Posts Tagged ‘nudity’

Nude volleyball at ESPN

October 19, 2009

From an ESPN article on nude volleyball by Eddie Matz – see below for video:

Turns out, White Thorn has had trouble keeping the participation of a certain national sports magazine a secret. As we stand beneath an inky sky on the green asphalt of Court 1 — White Thorn boasts 11 outdoor courts — the buzz of the lights gives way to the buzz of spectators. Hundreds of bodies that moments earlier weren’t there line each side of the playing area. Many are clad (they’re nudists, not stupid) and curious. “We’re on a stage,” says Michele. “Everyone is waiting to judge us.”

Sensing we’ll chicken out, a topless woman, who had been warming up with others on the other side of the court, crosses under the net, introduces herself and cajoles us into huddling up with her. “We’ve been dying for you ESPN guys to come,” she says. “See all those people? They want to see a game. Just one, just for fun.” Then she turns to Carol, who’s dressed in sweats and a tank top, and yanks off her shirt. Game on.

We end up playing not one but two games, in varying degrees of nakedness. Noah, who had conquered his demons as soon as we parked the RVs, plays completely naked. Greg wears shorts. Carol is half-clothed, Michele fully so. “It was freaking cold,” she says later. “Plus, I was too concerned with playing well.” So am I, which is why I keep my T-shirt and shorts on. But during the first game, all I can think about is an insight shared by a White Thorn vet: When you’re around a bunch of naked people and you’re the one wearing clothes, you feel like an idiot.


“USC’s Topless Professor” – from my Village Voice archives

October 9, 2009

Those interested in exhibitionism might want to check out an old Village Voice column I wrote called “USC’s Topless Professor.” I love that the Voice let me run the topless photos on their website. Yes, I miss writing that column very much but am proud of what I did with it.

Blaine had no intention of showing her tits to the over 100,000 people who’ve viewed them, but now that they’re public, she’s keeping the photos up to make a statement. “The fact that I can embrace my unmutilated breasts, and eroticize and enjoy them, is an act of resistance against patriarchy. That’s something I’ve achieved; it wasn’t handed to me and has taken a lot of work,” she says. Fittingly, Blaine’s at work on a book called Why I Won’t Get Breast Implants But You Might Want To.

USC has thus far stayed out of the fray, and the untenured Blaine does not expect to hear from the school. According to its website, “The University will not be held responsible for the content of personal Web pages. Personal Web pages shall not imply that they are representing or speaking on behalf of the University.” Perhaps Blaine will fare better than other women in similar positions, among them a Chicago Cubs ball girl fired after posing for Playboy and Marcie Betts, a corrections officer canned for baring all on alt-porn site Burning Angel prior to her employment (though Betts later won a legal ruling requiring her reinstatement with restitution of full pay and benefits).

Blaine argues vociferously in favor of her right to a public online life. “My website is not a professional venue of mine; it’s not linked to my teaching at USC. I’ve never assigned my site to students. I’ve never told them to go look and find images of me. It’s not been brought into my teaching at all,” she states. Fifty-one students who filled out surveys about Blaine’s teaching gave her high marks in all areas, offering praise such as “Blaine is without a doubt the most exhilarating whirlwind of feminist, socially conscious thinking I have experienced thus far at this institution.”