Archives for category: male

IMG_6273This past Saturday, five dozen people took all their clothes off in Washington Square Park. Some of our members were among them.

IMG_6041IMG_6147IMG_6135IMG_6055IMG_4250Not only did no one call the cops on this display of naked bodies, but the cops were already there and fully supportive — they were present to make sure everything went smoothly and that none of the naked people were harassed or bothered. And none of us were.

IMG_6131Now, here’s an interesting fact: one day later, if any of us had tried to undress to the exact same extent in the exact same place, we would have gotten stopped, and maybe arrested, by those exact same cops. Does that make any sense to you?

Yes, Saturday was a special day: the 5th annual “New York Bodypainting Day” festival. For five years, artist Andy Golub has brought together fellow artists from all over the country and all over the world to paint nude models on one afternoon in the summer. And yes, there is an exception in the public indecency laws for nudity that occurs in the course of making or exhibiting art. That’s why no one got arrested on Saturday.

But what’s the logic? How can it possibly be the case that sixty fully naked women and men standing in a group is an inoffensive sight one day, but the following day even just one fully naked woman or man — perhaps lying among a bunch of sunbathers such as this group that watched us for hours on Saturday — is offensive enough to be deemed illegal?

IMG_6268The prude who says a breast, a vulva, a penis is always and automatically shameful may be wrong (in our humble opinion), but at least the prude is consistent. The person who says vulvas and penises are fine on Saturday but forbidden every other day is either the strangest Sabbath observer ever or else just a hypocrite.

IMG_6308But — as long as the hypocrites are making the rules, we’ll take such opportunities for freedom as we’re granted. One day each year when we can shed the last little vestiges of our clothes out in the park is better than none.

IMG_6312IMG_6190IMG_6292And this one was better than most. The weather was absolutely perfect (not a hint of rain in the sky), the crowd was supportive (not a complaint heard, at least by our ears), there were a pianist and a xylophonist nearby for musical accompaniment (randomly), and we even were graced with a street fair right outside the park, for when our thirst required fresh-squeezed lemonade to quench it (Andy kindly supplied some snacks as well, including unintentionally appropriate ones).

IMG_6253The art that emerged from this inspiring environment was suitably inspired. Meant to reflect this year’s theme, “Movement,” we saw everything from the literal, with moving flora and fauna–

IMG_6250IMG_6263IMG_6241IMG_6338…to the metaphorical, such as a bit of cubism (which began, remember, as an attempt to show movement on a static canvas — how great to see it attempted on a rippling moving canvas!)

IMG_4240…or the sort of movement that results in social change:

IMG_4258Speaking of which, we’re a bit of a movement ourselves, aren’t we? Sparking social change, making people think differently about what they’ve always assumed. Seeking freedom.

IMG_6326On Saturday we were free. In a way we rarely have the opportunity to be. Could Monday morning be just as free someday?

Yes. Someday. We firmly believe that. With or without paint, with or without clothes, bodies should be free.

IMG_6052IMG_6143IMG_6181If you’d like to join our little movement, drop us a note: toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com. With your help, we’ve got some brick walls we’d like to bust through together.

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IMG_4834Five years ago, a painter named Andy Golub had a brilliant brainstorm. He’d been painting works of art on the bodies of individual models for some time, and had won some legal battles establishing that he had the right to do so outdoors in New York City. (It’s legal for women to be topless outdoors in New York anywhere a man can; full nudity is generally not legal in public for anyone of any gender. But there’s an exception — women and men can both be naked in public places as part of an artistic exhibition or a play. And being painted as a human canvas is certainly an artistic exhibition.)

IMG_4923So here’s the brilliant brainstorm he had: what if, instead of one painter painting one model in a public place, he brought together fifty painters and fifty models — models of all ages, sizes, races, and genders, painters from all over the country and all over the world? Suddenly, the artist and model would no longer be outnumbered by a confused and judgmental crowd — in one place, for a time, naked would be the norm. Art would be the norm.

IMG_4943And so Bodypainting Day was born. This year is the 5th anniversary, and anyone interested in attending can find the group in Washington Square Park starting around noon on Saturday, July 14. In anticipation of the big day, and maybe to get his painting arm limbered up, Andy met with us this week on our favorite rooftop sundeck and tested out some wonderful new designs.

It’s fun to be a human canvas, and even more fun to watch the process as your friends get turned into living works of art.

IMG_4461IMG_4515IMG_4734IMG_4504IMG_4585IMG_4608IMG_4682IMG_4711IMG_4533IMG_4643IMG_4683IMG_4741IMG_4856And lest you think bodypainting is just for girls…

IMG_4496IMG_4629IMG_4716IMG_4749IMG_4782Turnabout being fair play, at the end one of the painters got painted:

IMG_4887And we even had a spectator or two who remained pristine.

IMG_4656Look like fun? It was. If you’re thinking you might like to try this someday — with or without the paint — we welcome all curious and body-positive women to join us. Just send email to toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com and tell us a little about yourself. You’ll be under the sun — and who knows, maybe under the brush too — in no time.

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IMG_3695Everyone knows — at least everyone who comes to this blog does — that it’s legal in New York for women to go topless outdoors, anywhere that it’s legal for men to do it. But being fully nude is another story.

IMG_3493There are times and places where it’s legal — if you’re putting on a play or participating in the creation or exhibition of art, for instance — but generally speaking if it’s just a nice, sunny day and you’d like to lose your swimsuit bottom as well as your top, your options are limited.

IMG_3550IMG_3539What New Yorkers commonly do is go up to the roof of their apartment building and do it there, though it’s not without risk. You won’t get stopped by the police, but a neighbor might see you and object, or see you and rather too enthusiastically not object, and either way can be awkward.

Our solution for the past several summers has been to visit the sundeck of a little hotel in Chelsea that has made its rooftop officially clothing optional — the sole official nude sunbathing option in the city, as far as we know. You can only use it if you’re a guest at the hotel, so we book a room and then the roof is ours.

IMG_3387It’s a five-story walk-up, so lugging supplies can be a chore…but we’ve been known to do it anyway, reconstructing the better part of a neighborhood bodega up there, from water and beer to fruit and chips and guac and muffins and…

IMG_3708And books. Like this much-loved copy of Stephen King’s It, dating back to when its reader (It‘s reader) was just 12 years old.

IMG_3851On the other end of the spectrum, our friends at Hard Case Crime gave us an early look at Understudy For Death, which isn’t going to be in stores for another month!

IMG_3593And when we weren’t reading or noshing,

IMG_3716IMG_3889IMG_3881We hung out and chatted–

IMG_3441And cooled down in the outdoor shower–

IMG_3439And napped–

IMG_3321And hydrated–

IMG_3517IMG_3401And shot selfies, with and without the church in the background–

IMG_3514IMG_3447And got a teeny, tiny bit of exercise running from one part of the deck to the other.

IMG_3661IMG_3662IMG_3664We modeled outfits and jewelry–

IMG_3821IMG_3873IMG_4010–and heart-shaped linzer cookies.

IMG_3428As you can see, not everyone went fully nude; no one has to. It’s just really nice to have that option.

IMG_4005IMG_3609IMG_3351IMG_3927Yes, there were a few penises out in the sun too. They deserve Vitamin D as much as vulvas do. (Vulvae? Sure, if you want to be all linguistically correct about it. Which of course we do.)

IMG_3777In short, we had a wonderful time. And until this particular sort of wonderful time is allowed in the middle of Central Park, we’ll continue enjoying it in our little rooftop sanctuary.

Would you like to join us next time? Or for our next topless visit to one of the city’s parks, for that matter? Either way, drop us an email — toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com. We’d love to hear from you, and perhaps to induct you into our sun-swept sorority for the summer. IMG_3573IMG_3649

 

IMG_7435Around the start of the year, a trainer in New York made headlines when he announced that he’d be offering nude workout classes in his fitness studio. Naturally we contacted him and asked if we could try one of his classes — we’re always looking for new and interesting things to do in the nude! But the response we got was noncommittal and he managed to duck actually scheduling a session with us for the longest time. Then when he finally did schedule one — through some British PR firm, oddly — they cancelled on us at the eleventh hour.

IMG_7741Sadly, our guess is that the whole announcement was just a publicity stunt — we can find no evidence that he’s ever actually gone through with these classes (there don’t seem to be any reviews online, for instance, and no articles covering anything but the initial announcement, and no mention of these classes on his website, nor any mention on his Facebook page after the January press blitz).

But even if this particular trainer was just trying to get attention, that doesn’t mean the idea isn’t a good one.

IMG_7416IMG_7423After all, who wouldn’t prefer to work out in the nude if it were an option? No annoying seam pressing into your tailbone during stretches; no sweat collecting in your workout gear; no difficulty seeing the alignment of muscles so you can check your form. Sure, there are some exercises you wouldn’t want to do naked — jumping rope comes to mind — but there are plenty more that you would.

IMG_8199So we decided to take the idea and run with it. One of our members is a personal trainer, and she stepped in to lead the class; and in place of a gym, we booked the terrific little exercise studio we’ve used in the past for naked yoga. That, plus invitations extended to half a dozen of the most open-minded fitness buffs we know, and we were ready for our inaugural workout.

IMG_7223IMG_7324IMG_7343And it was wonderful — everything we could’ve wished. One of our participants (pictured above) had this to say about it: “What made this nude fitness class so refreshing and beautiful was that everyone participating shared the same mindset that nudity doesn’t need to be sexual. I worried much less about what I look like than I do just going to a regular gym. I was able to focus more on my form because I could clearly see what the instructor’s body was doing and see and feel my own body better. Plus, it’s very convenient to not have to bring workout clothes with you!”

IMG_7479We kicked things off with squats and pushups —

IMG_7457— then moved on to lunges and work with resistance bands —

IMG_7526IMG_7586IMG_7653— ab work and balance poses —

IMG_7642IMG_7705— some extra work for thighs and glutes —

IMG_7965IMG_8021— all interspersed with rest breaks in child’s pose, stretches, and the occasional dance interlude.

IMG_8182IMG_7608We all emerged from the session energized, if a tiny bit sore (only in the best way, of course), and determined to do it again soon.

Only next time? We want to do it outdoors on a warm day in the middle of Central Park. (Don’t worry, we’ll bring g-strings to keep it all legal.)

IMG_7685IMG_7549IMG_7513Would you like to join us? Drop us email at toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com. We’ll gladly welcome any open-minded, body-positive women in the New York area.

IMG_7718Hell, we’ll even welcome Harry Hanson, if he wants some pointers on what this whole nude workout thing is all about.

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18-02-10-Polar Bear-484A couple of times each year, the non-profit organization Human Connection Arts puts on a big public event that celebrates free expression through nudity. New York’s annual Bodypainting Day in July is the biggest, but there are others peppered throughout the calendar. Last October, for instance, the group fielded a topless float in the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade, which seemed pretty bold at the time since October isn’t the most common month for outdoor toplessness.

But it pales in comparison to February. Which was when the group gathered most recently, on a frosty, somewhat rainy Saturday afternoon, with the temperature hovering not too far above freezing, applying bodypaint indoors at a studio near Times Square–

18-02-10-Polar Bear-12518-02-10-Polar Bear-11818-02-10-Polar Bear-225–girding themselves for the arctic winds they might face–

18-02-10-Polar Bear-14618-02-10-Polar Bear-254–and then bravely heading out into the cold to march to the Crossroads of the World, greet astonished tourists,

18-02-10-Polar Bear-32118-02-10-Polar Bear-35518-02-10-Polar Bear-373hobnob with costumed characters,

18-02-10-Polar Bear-522and take photos at the iconic bleachers near the TKTS booth.

18-02-10-Polar Bear-50918-02-10-Polar Bear-496One of our members gamely took part (see if you can spot her in these terrific photos by Daniel Vialet of Leinadmedia), together with some two dozen other participants of all ages, genders, sizes, and shapes. It was an exciting and liberating event, and we’re delighted to have played a small part in it.

18-02-10-Polar Bear-446If you’re inspired by what you see but need a little more mercury in the thermometer before you’d feel comfortable going outdoors in nothing but paint, remember that July isn’t that far off.

Or just paint yourself in the colors of the sun and think warm thoughts…

18-02-10-Polar Bear-264…or do it with a bunch of friends and huddle close. 🙂

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IMG_0880“I just want to tell you,” the man in the dress shirt and necktie said, “I love what you’re doing. You’re bringing back the 1980s. Back then, everyone here was completely naked.” The smile on his face was warm and genuine, though it was hard to imagine the fond memory he was describing was accurate. People went completely naked on the piers at the Hudson River? Well, they hadn’t been developed yet; they were just rotting spurs of wood sticking out into the water; so, maybe. And yet…really?

“Yes,” he said. “You’d come here and everyone would be naked. It was free and wonderful.”

Free and wonderful: two words we could relate to, even if we still had our bottoms on. The wonderful part, especially, since it’s a wonder that in the middle of October it was still warm enough to go bare outdoors. Later, when the sun had set, we went online to search, and sure enough found this:

slide_218857_843458_freeThe Hudson Piers were once home to a flourishing gay and lesbian scene, which included nude sunbathing, until gentrification arrived and chased the sunbathers away.  Needless to say, we’re proud to be doing our part to bring it back, even if we’re only taking baby steps by comparison.

IMG_0827IMG_0814IMG_0824These days, the piers have been developed, with artful, asymmetrical grass swards and metal sculptures dotting the grounds, and the sun worshipers lounging about look like this–

IMG_0568IMG_0714But the day we came, they also looked like this:

IMG_0618IMG_0677IMG_0664And we saw the gentleman’s handstand and raised it three cartwheels.

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We certainly felt free there — no one bothered us or complained, or even gave us a dirty stare. In fact, when we saw a bare-chested man enjoying a beer at the outdoor bar at the end of the pier, we figured we’d be welcome that way too — and we were.

IMG_1023IMG_1065IMG_1077New York may not be everything it was 30 or 40  years ago, but in at least one respect it’s been freer and more wonderful since 1992, the year a state court established that it’s legal for women to go topless anywhere men can. Back in the day, maybe people went naked, but they were all breaking the law by doing so. Today, we can do what we do in total comfort and confidence.

IMG_0951IMG_0857IMG_0763Of course, the balmy temperatures won’t be around for much longer — already it’s turned colder.

But the flame of freedom? That burns all winter long.

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IMG_4928If every fall could be like this one has been so far, we’d have nothing to complain about.

IMG_4962Well, that’s not exactly true: the threat of nuclear war, racism back at home, a real son of a bitch in the White House. We have plenty to complain about. But the weather — the weather has been wonderful, and we’ve been taking full advantage of it.

IMG_5123IMG_4710IMG_4841fThis was us on our favorite rooftop sundeck, soaking up as many rays as our bodies could absorb, knowing full well that, as a certain HBO series puts it, winter is coming. We also met in the park, and we’ll let you see that shortly, but first things first. There’s really nothing like getting naked with a dozen of your friends —

IMG_4643— and for good measure a stranger or two, who quickly became new friends. (There’s nothing quite like nudity to spark fellow-feeling.)

IMG_4581IMG_4758And there’s nothing like being somewhere where it’s okay not just to take your shirt off but to take off every last stitch.

IMG_4865f(Not counting dinosaur jewelry, of course. That always stays on. Always.)

IMG_4552Someone recently commented on one of our old posts that one of our members might be upset because her vulva was showing in one of the photos. So? We have vulvas. (Most of us.) They deserve sun as much as any other part of the body, and too rarely get any. And it’s healthier to enjoy your body than to be ashamed of it.

IMG_4924IMG_4662IMG_4846What else are we not ashamed of? Reading. Reading everything under the sun, quite literally. In this case, Schott’s Original Miscellany. Not pulp fiction, but quite wonderful.

IMG_4690Also: satisfying our non-literary cravings, for instance for libations or ablutions.

IMG_4694IMG_4742IMG_5024We took butt selfies in the sun…

IMG_4810…and had fun in the shade.

IMG_5020fIMG_4941And what’s next on the docket for us? Well, we’re collecting ideas for indoor events to occupy ourselves with then the snow and sleet and wind inevitably come. But in the meantime, we’re gonna keep seizing these 80- and 90-degree days for all they’re worth.

IMG_4900IMG_4731IMG_5072IMG_4992fIf you want to carpe the diem along with us, just email us at toplesspulpfiction@gmail.com. There’s always room for more curious, brave women on our rooftop, and in our hearts.

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