock, disdain, adoration, and curiosity on the faces that flashed past. Many, hordes in fact, turned their phones toward us and began recording. I got it; usually, viewing this kind of stuff costs money and endless viruses on one’s computer. I tried to be chill…But every time a camera pointed in our direction, one of the girls, the one who had grandiose breasts, large and pillowlike, the type I’d decided would be perfect to rest my face in for a quick respite from the world, would yell, ‘Fuck you, you have to ask!’…I didn’t share her sentiment. Going outside topless would be like going out with a pair of parrots chanting ‘I like big butts and I cannot lie’ while fornicating on your shoulder, and expecting witnesses not to snap a picture. It wasn’t realistic.”

IMG_4092She writes about the experience of shopping for a sandwich in a shop whose staff isn’t receptive; she writes about eating lunch in the park, with a break for kickball with some kids.

img_3827IMG_3955img_3891Finally when a brief rain shower breaks out, she has an epiphany: “As little droplets pinged pleasingly all over my body, I finally realized an interesting change — my breasts, in that moment , weren’t for anyone but me. I hadn’t really dwelled on it before, but since my beginning, my breasts have always been for someone else. When I was a teenager, I wanted my breasts to grow so I’d be attractive to boys. When my breasts turned out small, I felt it was my duty to warn boys before they went under my half-filled bra cups so they wouldn’t be disappointed by what they found. For doctors, my breasts were something that could potentially turn lethal. For the babies I may have one day, they would be a source of food…Being topless is always a stop on the way to somewhere else — to a shower, to a breast exam, to sex — but it is rarely the destination in and of itself. By exposing my breasts to everything and everyone in one of the largest cities in this nation, paradoxically I finally got a taste of what it was like to relish them for myself.”

IMG_4055We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Hell, we couldn’t have said it half as well.

Check out what else this eloquent topless bicyclist has to say  here — and let us be the first to say this: Mara Altman for President in 2020.

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IMG_2297So, we got this email.

It was from a fan of our group who lives in Ireland. She’d read about us online some years ago and had been excited ever since about what we do. “Coming from a country that’s FINALLY started controlling women’s bodies just a little bit less,” she wrote, “I can’t imagine anything happening like this in Ireland.” She was only going to be in New York for a few days, but did we have a meet-up planned that she could join?

IMG_2288Well, we didn’t — but the weather was looking cooperative, and we can’t say no to a fan who’s been waiting years to meet us, so we made a snap decision to see if one or two of us might be free on short notice to meet in Bryant Park, behind the main branch of the New York Public Library. And then…

We got this other email.

IMG_2397This one wasn’t from overseas, but it was still from pretty far away, in the heart of the great American midwest, from a woman who wrote, “I am a nudist (and English major, so I love books!) who is in town for a few days with my boyfriend, also a nudist. When I Googled nudist activities in New York you guys came up.” Did we have a meet-up planned on Wednesday that she could join…?

IMG_2355Well, yes. As it just so happens, we did, thanks to our new friend from Ireland.

IMG_2312And so, what had started out as a tiny, last-minute thing turned into a proper event with more than half a dozen of us lying out on the lawn, relaxing blissfully top-free in the mid-afternoon sun, celebrating freedom and international comity. (Or is it amity? Harmony? We leave it to you and your thesaurus to decide.)

IMG_2480IMG_2494IMG_2503We shared sunscreen…

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IMG_2350…and showed off our ink. (One of us even bore the Dark Mark! Go, Slytherin!)

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IMG_2455We shared towels and reading material, and we broke bread.

IMG_2264And when the time came to call it an afternoon, it was like old friends saying goodbye.

IMG_2513If you’re from far away but plan to be in New York sometime this summer, let us know. We can’t promise to get something up on short notice every time (so the more notice you can give us, the better), but we love to meet women from other parts of the country and other parts of the world who share our outlook on life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Just email us at toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com and let us know when you’re going to be in town.

And if you’re a New Yorker? Why, that just makes everything even easier.

Get in touch.

Wherever you’re from, far or near, we’ll be bosom buddies before long.

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IMG_1111We’re told that when the flood came, all God’s creatures went on the ark in pairs, two by two. Did they come off the ark that way, too, when the sun came out again?

Don’t ask us; we’re not the bible study type. But as our corner of the world has been emerging from its own seemingly endless season of dismal weather, two by two is how we’re poking our heads out into the sun again.

IMG_0935First there was our two-person expedition to visit the cherry blossoms in Central Park.

IMG_0636Then we got word that a fan from Australia was in town, so one of us joined her on a still-chilly day near the John Lennon memorial by Strawberry Fields. (You only see one of us because our Aussie friend was nervous about coworkers back home seeing her topless on the Internet. That’s ok. She did get topless in front of a few hundred total strangers on the other side of the planet. One step at a time.)

IMG_0173IMG_0169Then, after a solid week of rain, the clouds parted briefly on Sunday afternoon, and two of us headed out to Washington Square Park, where we unclad ourselves among a blissful potpourri of recent NYU grads, hula hoopers, adorable pigeon feeders, and enthusiastically patriotic canines.

IMG_0753IMG_1056IMG_1004IMG_1121No hula hoops for us, but we brought books, and the various yummies we also brought didn’t go to the birds. We read, lounged, noshed, and caught up on a winter’s worth of drama in each other’s lives. And then read some more. We are a book club and do have our priorities, after all.

IMG_0965IMG_0976IMG_0988Two by two. But the sun is shining more regularly now, and more of us are aching to feel her rays on our sun-deprived exteriors. So you’ll see larger numbers of us out and about soon. And remember, if you’d like to be part of those larger numbers yourself, we welcome all women, the bold and the curious, to join us — just email us at toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com and we’ll let you know what we’ve got coming up.

Wouldn’t you enjoy being out in the sun and free?

We hope you’ll reflect on it.

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IMG_9607We recently received an email message from a woman in Turkey that broke our heart, but also filled us with gratitude and hope. With her permission, we’re sharing her message here (but not her name).

Hi! I am a 31 year old woman from Istanbul, Turkey and I have been following your blog for a few years now. I just wanted to say that you are very, VERY fortunate sisters of mine that happen to live far, far away from me. I cannot imagine sunbathing topless here in Istanbul. I would be sexually harrassed and then arrested within an hour. Plus, I would have photos of me circulating to shame and harrass me forever.

Despite living in this reality, reading the blog and looking at the photos make me feel at peace, knowing that there are some places in the world where I could live the way I want to. I deserve like-minded sisters to read with, and my boobs deserve sunlight!

I hope to visit New York City someday, and if that day ever comes, I would LOVE to come spend an afternoon at the park with you people if it is OK. I love scifi books and comics ❤

Thank you so much for making the world a better place! Maybe someday the whole world will see that female nipples are not the worst of the planet’s problems.

Hope to meet you someday,

Love,
[NAME REDACTED]

Some people ask, why do we make such a big deal about the freedom to go topless when it’s already legal where we live? This is why.

IMG_9900IMG_87xxBAnd yes, we told her we would love to meet her if she ever comes to New York. And we would love to meet you, too, whether you live in New York or are just visiting (we’re meeting a fan from Belgium today, and one from France tomorrow!), whether you’ve never bared your breasts outdoors or have been doing it since you were a child, whether you’re nervous about it or elated, and no matter how young or old you are or what you look like. All women are welcome; all women deserve to be free.

Just email us at toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com.

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Swanbourne Jan 2018 -1While we’re still freezing our asses off here in New York City, we’re thrilled to hear from friends in other, warmer parts of the world, like our sister group in Australia. They shared some photos with us from a recent visit to Swanbourne Beach in Perth, where from all appearances it’s basically paradise on earth.

Swanbourne Jan2018 -4“Indecent exposure is defined as an act that causes offence,” writes the leader of our Aussie crew, “so nudity, toplessness, bum out, etc., is not an offence on its own. Specific areas can be defined by a specific dress or behaviour code, so we do have three beaches which are specified as not top free. Otherwise all is good. Beaches are only 20 mins from the city centre, and right in the middle is the legal nude beach, with other ones north and south. Hence we tend to ‘hang out’ on beaches more than say parks, but could if we wanted to. Backyard swimming pools go without saying.”

Swanbourne Jan2018 -2She continued: “Hope everyone in the northern half of the world defrosts soon, but we are doing just fine down here. For everyone up your way in the cold, come on downunder.”

Swanbourne Jan2018 -3Ah, how we wish we could! Nothing sounds better to a chilled New Yorker than chilling on the beach, and warming our southern hemispheres in the southern hemisphere would be lovely. Alas, the whole 24-hours-on-a-plane thing. And the be-at-work-Monday-morning thing. So we’ll wait for the warmth to migrate northward.

But more photos would not be unwelcome, girls! We can enjoy the sun vicariously, and warm ourselves with the smoldering flames of our envy. 🙂

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ETA: Ask and you shall receive! We just got these mailed to us from our girls in Oz.

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SwanRiver20180322-4.jpgSwanRiver20180322-1.jpgWill they ever visit NYC? We certainly hope so! We’ve never met any of them in the flesh, and we’d love to. 🙂

IMG_7191The last days of summer are always bittersweet for us — we wait through months of fall and winter and early spring for it finally to be warm enough for us to go outdoors without coats on, never mind with nothing at all on from the waist up, and then no sooner is it finally nice out than the leaves start falling and it’s sweater weather again. Anyway, that’s what it always feels like.

IMG_6384IMG_6520IMG_7393But here we are in mid-September, and it was nice enough and warm enough and sunny enough for us to hit the grass in Washington Square Park on Friday and not only go topless ourselves but also inspire some strangers who saw us to take their shirts off too. Case in point:

IMG_6928IMG_6964IMG_6976And our new friend wasn’t the only one joining us for the first time. We had more than a dozen people show up for this outing, and most were first timers. They came prepared with books…

IMG_6824IMG_6797IMG_6543fIMG_6699…and vintage comics…

IMG_6816IMG_6684IMG_6704…and a wonderful compendium of sexploitation movie posters from the 1970s:

IMG_6418They came with snacks or partook of the ones we brought.

IMG_6457fIMG_6873IMG_7078(By the way, is there anything like a sweet doughnut and ripe strawberries to make it feel like summer could go on forever?)

IMG_7128IMG_7114And most of all they came with the wonderful, open-minded attitudes all our members have. We’re all ages, all races, all body types, all occupations, and all the same under our clothes. We don’t judge, we don’t preach; we just relax and enjoy the freedom we’re fortunate enough to have, and that too many of our sisters around the globe do not have, or don’t know they have, or are afraid to exercise if they do know. Our goal is to set an example — we enjoy doing that at least as much as we enjoy the sun and the breeze and each other’s company.

IMG_6807IMG_6586IMG_7261IMG_7427And it’s not too late for you to join in. Don’t worry if you’re nervous, or feel shy, or have never done anything like this before. Don’t even worry about the impending colder weather. We’re betting September still has a few more warm days in store for us, and maybe October will too. (And even when it gets too cold to meet outdoors, we always find ways to keep the fun going. But for now, the park still calls…)

IMG_6535Interested? Send us email at toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com.  The time to soak up some sun is now — before down coat season begins again.

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Scout-2.jpg-largeScout Willis has done something very simple and unremarkable: walked around New York topless on a warm summer day, as is every woman’s right and every man’s. But because she posted photos of herself doing it online on services like Instagram and Twitter, she got in trouble for it. That is insane.

The good news is that she is strong and confident and proud and not backing down. Which is why we love her.

(And yes, to respond to every person who has made the suggestion, we have indeed let her know she’s welcome at any of our get-togethers. We bet she’s someone who’d appreciate a good piece of pulp fiction.)

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