Canary Beck has an article on her blog about ‘dress codes’ which is, as usual with Canary’s work, an excellent read.
But Canary’s travails with trying to establish a dress code at her sim, Basilique, meeting with resistance, to say the least, got me thinking about similar issues on SL’s naturist sims.
I’ve written about this before, with sims sometimes feeling invaded by those who make no indication that they’re ever going to clamber out of their clothes.
It’s not just a problem limited to one or two naturist sims, but all of them. Unless there’s a sim officer present, reminding visitors of the dress code in place, then people will simply stand around, dressed, in what can often creepily seem like those who visit RL naturist beaches, young males mostly, without having any intention of removing their shorts.
Spanish naturists will take matters into their own hands. If a group of young males do decide to visit the naturist beach and remain dressed, Spanish naturists will begin slow-handclapping them until, shamed, they either undress or flee. In my experience it’s usually the latter. I don’t particularly like it, but I recognise it has to be done, otherwise we reach a point where the ‘purity’ of naturist beach gets diluted. The Spanish response is ‘we’ve got maybe 20kms of naturist beach along the country’s entire coastline, so respect that we want to keep it that way, you in your board shorts have several thousand beaches you can merrily attend, and one not a kilometre from here. So go there’. A robust Spanish response means that naturist beaches remain naturist and not subjected to textile creep.
I tp’ed into one naturist sim earlier today to find six avatars at the central tp point to conduct a little experiment. Of the six of us, four females were dressed, myself included, I wanted to see if I did get a gentle reminder of dress code if any officer was present. Two in bikinis, and two of us fully dressed. Of the two males present, one was fully dressed and the other was one of those beautiful specimens who appears to be colour blind when it comes to matching genitalia colour to skin tone.
Did anyone make any move to undress? No.
Look, the dress code is ‘naked’. Is there any chance people could respect that? Or leave?
Where sim officers are present I have to say that they can be very good in ensuring the dress code remains ‘naked’. In RL the French beach of Arnaoutchot has its own ‘nude police’ who man the beach entrance and insist on any form of clothing being removed prior to entry to the beach. Yes, you probably needed your shorts to drive to the beach, and may still be wearing them when you walk from the car to the beach, but the nude police ensure the shorts come down before you go down to the sea.
I’ve encountered similar in SL, and have been IM’ed about dress code at ‘7 Hills’ and ‘Naked’ to remind me that they’re naturist sims. Sometimes this occurs before I or the geography around me has fully rezzed. I don’t get into a flap about it. ‘Yes, I know’, I’ll respond, adding a smile before my avatar peels off unwanted layers. Should I do a little foot-stomping and scream ‘I’m the editor of SL Naturist!!!! I bet I spend more time naked on the grid than you do, you little jobsworth!!!!’? No. I offer a verbal nod in the direction of the avatar officiating and comply – I was going to comply the instant I got a full rezz anyway – and offer a word of thanks. They’re only doing what’s necessary to enhance my enjoyment of SL.
So it should be elsewhere. Should I tp into Canary’s Basilique sim, nude, and if asked to dress say ‘I’m the editor of SL Naturist. We naturists have rights!!!!!!’? No, of course not. If we, SL’s naturist community, want to be shown respect, we need to provide it too. So a few clothes on for the trip to any non-naturist sim is perfectly fine by me.
In a reply to Canary’s post, I said that dressing up can be a lot of fun too. Our ‘naturist wardrobe’ postings replicate RL naturism. There’s nothing naturists like better than to get dressed up in an evening, which is why Pookes and I reflect RL naturist etiquette and manners with those types of posts. Indeed, even from a blogging perspective, there’s a lot of fun to be had looking at an item on the grid and saying ‘perfect for the naturist evening!’ And if you think there’s something wrong with that, you simply don’t fully comprehend the fullness of the naturist lifestyle. If we as a community lack any sort of exhibitions tendencies by day, by evening we naturist ladies like to step out, dressed up, looking a million dollars. It’s a theme that’s as common in naturism as carrying a towel to sit on.
Caity, over on the Cait’s World blog, clearly has found the issue of dress code as irritating to her SL as ‘textile creep’ is to mine!
I think that we’re all kind of united in our belief that wherever you go in SL, be it a club, a nude beach, a historical sim, land belonging to ‘furries’, Gorean role-play, you will enhance the SL experience for others, and particularly yourself, by dressing the part. So c’mon people….if you’re visiting naturist sims, be nude. Otherwise, don’t visit.