Sustainable Living

Did you know that SL has its own eco-village, Etopia?

It has always harked back -I feel- to how SL used to be some years ago, with an obvious educational quality to it.

It’s a PG sim, obviously because that educational aspect means that they’re trying to maximise the number of visitors to it. As a result, my final post for SLN (yes, I’m going to bow out now) is non-naturist. However, anyone who regards themselves as a naturist should always have one eye on environmentalism as part of a larger, wider naturism.

Care for the planet, recycling, green politics and sustainability would be elements of the naturist’s natural mindset, and you’ll find aspects of all of those things at Etopia. Please take the time to visit and learn something about the small things we can all do to make a difference.

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Education is a major part of what’s on display at Etopia

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etopia3

 

I have to say that environmentalism is a major part of my life. Whether you’re a naturist or not, these things should be important to you. Recycle and grade your rubbish. Walk or cycle if you can avoid using a car. It’s not got to be about demanding nuclear power stations close and going on a demonstration to the site, or to local government buildings. If we’re all getting the small things right, we can make a difference.

It’s a planet of finite resources and we owe it to future generations to care of it. It’s a naturism bigger than just taking your clothes off.

 

And that’s me done on SLN. There’s no point in hanging around with diminishing interest as we reach the closure date, so I’ll take this opportunity to thank everyone who commented on my posts, everyone I’ve run into in SL during the course of writing for it, and all of the readership for allowing Ella and I to have the run of our mouths and grab people by the throats when they got their interpretation of naturism (i.e. that it equates to sex) wrong.

Over and out…

 

Pookes

 

 

 

 

Heroes of Naturism : the story so far & the SL dimension

By now, you’ll be aware that we’ve run an occasional series during the course of our existence where we’ve identified ‘heroes of naturism’, people who’ve advanced the naturist cause, or through their visibility have advanced the normalisation of nudity in society.

So far, the list has extended to Miley Cyrus, the 1980s British naturist film Educating Julie, Australian internet model Vanessa B, French performance artist Enna Chaton, French naturist pioneer Christine Lecocq,  author France Guillain, The Colombian Ladies Cycling Team, Swedish painter Anders Zorn, Brazilian actress Vera Fischer, German figure skater Katarina Witt, Brazilian naturist documentary subject and naturist pioneer Carina Moreschi. While not featured in that ‘series’, as such, we could also add San Franciscan naturist rights & film maker Gypsy Taub and English actress Helen Mirren.

 

While not nude, we could also salute the women behind the Iranian ‘Stealthy Freedoms’ campaign for removing their headscarves in a patriarchal society and striking a blow for further freedoms. Or, while we disagree with some of the methodology, the women of Femen.

There will be further instalments in the future.

What we haven’t done, so far, is to identify some of what we regard as the heroes of SL naturism. I’d like to correct that omission today.

There have, for us, been some stand out heroes of SL naturism over the past number of years. In no particular order, Brenda Hoisin, Elbag Gable, Gray Muircastle, Meikel Skytower, Kaiya Mumba and Lupe.

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Brenda
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Gray

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Lupe

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Meikel

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Kaiya

Over the years, at Eden Naturopolis, at Su Casa Naturist, at 7 Hills Naturist, at Wild Coast/Turtle Beach and at Lupe’s Magical Forest, they’ve provided the sims in which naturism has flourished over much of the source of SL’s life. For those of us who enjoy the naturist lifestyle, their sims have been constant, imaginative & fun. Other naturist locations come and go, but these are probably the premier naturist locations in SL right now, as they were in the past and, hopefully as they’ll be in the future.

It’s probably not too far fetched to say that many SL avatars who aren’t naturist in RL have discovered and enjoyed a replication of genuine naturism at their sims. The people named have pioneered virtual naturism in their own unique ways and they’ve almost certainly spread the naturist message in a positive way.

If SL Naturist wishes to identify ‘heroes of naturism’, these people fit the bill in an SL environment. Too often, we can take naturist sims (or any sims for that matter) for granted, without realising how much time, effort and, yes indeed, money people put in to enhance our second lives. Many people took Evacaroline’s ‘Sweden Naturist’, another former long-standing naturist sim, for granted until it was gone.

In the former eastern Europe, ‘western ideas’ were spread by a samizdat system. That is, dissident activity was spread underground, be it sharing works of literature or bootlegged tapes of The Beatles. Vaclav Havel, the late president of Czechoslovakia and, after its split from Slovakia, the Czech Republic, was also an author who spoke about the value of these samizdat artefacts changing his mindset, leaning him towards ‘western’ ways.

In their way, those listed above will have provided a samizdat style towards their SL projects. People previously unaware of naturism, or the genuine naturist lifestyle, will have been brought to the lifestyle partly through the efforts of those named.

As readily as the list of our real life naturist heroes, those named should also be included on our list.

Ella

 

Be proud of your naturism

I’ve always been fairly open about my naturism. It was my Dad, via my aunt (married to a Dutchman), who first asked if I fancied a summer job alongside my cousin, who would be working in a restaurant owned by my uncle‘s friend, that commenced my naturist activities twenty years ago this summer.

Which is how we ended up in Cap D’Agde, waiting on tables and doing the washing up under a blistering sun six days a week form mid-June to mid-September, 1995.

Back then mobile phones were in their infancy, so keeping in touch with home was a once or twice weekly affair from a call box (remember them?) with the conversation ending when I ran out of loose change with which to feed the phone.

So…we worked six long days. Dressed. The cafe owner, quite rightly, I’d say, demanded the staff be dressed for hygiene purposes when dealing with food, and we’d have to throw our branded T-shirts into the washing machine (he was fine with us wearing our own shorts) at the end of each shift, retrieve them from the washing machine and dry them in the sun for an hour the following morning before the next shift began. I was fine with being dressed that first week. I wasn’t a naturist. So we’d work 12 hours, I’d change into one of my own T-shirts and we’d toddle back to our apartment at 200am each morning.

For six long days did we labour, and on the seventh, we rested. Our day off! The cafe closed on a Monday while the owner replenished supplies, did his paperwork and so on, and Monday also seemed to be a relatively quiet day business-wise, as people still had that weekend-partying mentality, with Monday being a detox and nurse the hangover kind of day.

I’ve written about my debut before, so I’ll quickly recap for the benefit of new readers. On our day off we made our way to the pool, my cousin and I in our brand new bikinis. She immediately removed hers and began sunbathing, I took….a little while before the top and then the bottoms came off.

Where was I? Oh yes, in the call box! So I rang home and Mum answered. A bit of general ‘are you settling in? what’s the weather like?’ conversation and then… ‘and have you gone naked with everyone else?’._enf_04 (2)

Trying to sound more grown up and sophisticated than a rather innocent, just-turned-18 year old, I was hoping it would sound like ‘oh yes, it’s a perfectly natural way to live here, nothing to it’ with some gravitas to it. Instead I just squeaked, slightly embarrassed’, ‘yes!’

‘Good for you, dear’, Mum said as if I’d just told her I’d earned so much in tips. ‘I’ve just told your father and he says ‘well done”, she continued.

You see, while the whole family knew I’d be working in a naturist resort, no one knew if I’d participate. There’s a very good reason for the family thinking this. At 18 I was the school-dance wallflower, the skinny girl with no boobs and big, horrible unfashionable glasses which are now fashionable. Never had a boyfriend, happiest with my face buried in a book, wouldn’t say boo to a mouse.

Looking back, I think my Dad maybe nudged me to go, his only daughter not being very well versed in the ways of the world. An innocent abroad. I think he maybe thought it might make me sink or swim. I think it may be that my parents expected me home after a week or two.

The naturism was kind of incidental. I feel I was maybe nudged into that job as I would have been any other summer, gap-year job had it come up. I could, just as easily, have ended up spending the summer working in a supermarket a mile away from our house had the opportunity presented itself.12-pic

By chance, it was naturism, and I swam rather than sank. Indeed, it reached the point, about three weeks in, if I remember correctly, that my cousin and I kept towels in the cafe, and at the end of the shift we’d strip off, have a quick, refreshing swim in a pool that was officially closed for the evening, and then wander the mile or so back to our apartment naked, towels around our shoulders or slung over our shoulders. Around the same time we established a routine of getting up fifteen minutes earlier to walk naked to the pool (now officially open) for a quick dip prior to washing down tables and setting out ash-trays while still nude and dripping wet (but not for long under the sun!). Then, as opening time approached, we’d stick on our shorts and T-shirts for another 12 hour shift.

By the time I cam home the entire family knew I was now an enthusiastic naturist. ‘You can’t believe how free it feels swimming without a costume’, I’d gush to whichever parent answered the phone. It was something I couldn’t hide from family. They knew, right from the start.

Nowadays, most of my social circle also know I’m naturist and last summer I took two non-naturist friends on holiday with me for a week in Spain. They returned a week later as, if not committed naturists, then two ladies who’ve experienced and participated in the naturist lifestyle, something else I covered on the blog last summer. Incidentally, at the time of writing, a repeat is very much something that could happen this June.

I don’t talk about this at the school gates, I have to say, quite simply because it’s not really something that comes up. Am I going on holiday? Yes. Where to? I’ll mention the name. They’ve never heard of it. It’s half way between Murcia and Almeria, I’ll say. Never heard of either of them, they’ll say. And the conversation generally moves on. It’s just a family holiday in Spain. Would I tell them it was naturist if pressed? Yes. Now, I would. I’m not embarrassed or ashamed by naturism. It’s not something I feel I need to hide.4100592908_3600a2d655_b

What about work? There was a time when I would not have voiced my holiday preferences in a work environment. Sometimes that was simply because I work there, they don’t control my life outside my contract of employment, and it was none of their business. Am I writing ‘naturist’ on my CV? No. I don’t write ‘bakes her own bread’ on my CV either. And you don’t write ‘deep sea fisherman’ on your CV. Or ‘I like a fortnight chilling with a good book and a glass of chianti, trying to forget your ugly faces’ on your CV. It’s irrelevant to work. However, where the subject has arisen, I’ve been open about it. Yes, I like to bake my own bread. It’s fresher and tastes better than shop-bought. There! I’ve said it. Judge me!

I present the case and my logical reasons for participating in a thing, be it bread baking or naturism. You don’t like it? Fine, no one is asking you to be a baker. Or a naturist. It’s something I do, big deal. It’s not affecting your life whether I make banana bread or take my clothes off on a beach where everyone else has their clothes off.

People, if you do tell them you’re a naturist, don’t recoil in horror. I’ve never experienced that. They’re more fascinated than anything else. Occasionally I’m the one who is taken aback when that matronly woman in another office says ‘oh yes, my husband and I have been naturists for years’ or some senior figure says ‘yeah, did that in Greece last year and loved it’.

Many of the posts on this blog relate to the normalisation of nudity in real life (RL) society. We can only continue an upwards curve to make it appear as normal as a bikini if we’re all proud of the fact that we’re naturists. We should have nothing to hide or feel shame or embarrassment about.

Of course I recognise that for employment advancement reasons people don’t want their naturism widely publicised. I accept that. Nor, for the same reason, do they want their photos splashed all over the internet -although that attitude is changing, people seem to care less and less about being photographed nude (and I have a ‘selfies’ related post coming up on that debate). Where naturism is still perceived very much an ‘older person’s’ lifestyle, could that be because it’s when we get older and retirement arrives, or is just around the corner, we are no longer concerned with being seen? The situation is that an employer can no longer ‘hurt’ us in that respect, and married to a realisation that we are now much more comfortable with our own skins than we were in our uncertain teens and vain 20s, we accept ourselves, mentally and physically, which I believes results in many people ‘coming out’ as naturist in their 40s & 50s.tumblr_mhh41qkP4z1r8ux0mo1_1280

I know that, in sexual terms, there’s such a thing as being ‘bi-curious‘. I’ve no idea what sort of percentage of people would identify themselves as ‘bi curious’ (and from what I’ve read it would appear that it’s women to whom the term is more regularly applied. The Daily Mail identifies about 50% of the female population being bi-curious, and the Huffington Post recommends it to women over 50. Something of a porn trope, and the fantasy of a male sharing a bed with two females who, when finished with the heterosexual sex, begin performing some form of girl/girl activity. I don’t imagine this threesome would ever be portrayed as two males and a female, with the two males subsequently performing some manner of homosexual activity with each other.

I’ve no idea where they get these figures from, or how much it may be true or made up. What I will tell you, though, is that it would be my belief that probably well over 80% of the world’s population are probably ‘nat-curious‘. Consider it: if we hear there’s a naturist beach in the vicinity, we can be sure that many people will go to view it. Because naked bodies, even those in a non-sexual environment, still excite us. Of course they do. These are primal needs. Since man starting drawing on cave walls humans have been drawing and then subsequently, sculpting, painting and photographing nudes. In fact, some of us mould them from pixels on a screen! A thousand years from now, when new technologies not yet invented or imagined are being utilised for the delivery of information, the human race (if it survives that long) will be using that technology to depict ‘the nude’.enf9

Ours may be a brutal world, but ‘the nude’ unites us. Few of us would consider it ‘disgusting’. China, Iran, Islamic State, North Korea…..the red blood’s still the same. You don’t think that, despite the repression, some government official in Kim Jong Un’s inner circle isn’t trying to imagine that foxy little ‘comrade’ in her lingerie or less? Hmmm…maybe not a great analogy, as we read that Kim Jong Un is in the process of assembling a ‘harem’. a ‘pleasure troupe’.  We know that the same primal urges exist, despite the fact that he’s a dangerous nut-job.

And yet many people fear nudity, simply because we still consider it to be beyond ‘normal’ social conventions.

Which is why I’m a firm believer in those of us who do embrace naturism as a lifestyle choice working hard to promote, positively, and be proud of the fact. It’s only by talking about it and seeing it presented positively in the media that we ‘normalise’ it. Hence Femen, hence #freethenipple, hence top-free equality.

Let’s track back a couple of paragraphs and apply it to Second Life. (SL)89212288

There are many avatars in SL whose nat-curiosity is fulfilled, by some extent, to the fact that they can go nude, that they can enjoy the naturist lifestyle, within the game. No boss to worry about. No body confidence issues to worry about. I know from speaking to them that they lack confidence or sometimes simply opportunity to indulge in the lifestyle. Which is fine. Not everyone has opportunity, or self-confidence, to strip off in public. Sometimes they lack education in the topic, which is why -within the virtual world of SL- I keep trying to promote the positive values of it all, as a family friendly, non-sexual lifestyle that encourages exercise and good health. The hope is that you can promote the lifestyle, within the game, so that people will not only try it, but try it with a framework of the best motives and understanding.

That’s an uphill task. It’s not our place to criticise sims where avatars get naked and indulge in cybersex. If that’s people’s needs from the game, we aren’t SL’s moral compass or guide. But we do feel it is our responsibility to keep banging on about these essentially cybersex sims not advertising or promoting themselves as ‘nudist’ or ‘naturist’. Even then, it’s a wobbly tightrope to traverse. Cap D’Agde, where I made my own naturist debut twenty years ago, was a genuine naturist resort then, but has not become over-run, at least in terms of the media coverage afforded it, by voyeurs, exhibitionists and swingers. Yet it sits cheek by jowl with what are still a large number of traditional, genuine naturists. So where do I draw the line on SL naturism? If a sim has any poseballs, do I rule it out from coverage? It’s possible to send an avatar to a naturist sim to converse with others and work up a tan, revolving slowly on a beach bed while, just behind those trees, two other avatars are going at it hammer and tongs as they bump pixels.-81123105062

This blog can’t stand still. We must develop, change, tweak and fine tune what we do.

We need to continue a fight to promote positive naturist values. We need to fight against the nudity=sex locations who don’t understand and never will. But that shouldn’t stop us trying. We also need to be proud of our naturism, in and out of SL, and not to be afraid of the debates it might raise.

 

Ella

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Eco-naturist, a ‘greener’ tribe.

While researching posts on Second Life as a predictor of social change, and Shaking the roots of the morality police, I came across a piece from the Independent newspaper, from August 2008, wherein naturism was being promoted as a ‘greener’ holiday choice.

Part of the argument ran that, requiring less clothing, naturists packed less luggage, an aircraft’s payload was lighter, this requiring less fuel and producing less carbon dioxide.

I’d never thought of it like that before!

The article  is a bit tongue in cheek, but it subsequently led me to the Econudes.org website.

Their mission statement says that Eco Nudes represents the Nudist and Naturist who is positively committed to sane ecological principles to help ensure that Mankind may survive the coming ecological upheavals facing the world. Eco Nudes strive towards a Vegetarian/Vegan Nudist/Naturist Lifestyle, believing that such a lifestyle offers the best chance for survival, real peace and harmony.eko camp

While not apparently overly active, the site is still active, and I’d recommend it as a jumping-on point for naturists who do care for the environment, a long established cornerstone of the movement.

So just how much of ‘a thing’ is eco-naturism? I kept digging and learned that you could volunteer to help at an eco- naturist campsite in Portugal, and that there is an eco-friendly naturist campsite in Montenegro, called Camp Monte, begun by a British couple, Steve and Denise, who (like SL avatar and RL vegetable farmer Tisha) dropped out of their rat-race some years ago to pursue their dream.

Indeed, the owners say on the website that ‘We were not eco warriors when we embarked on establishing Camp Full Monte. We were driven by pragmatism, economics and availability of products. We had no mains power, water or sewage systems, we had to find alternative solutions. To our surprise and delight taking an environmentally sympathetic route held the answer.’

The site, incidentally, is only 30 minutes drive from Dubrovnik, an airport served from the UK much better than the usual Croatian naturist havens.

We are often told that naturism is an ageing lifestyle (correct!) but evidence of the eco-naturist seems to me to be a way wherein naturist could be made current, relevant and (dare i say it?) ‘sexier’ to a younger generation (in the context of ‘sexy’ being ‘fashionable’).

This is a theme I may try to develop over the next few weeks, to see just where RL naturism could go in order to thrive, and to see if ideas pertaining to this are already germinating in the minds of SL users. It’s hardly a ‘representative poll’, but on the evidence I’m seeing, the typical Second Life user is increasingly one who has real life concerns for the environment and is willing to share these when prompted.

Are you an SL user for whom ecological concerns form part of your value system? I would be delighted to learn if SL users do have broad values that fir in with environmentalism and the new ‘counter culture’, of which RL naturism may be considered to be part.

 

Ella

 

 

 

 

 

Vanadisser

It’s worth pointing out that we aren’t the only SL blog that covers the topic of easy going naturism with SL, while referencing RL naturism too.

The Vanadisser blog is excellent for thoughts on various elements of nudity within real life, as then percolated through into SL with some wonderful accompanying photographs.

The site is in Swedish (the blog appears to be operating out of the beautiful city of Gothenburg), but there’s a translate button on the website to enable you to get an English version.

Written by Vanadis, I’ve been searching SL’s database to see if I could identify her and add her as a friend. Unfortunately there’s a whole list of Vanadis’s in SL’s database, so I’ve not been able to identify her as yet. If I read correctly, she’s currently on maternity leave, so it may be some time before life settles back into a routine that allows her to begin blogging again, but I hope she does, as it’s a superbly written blog that touches on a variety of topics, with a theme of nudity/naturism never far away.

I hope Vanadis doesn’t mind me, in this instance,  using someone else’s work -hers- to illustrate this post.

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©2015 Vanadisseer blog

I note that we’re linked into Vanadis’ blog list so if you’re reading, Vanadis, or if anyone who knows Vanadis is reading, please let me know your (her) full name, so that I (Ella Keng in SL) can find you and hopefully add you to my friends’ list. I feel a collaborative project/post might be a something we could do.

Ella

Editorial: All-Nudist.

I’m delighted to find that the All-Nudist website has decided to keep his little flame war, or drama, going. (Note: Irony is present in this sentence. See if you can spot it, readers).

You can read all about it, the most important issue in global naturism today, via the link. (Note:  Sarcasm is present in this sentence. See if you can spot it, readers).

I’m assuming that this will be the final word on the matter. After all, there’s not much point in All-Nudist providing a blog site, this one, with the continuing oxygen of publicity, an act that would undermine claims that the All-Nudist site will cast us adrift.

I’m disappointed, however, to find myself called ‘Ellen’ throughout. (Note: there is no irony or sarcasm present in this sentence, so don’t go looking, readers).

I’ve responded to the article, and it’s reprinted below in its entirety.

The name is ELLA (as in Fitzgerald), not ELLEN (as in DeGeneres). Get it right.

Be honest here, it’s hardly with ‘regret’ that you’re removing all links to SLN. As you freely admit in a fairly threatening manner on SLN you had this response written and ready to go unless we provided you -the self-appointed God of all internet naturist content- with ‘a damned good excuse’. You’re being disingenuous and dishonest with your readers.

I’m under no obligation to provide you or anyone else with any sort of excuse for anything. It’s an online blog about cartoon characters in a cartoon world living a niche lifestyle. The world has more important things to think about. A writer goes off-message about cartoons and you go postal. Really? Your life over the past couple of days amounts to THAT?

If you want to remove all links, knock yourself out. SLN existed before All-Nudist was aware of our existence, and we’ll battle on in the face of the wrath of the self-appointed God of internet naturism casting pestilence and plagues of locusts in our direction.

Stop spitting the dummy and throwing the toys out of the pram. It you want a bit of internet drama in your life, go ahead. We’re probably better off keeping that, and your website, away from us in that case.

Ella (with an ‘a’, not an ‘e’ and an ‘n’)

So…that’s the line drawn under that, I hope. Back to our usual business of naked cartoons…the most important aspect of global naturism today.

Ella (with an ‘a’, not an ‘e’ and an ‘n’)

‘Naturism is something that you LIVE’

The new February edition of Naturisme TV is online, presented by Betty Boost (pictured below), who has delivered what I think has to be the quote of the year with regard to naturism. While describing it, Betty says that naturism isn’t something that you do, but that naturism is ‘something that you live’. What a wonderful, and accurate, way to describe the lifestyle so many of us choose!

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You can watch the latest edition of Naturisme TV here, and if you watch in HD the programme comes complete with English subtitles. 🙂

 

Ella