Friday, April 20, 2007

Benjamin Roston, 1919-2007, Inventer of the Landmine Detector, Naturist

Tributes for inventor of the landmine detector

20 April 2007

A PERSON'S last words can rarely sum up their lives as well as Highgate resident and inventor of the first practical mine detector, Benjamin Roston. "I'm happy to die", he told doctors last week, "as long as there is no chance of survival".

Mr Roston was born in 1919 and grew up in Warsaw where his family would go into hiding every Christmas to avoid the sporadic attacks on Jews. A desire to escape his surroundings led to a fierce pursuit of knowledge, education, peace and freedom, which would continue throughout his life.

Aged 17 Mr Roston moved to London to study at university. The Second World War broke out a few years later and he never returned to Warsaw. His interests in maths and engineering led him to work for the Coal Board where he discovered the first practical method of detecting landmines. He sold the patent in 1948 for £1 and the right to be naturalised in Britain.

His daughter Suzy Roston said: "He always told us he had worked to save people's lives." The injustices Mr Roston faced forged a strong sense of activism which led him to join the Progressive League, Fabian Society and Labour Party. He attended meetings and wrote letters of protest until the end of his life.His battles for freedom also stemmed from a genuine appreciation of it. He loved the outdoors and was a keen naturist. Suzy Roston said: "Every bit of sun that came he'd rush up the M1, and loved lying on the beach and swimming in the nude. He even managed to convert a few people to it with his charm."

Mr Roston, who lived on Southwood Lawn Road, died of heart failure aged 87 at the Royal Brompton Hospital, Kensington, last Friday. He leaves behind his partner of 20 years, Tilly Haar and three daughters, Miriam, Carmel and Suzy Roston.

Nutmeg State Students Urged to Undress to De-Stress

Students invited to shed stress, clothes
Emily Shields – The Daily Free Press
April 20, 2007

WOODSTOCK, CONNECTICUT -- As college students buckle down for a week of long exams and even longer papers, a nudist retreat in Connecticut is extending an invitation their way for a day when they can drop all their stress -- and clothes. As part of its plan to attract more youthful members, the Solair Recreation League in Woodstock, Conn., has invited students from more than 30 New England colleges to participate in the first of what it hopes will become an annual Inter-College Nudist Day on May 5. The retreat will include biking, volleyball, tennis, boating, hiking, swimming and fishing on the resort's 400 private acres. According to General Manager Donna Mae Olson, the League is hoping to attract students to help bring a youthful crowd and dispel the notion that nudism is reserved for older generations -- 12 percent of the organization' s 400 members are between 18 and 28 years old.And although the Connecticut resort is trying to attract a new crowd, nudist organizations have been growing significantly in the past 15 years, said American Association for Nude Recreation spokesman Steve Vickers. In its 76-year history, the AANR has acquired almost 50,000 members and opened resorts, clubs and campgrounds throughout the United States, with Forbes estimating in 2003 the nude recreation industry earns $400 million per year, Vickers said. "It's kind of exploded, and I'm still not sure why," he said. "There's been a steady flow of inquiries. Professors are asking us to come speak in classes." The Naturist Society, a nudist organization of about 20,000 members, will send two representatives to write about the event for its industry quarterly magazine, Nude and Natural."My advice to everybody is: 'Try it,'" said Naturist Society spokeswoman Nicky Hoffman. "It's not for everyone. Naturism is a personal choice. If it makes you feel better about yourself, and accept yourself for who you are, then that's great."Hoffman said nudists range from babies to elderly men and women and work as doctors, lawyers, engineers and students -- a far cry from the stereotypes of nudists as being old, backwoods hippies or perverts.

"A lot of people think that we get together and it's just a big, swinging sex party, but it's not the case," she said. "I have never, ever felt threatened or uncomfortable by anyone that I have encountered."Despite this the nudist lifestyle will always be criticized, said Tracy Horgan, who plans to attend the event as a Naturist Society representative. Hoffman said she and a friend were once harassed by a "religious zealot" while they were walking to a nude beach, although they were fully clothed at the time.Hoffman said the religious man turned to Hoffman's middle-aged female friend and shouted, "You're worse than a [prostitute] . You take your clothes off and don't get paid for it."Olson said the Solair retreat is inclusive and seeks members of all ages and even families, adding anyone with the slightest interest in nudism is encouraged to participate."We're a very close community," she said. "We want people to understand that social nudity is about body acceptance. It is not about any sort of sexual activity or perversion."We have specific ground rules," Olson continued. "If you are in violation of the rules, we will ask you to leave."Though she was not previously aware of the retreat, College of Arts and Sciences junior Maddy Brisotti said she might be interested in attending simply to see what nudism is all about. "I think it would be a life-changing experience, even just for a day," she said. "If you can be comfortable with [nudity], you can do anything."We can finally understand what people look like," Brisotti added. "You don't get exposed to what real people look like."CAS sophomore Veena Jeevanandan, however, said she has reservations about being nude around other people."I'd be creeped out," she said. "I wouldn't do it myself, but I wouldn't judge other people who did it, either."


Bare Here and There

Why Are Americans Afraid of Being Naked?
By Dara Colwell, AlterNet. Posted April 19, 2007.
In the Netherlands people can be naked in their gardens, the beach and recently the gym. But in America, even chocolate sculptures can't be without clothes. What gives?

When Catholic protesters recently shut down a New York exhibit displaying a naked, life-sized Jesus sculpted from chocolate, the outcry wasn't totally unexpected. Labeled offensive by critics, the artwork touched an angry nerve by pushing religion and nudity -- two substances that historically don't mix -- into the limelight. While the media was quick to exploit the story, it also expressed surprising modesty when it came to the naked Christ, avoiding the full frontal and opting for photos of the Lord's backside.

But in Europe, and particularly the Netherlands, where bakeries display anatomically correct marzipan nudes in their front windows right next to chocolate bunnies and chicks, such furor

over confectionary draws a complete blank. On this side of the Atlantic, when it comes to nudity, Europeans happily assert they've got absolutely nothing to hide.

"The Netherlands is a liberal country where public nakedness is allowed, and that's the way it should be -- that's why there's a law for it," says Ragna Verwer of the Dutch Naturist Federation (NFN), a 70,000-member-strong organization established to expand naturist activities.

According to Verwer, 1.9 million Dutch regularly get nude, going to nude beaches or stripping down in their own gardens, though she estimates the numbers are much higher as NFN doesn't include sauna-goers in its research. "Naked recreation is well accepted here. But we have to take care that things stay this way, which is why we often discuss these matters with local city councils and recreation areas to create more places."

Legally, in Netherlands people are allowed to be naked anywhere except public roads or when they annoy others, a law in play since 1986. It is not uncommon to find nude swimming sessions at public swimming pools, nude or topless beaches. Recently, Fitworld, a gym in Heteren in the eastern Netherlands, introduced Naked Sunday, offering locals the opportunity for bare workouts. This quickly proved a popular idea -- at least with journalists, photographers and television crews, who easily outnumbered participants on the opening day.

"I've done interviews with people from Russia, Ireland, Canada, Australia, America and Turkey," says Fitworld's owner, Patrick de Man, who says Naked Sunday was in part a competitive response to other gyms offering pole dancing courses, but also a response to a request from two of his naturist clients. De Man says the amount of attention he received both from home and abroad was surprising because "being naked is absolutely normal here," though admittedly, bare bench presses were totally new to Holland. But the owner has also received complaints from locals, mostly about sanitation, and at least one member wrote on the club's website that he was switching gyms.

"A lot people from the church have sent me letters about God and stuff like that. But I tell them God was the first man of naturism. He and Adam and Eve were all naked on Earth," says de Man, taking the criticism rather pragmatically. True -- at least until the couple donned their first fig leaves, provoking centuries of subsequent debate.

"Nudity is definitely not shocking or even arousing," says Mandy Servais, a customer at Amsterdam's Sauna Deco, in a robe wrapped loosely around her body, which for all intents and purposes, was naked, as Dutch saunas are visited in the buff. Says Servais, who has frequented saunas since she was a teen, "I think as a society we're very simple and take a practical approach to sex and nudity. We think that everything that exists is normal so there's no need to make a fuss. We're not really occupied with what others think."

Verwer mirrors Servais' response. "I think the Dutch believe let everyone have their dignity and do what they enjoy most. This isn't just how we think about naked recreation, the same goes for gays --everyone's accepted," she says.

While the Dutch seem to accept that underneath their clothing everyone's naked, the same laissez-faire attitude doesn't apply in the States, where the public has been schooled in the cultural ideology that "nude is naughty," and nudity is regarded as sexual.

Perhaps much of this attitude can be chalked down to America's cultural forefathers, the Puritans, whose deeply religious moral zeal made them fear nudity so much they refused to bathe, ensuring a future of national prudishness.

This might appear a huge contradiction given the American media's rampant appetite for sex, but how else to explain the fury over Janet Jackson's "wardrobe malfunction" and the network's rush to cleanup before facing clampdowns and stiff fines? Or PBS's need to position the disclaimer "For mature audiences only" when broadcasting footage of Michelangelo's David.

A further inconsistency when it comes to nudity is what Americans regard as risqué: barely clad Victoria Secret models strutting their way across television or nude grandmothers? As Dove soap found out this March, it's the latter. The Federal Communications Commission, which regulates America's broadcast media, banned a series of prime-time ads depicting six middle-aged women posing nude for Dove Proage products, claiming it was inappropriate, though the ads ran successfully in Europe and Canada.

Ironically, Dove's parent company is the Anglo-Dutch giant Unilever. While a number of pro-family and women's groups complained the ad contributed to the further commercial sexualization of women -- an ongoing and valid debate -- clearly, older nudity is threatening because our culture rarely separates nakedness from sex, which is something the elder crowd, at least until Viagra, wasn't supposed to be having.

On a similar note, in 2004 Wal-Mart, never one to balk at profits, refused to sell Jon Stewart's book "America," which featured doctored nude photos of Supreme Court judges. Old, saggy bodies were simply too offensive compared to, say, the number of slasher films Wal-Mart also carries.

Of the Dove Proage ads, says Claire Taylor, who works in international advertising, including projects with Ogilvy & Mather, the company responsible for the Dove ad campaign, "If the ad featured 20-year olds, there'd be no problem. It's so hypocritical."

Taylor, an American who has lived in Amsterdam for the last 25 years, thinks the negative reaction stateside is due to "puritanical prudishness," which doesn't balk at violence or soft porn on television, yet is offended by older nudity. "Now seeing older bodies -- that's reality TV if you want reality," Taylor quips.

Another, perhaps sobering, reality: America has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in the industrialized world, according to the American Association of Pediatrics, and a rate that exceeds the Dutch by nine-fold. A healthy attitude to nudity as well as sex, something the Dutch are regaled for, might have a positive impact as more exposure typically leads to greater information.

Still, in America, being naked remains complex. Because our associations are often limited to porn, hippy naturalists, or the $400 million a year nude recreation industry, nudity is either seen as sexual or a gimmick. Take journalistic "undercover" exposes -- a choice phrase, given the situation -- on nudists at play ("Just look at those guys playing tennis!").

Or the media's buzz over photographer Spencer Tunick and his nude landscapes. Tunick, who specializes in photographing hundreds of naked bodies sprawled together in abstract forms against an urban backdrop, has definitely pushed social boundaries at home. But in Amsterdam, where Tunick is due this summer, it's a different story -- or no story. "Is it a big deal that's everyone's naked when everyone's naked?" asks Servais.

In Europe, then, clearly neither moral outrage nor public disorder greets nudity. Men don't go wild, women remain safe and the zero fashion statement remains just that, something with zero impact.

Taylor, who has fully adapted to Dutch ways, has taken her American sisters to the sauna when they visit and watched their transition from shock to comfort. "They're both overweight, so at first they were horrified. But one of my sisters quickly got used to being naked and it felt natural. When you see that other people are flabby and kind of falling apart, it's OK," she says, laughing. "Listen, you got to check out each other's parts, but seeing the Cesearean scars, fat rolls, cellulite, eczema and aging bodies of the over 50s crowd puts it all in perspective -- you realize how absolutely unique a gorgeous naked body is. Americans might associate nudity with eroticism but here, it's only associated with nakedness," she says.

But there is a glimmer of hope. Sometimes nudity can be a useful, positive statement, even in the States. Like the World Naked Bike Ride, a sort of "Critical Ass" of cyclists organized to protest car culture, promote sustainability practices and celebrate creative expression. Organized by Conrad Schmidt, a South African living in Vancouver, British Columbia, the international event is clothing optional.

"It's a way of challenging the stifling conformity we get here in Vancouver and North America, and certainly nudity laws challenge a system that needs shaking up," says Schmidt, who has been surprised how trouble-free the rides have been on a whole, though in America, Chicago tried to shut the event down and Los Angeles, never a hotbed of community activism, boasted a larger police-to-participant ratio.

"In Portland, people are always riding naked these days, but what's strange is they're apparently harassed more by the police when they're clothed," he says. "Nudity is tough for law enforcement because it involves the concept of indecent exposure. There's no good definition of what's indecent about the human body."

Nudists on Line or Online Sex? A Case for China

Chinese online nudist off the hook
April 18 2007 at 03:43PM

Beijing - A Beijing court has thrown out a case against a woman arrested for organising nude online chatting because China's pornography laws do not mention chat rooms, state media reported on Wednesday.

The 36-year-old, identified by Xinhua news agency only by her surnamed Li, was arrested three years ago on pornography charges after taking off her clothes and chatting with other Internet users via webcam, the agency said.

Li, who also organised chat rooms for other nudists, has said she was "seeking excitement", Xinhua said.

However, prosecutors subsequently determined they were in a legal "blind spot" as online chat rooms are not defined in pornography laws.

New laws introduced since her arrest also failed to address the issue, it said.

"Under the existing laws, it is inappropriate to treat this as a criminal offence," Li Kai, a prosecutor in western Beijing's Shijinshan district, was quoted as saying.

He added that his office could not prove that Li had committed the criminal act of disseminating pornographic materials.

Members of China's rubber-stamp lawmaking bodies are routinely criticised for having little knowledge of the complex issues they are charged with legislating.

Authorities plan to stage a major crackdown on cyber-porn, which is booming in China, Xinhua reported last week. Ten government departments will spend the next six months removing pornography from the Web as part of the campaign.Online pornography is already illegal and China takes great efforts to ban offending sites, but cyber-sex remains widely available to anyone who wants to search hard enough.

Friday, April 13, 2007

To Beat the Arizona Heat...

A vacation from your clothes
Having nothing to wear isn't a problem at this resort
by Leah Duran published on Thursday, April 12, 2007


In a quiet corner of New River, Ariz., residents and visitors hike, play volleyball and swim - naked. Welcome to Shangri La Ranch, a family-friendly resort 45 minutes north of Phoenix where nudity is the norm. Although nudity is only required at the pool, vacationers usually only don clothes when they are needed as protection from sun or rain, says Horst Kraus, who co-owns the ranch with his wife.

"To some nudists, being clothes-free is an expression of freedom from the pressures of society that say you have to wear certain clothes to belong to certain groups," Kraus says. "[Being naked] is a natural instinct for us."

Northern Arizona University student Danielle Faber, 19, was introduced to the nudist lifestyle when she was 10. "It's relaxing and comfortable," says Faber, who is Kraus' granddaughter. "My friends will sometimes say, 'Ew, you see old people naked,' but the response to that is that I just don't look at it." Far from a sexually-charged or awkward atmosphere, the mood of this 60-acre ranch is laid-back and non-judgmental, although being fully clad will earn you a few questioning glances.

The whole world has the wrong impression about nudists, Kraus says. "They have this fantasy that it's a free-for-all orgy pit," he says. "We are no more or less sexually active than anyone else."

Faber confirms the lack of a sexually-charged atmosphere. Although many people think men would have problems with getting erections in public, for example, Faber says it's rare. "It doesn't really happen because you're so relaxed," Faber says. "It's embarrassing if it does happen. Guys want to get rid of it as quickly as possible, so they cover it with a towel."

Faber, who occasionally works at the resort, says she is trying to organize a nudist club at NAU. "I talk to people on Facebook who go naked to the beach but would never think of going to a club," Faber says. Faber says she hikes and cooks naked. "It hurts if the grease pops," Faber says. "Some people I know have gone skydiving naked, but I refuse."

Nudists shed stress when they take off their clothes, says Caroline Hawkins, public relations coordinator for the American Association for Nude Recreation." You don't have the barrier of clothes restricting you," Hawkins says. "Nude recreation is not for everyone, but we're all about body acceptance. Not everyone here is a 10.

"People wearing tight dresses and expensive suits are judged on the way they're dressed, Hawkins says."Society judges on how people look, like if you have a designer suit. If you don't have clothes, there's nothing to judge," she explains.

The AANR has more than 50,000 members in the United States and Canada. Although AANR is affiliated with nudist resorts in both countries, each resort determines its own policies, Hawkins says.

While some retirees live full time at nudist communities, others residing in nudist resorts have regular day jobs where they wear clothes, Hawkins adds. AANR membership caters to those 35 and older, but the group does operate a college program and youth camps.

While some nudists stay in a specific area, others travel. Beverly Price owns and operates Arizona Wildflowers, a nudist adventure club based in Phoenix. "I've organized naked rafting trips through the Grand Canyon and Cataract Canyon in Utah, and houseboat trips on Lake Powell," says Price, who started the club with a friend more than 25 years ago. "We still have to wear life jackets," she adds.Price says she has been a nudist for 42 years.

"People's first reaction when they find out is curiosity," Price says. "I almost never get a shocked response."People of all ages participate in Arizona Wildflowers. The club has 12 regular members, though anyone can join trips, Price says.

"You are certainly expected to be a person of good character," says Price, who conducts background checks. "We don't want a pedophile around when there are kids involved. We protect ourselves.

"Young children are the easiest ones to get involved in nude recreation, Price says. "Kids are natural nudists. They have to be taught to wear clothing."Arizona Wildflowers occasionally visits other Western resorts, Price says."It's something you have to experience (for yourself)," Price adds. "Anything you're afraid to try is something you're missing out on without knowing whether you like it or dislike it."

"Rambler" Back in Slammer

This guy is just an unbalanced exhibitionist, and no hero to naturism...

12 April 2007

A TAXI driver got an eyeful when the Naked Rambler tried to hitch a ride in his cab.

Ex-marine Stephen Gough had just been cleared of breach of the peace at Edinburgh Sheriff Court when he asked Callum Watt to give him a lift to Saughton Prison.

The 47-year-old naturist, who has been convicted of exposing himself in public eight times, was rearrested moments later.

Watt, 44, from Edinburgh, told of his shock when Gough jogged up to his taxi while he was dropping off an elderly passenger in the Grassmarket around 5pm.

The cabbie said: "I actually recognised the guy straight away - facially. When I asked him where he kept his money, he didn't answer and again asked for a lift.

"I said if he had a pair of shorts then he could sit quite happily in my taxi but otherwise, no."

A crowd had gathered, with some taking pictures of Gough on their mobile phones.

A police van was parked nearby and Gough walked straight over and got in it.

Watt said: "I would have liked to talk with the chap.

"In five years I would say he is the strangest passenger that's ever tried to get in my taxi. It certainly brightened my day up."

Police said Gough was arrested, charged with breach of the peace and kept in custody.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Take Off Your Shoes (and Everything Else) and Relax

A recent survey conducted by a bathroom equipment company found that 46% of women regularly walk around the house in the nude. For men, the number is two thirds. The bad news is that one-third of all women surveyed have such serious body issues that they fear being naked with their partners. And 79% of women admit to being shy when in the locker room with other women.

Jill Parkinson, from, the company which commissioned the research, said: "It's shocking how self-conscious people are about being naked in front of their partners - especially when it comes to the bathroom. "This shows how seriously people think about their body image - yet being bare-skinned is such a natural thing."

Modern society has a long way to go in helping these women overcome their fear of their own bodies, but from my perspective this survey shows that more than half of all people are natural nudists, at least within their own homes.

If you have the opportunity, the next time you step out of the shower and dry off, don't put on clothes and spend as much time as possible in the nude. Try sleeping in the nude. When you get home from work, take off all your clothes and relax in front of the TV, or have dinner in the nude. This is how most nudists start out, just discovering the simple joy and freedom of nudity, and most who adopt this sensibility never go back to the textile world.

You don't have to go to a nudist resort to be a nudist - all it takes is removing your clothes and letting go a little.

Garden of Eden Located in Britain!

Naturists to flock to 'Garden of Eden'

2,500 will roam the EdenProject in the nude

One of the UK's biggest ever naturist events is to take place this summer at the Eden Project in Cornwall.The largest rainforest in captivity will throw open its doors to 2,500 naturists on the night of the summer solstice. The event, called 'The Garden of Eden', organised and hosted by 'Red Letter Days' with the support of the Eden Project, Visit Cornwall (the Cornish Tourist Board) and British Naturism is on Saturday, 23 June, 2007 from 7 to 11 p.m.

Nude guests will have the opportunity to experience the world's different climates, flowers and plants in the warm temperate biome or visit the 30-acre roofless biome under the Cornish sun, or wander around the newly opened Core, a building which reflects the 'miracles of nature'.

British Naturism is also planning a weekend of events close to the Eden Project, with accommodation arrangements to make it easy for as many people as possible to be in the area at the time. Plans include parties, music, sports and other activities and a day on the beach. A new website accompanies the event,, which will be launched soon.

The evening will include:· Exclusive entry for naturists to the world-class Eden Project, with the chance to access all areas of this magnificent site.

· Delicious and plentiful hot and cold buffet dinner of fresh, mainly locally sourced produce.

· Two drinks per person from a choice of wine, locally brewed beer and soft drinks.

· Fun and entertaining activities around the site, including face painting and other activities for children, as well as some great live music.

· Free guided tours of the site and Biomes.

· Goody bag to take home.

· Fantastic produce stalls and exhibitors.

· Free prize draw to win some mind-blowing Red Letter Day experiences.

· Free guarded bag storage on site.

Tickets can be bought from the Garden of Eden website or by calling Red Letter Days on 0845 600 7635.

Brit Wacko Gets Out of Jail

Once again, let me say: this guy is nuts...

Naked rambler cleared by sheriff

Stephen Gough was cleared of causing distress by the sheriff"Naked rambler" Stephen Gough has been cleared of causing a breach of the peace by refusing to cover up in a public car park.
Despite being convicted eight times, Sheriff Isobel Poole ruled that his latest case was not proven.

The ex-marine, from Eastleigh in Hampshire, admitted refusing to dress before being released into Saughton Prison car park in Edinburgh.

He successfully argued that his naked state had not distressed others.

I can understand this conduct could be considered unpleasant to passers-by had there been any
Sheriff Isobel Poole

Isobel Poole ruled that there was insufficient evidence to show that his state of undress had caused alarm to members of the public, therefore causing a breach of the peace.

She told Edinburgh Sheriff Court that in this case there was no evidence of "actual alarm or disturbance".

She added: "I can understand this conduct could be considered unpleasant to passers-by had there been any but there is a lack of evidence to that effect."

Fiscal Depute Naeema Sajid had argued unsuccessfully that because the Saughton car park was visited by a variety of people, including children, an offence had been committed.

Boots and rucksack

Gough is currently awaiting a High Court decision on his appeal against contempt of court convictions for refusing to cover up in the dock.

Last year the ex-marine was jailed for four months for stripping off in the toilet of a plane flying from Southampton to Edinburgh.

He has also been convicted of walking into Edinburgh Sheriff Court naked, appearing naked in the dock and of walking through Midlothian wearing only boots and a rucksack.

He first hit the headlines when he rambled from Land's End to John O'Groats in a bid to raise awareness of his belief that people should be allowed to appear in their natural state.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Da, Ve Are Nudists

Dress Code: Take It Off
Alastair Gee – The Moscow Times
April 10, 2007

MOSCOW, RUSSIA -- Nudism has nothing to do with sex, members of Moscow nudist group Telord wearily repeat.

But it seems that no one told group member Igor Nurmukhametov, who admits to nudist beach and banya flirtations going a bit further.

"If I see a woman on the street, I'll look at her butt, breasts, whether she's pleasant-looking. It's the same here," said the musician, 39, wearing a towel after skinny-dipping at a pool complex where everybody, including this reporter, shucked their clothes.

Forty people stripped at the recent three-hour Telord meeting, including the CEO of a mid-size firm, a scientist who makes candy building blocks, and two children -- though they all then donned sandals for hygiene reasons, and some women tottered about in heels and pink lipstick. Most were middle-aged or older, portly or with their ribs showing, some pendulous, others hirsute. None were gay, as homosexuals are banned.

Telord (www.naturism. ru) is Moscow's largest group of naturists -- a term usually used interchangeably with nudist. Other groups of naturists regularly rent out 10 Moscow banyas, each drawing up to 40 people at a time. In the summer, hundreds congregate on a traditional nudist beach at the Serebryany Bor recreation area, though it isn't very comfortable, as city authorities have planted their beach with pines.

Authorities take a dim view of their activities. Nudism is "a violation of social morals," said police spokesman Igor Bashev, adding that if nude people appeared in, say, the city center, it would upset tourists, women and children.

A Russian Orthodox Church spokesman pointed to scripture. "The first feeling to visit Adam and Eve after the Fall was the realization of their nakedness," said Father Mikhail Prokopenko, head of the Moscow Patriarchate' s press service. "A person naturally covers his body. And all in all, it's in the traditions of our people. Public nudity was considered a shameful occurrence."

Naturism was outlawed in the Soviet Union in the 1930s, and naturists only began practicing openly here in the late 1980s. Telord was registered in 1995 -- a Moscow Times report from that year said it was created after leader Sergei Mityushin was confronted by nude heavies at Serebryany Bor and ousted as leader of his previous club.

And another crisis is looming, said Mityushin. Like all NGOs, Telord has to register with the authorities. Mityushin despairs that he'll have to pay a bribe of about $800, and have difficulty convincing the government to support a bunch of naked people. Federal Registration Service press secretary Gennady Alibekov reassured, however, that every group had an equal right to be registered.

For now, members don't look very worried. A woman wearing only goggles whooped as she plunged down a waterslide.

In the sport center's tiny banya, both sexes cheerfully squashed up against each other, rows of pink thighs glistening with sweat. They did exercises said to expel bacteria from the nose and esophagus, unclenching their fists at nipple height and simultaneously snorting. "Not bad," a woman said, smiling to a friend.

According to Telord etiquette, if a man gets aroused, he should take a cold shower. A couple once caught having sex in the pool was ejected. And while members don't think their bodies are sinful, they can be dirty. Everybody spreads towels before sitting down.

"Although we have beautiful young people here, I've never thought I wanted to carry on with them beyond this place," said Alexander, 60, a stout businessman sprawled on a sofa who declined to give his surname. "We're above that here."

Mityushin ensures there's an even number of men and women, and if someone comes alone, he interviews them to ensure they're normal. Single men have to pay more. The main naturist organization in Britain, for example, does not have these rules.

Irina Selesnyova, 38, said she would shun any clearly gay or lesbian visitors.

"We have little kids here, normal families -- normal, standard families. A dad, a mom, a child," she said, supporting her breasts with her arms lest they become saggy.

As the session drew to a close, the naturists sat round a table contentedly munching sausages and cucumbers. Come New Year's and Women's Day, they play traditional games: Women do stripteases and sit on chairs covered with chocolates, and men try to move a box with a bottle dangling from their waists. They also slow dance, which is when the cold showers are required.

"We entered this world naked, and it's nothing sinful, nothing dirty," Nurmukhametov said.

"People look into your eyes more here," he added.


Saturday, April 07, 2007

How Many "Indoor Nudists" Are There?

It seems that items like this pass the wires a couple of times a month:

Singer MACY GRAY is a secret nudist and strips off when she's at home. The star claims she picked up the habit from her mother. Gray says, "My mother used to walk around the house naked. She used to cook naked. I got it from her."

So how many "strictly at home" nudists are there? I suspect many people started as Ms. Gray eventually "graduated" to social nudism, but that the vast majority do not. Some research, please?

For more on Macy Gray, click here.

Friday, April 06, 2007

The Body Image of the British Woman

This article appeared on a UK website. I have included some on the more interesting comments added by readers.

Too shy to strip in front of a man
By DUNCAN ROBERTSON - Last updated at 10:54am on 28th March 2007
Comments (29)

A third of women are too shy to take their clothes off in front of their partners

A third of women think they are too fat ever to appear naked in front of their partners, according to a survey.

Images of stick-thin models and digitally-slimmed celebrities are convincing a whole generation to keep their clothes on at all times.

Experts believe the compulsion to cover up is putting a serious strain on domestic relationships, with one woman in ten having to turn out the light before she can undress in front of her partner.

Some of the most awkward encounters happen in the bathroom - with nearly a quarter of females never entering with their other half.

Of those who do, around a third said they felt self-conscious about being seen in the nude. According to the survey of 3,500 women for a bathroom equipment company, one in ten is so body-shy she will even lock the bathroom door to avoid her partner bursting in.

Despite all this, almost all women interviewed agreed that it was vital that a couple felt comfortable naked together. Men seem largely immune to the insecurities afflicting their girlfriends and wives, and are happy spending almost double the amount of time being naked in an average day.

They are so fond of being naked that more than two-thirds said they regularly walk around the house with nothing on.

Even though 46 per cent of women confess they like to do the same, a third of these said they would never wander naked where their partner could see them.

It is the same in the gym, where 79 per cent admitted they had hang-ups showering and changing in front of other women.

Jill Parkinson, from, the company which commissioned the research, said: "It's shocking how self-conscious people are about being naked in front of their partners - especially when it comes to the bathroom.

"This shows how seriously people think about their body image - yet being bare-skinned is such a natural thing."


The majority of British women are fat. They're embarrased enough to hide - understandable - but still not motivated to stop eating and get fit. Why not? Is it because apologists and agony aunts in UK newspapers say being 'heavy' is OK or men really want full figured women? 99% of men want a healthy, fit, firm woman without an ounce of fat on her. Similarly 99% of women want men with washboard stomachs. Genarally there is no excuse for being fat because walking and running is free. In HK British women visually stand out from Aussies/N.Zealander s/Europeans because they're fat - great advertisment for the UK!

- Matt, Hong Kong

Hmm, not so helpful...many slapped Matt down.

Everybody should spend some time on a naturist beach. It could change how you feel about yourself and change your outlook on life. I do every chance I get.- Alan, Leeds

Now that seems helpful...

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Find Yourself if You Bare

Lose the clothes, find yourself

BRENDAN WORK – The Phoenix (Swarthmore College, PA)

April 5, 2007

SWARTHMORE, PA -- As spring emerges and flowers bloom, Swatties are shedding their winter clothes. But some, namely the Tri-Co Nudists, are shedding more than others. Now that the temperature permits, the recently-formed club has begun to walk the Crum Woods in the nude, and though their membership is short, their devotion is not.

“Nudism is about having fun and realizing you don’t need clothes to do that,” Tri-Co Nudists co-founder Eric Mulligan ’08 said. “There’s nothing wrong with nudity.”

But Mulligan and co-founder Gaby Kogut, Bryn Mawr ’09, face public stigma about their philosophies. Although they report a maximum of about 12 members, Mulligan and Kogut were the only two to attend the April 2 information session. While part of that may be attributable to lack of publicity and snacks (Kogut noted, “Nudists are people, too; they eat food,” and suggested free sushi at the next meeting) they acknowledged disappointment at the turnout.

“I was expecting at least a few people,” Mulligan said. “The stigma is a little bit stronger than I thought. Maybe people don’t understand what we do.”

And the Nudists’ purpose, they say, is neither body image advocacy nor ideological persuasion. Going on one-hour walks in the Crum, with occasional swimming, is something they describe very simply.

“Ultimately, it’s recreational,” Kogut said.

“There’s the potential for advocacy,” Mulligan said, “but that’s not our mission. We’re about doing, not talking.”

Mulligan admitted that the group’s bare-all attitude isn’t for everyone, but he didn’t foresee any problems cropping up between the Nudists and the college.

“We’re not worried about [legal repercussions] happening,” he said. “Usually when people see us, they walk away. They could complain, but frankly I think that would be just asinine.”

“Some people got scared and some just grinned at us,” Kogut explainee. “The funny thing is, people are going to be scared of a group more than a single person. We have the upper hand. We undo conditioning.”

That social conditioning, Kogut claims, is the root of the taboo so widely held toward the practice also known as naturism, which is more acceptable at the thousands of nude beaches and nudist communities Europe boasts than at the 65 nude beaches America has.

“Clothing makes it worse, because you have to worry about what you look like,” she said. “Fashion is about concealment. If you’re curvy, you have to look thin. If you’re short, you have to look tall. It’s all about looking the way you don’t look.”

But while an interest in the human body and its image introduced Kogut, an art history major, to nudism, Mulligan’s interest stemmed from a lifelong passion to be naked.

“I’ve been a closet nudist all my life,” he said. “I’ve always felt you shouldn’t need to cover anything up. I’ve been modeling for art classes for a while, but I had to wonder if anyone shared my opinion.”

Even as membership results currently lend towards ‘no,’ Mulligan is certain that Swarthmore remains an untapped community.

“If I found several people among my friends who were interested,” he theorized, “statistically speaking, there’s bound to be someone else here. I know you’re out there.”

Source: http://phoenix. swarthmore. edu/2007- 04-05/living/ 17161

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Desert Shadows is Purchased; Renovation Plans Cancelled

A terse announcement has appeared on the home page of Desert Shadows (Palm Springs), the flagship naturist resort of the west, indicating that DS has been purchased by an investment group and that the renovation plans for the resort have been canceled.

This story is still developing.

Bored with her briefs, the lawyer who gave it all up for naturism

Bored with her briefs, the lawyer who gave it all up for naturism

by LUKE SALKELD - More by this author » Last updated at 21:49pm on 3rd April 2007

As a high-flying investment banker, Samantha Taylor was the epitome of naked ambition.

The 27-year-old law graduate had a demanding but successful career with an international firm.

But after five years of the long hours culture, Mrs Taylor became bored with her briefs - legal and otherwise - and has quit her £35,000-a-year job to run a naturist resort.

Scroll down for more...

Sam and Mark Taylor

Banker Sam Taylor quit her high-flying job to run a naturist resort with her nudist husband Mark

Mrs Taylor and her husband Mark have bought a hotel on the Greek island of Kefalonia which is due to open this summer as the Vassaliki Naturist Club.

Yesterday Mrs Taylor said her parents and colleagues could barely believe her decision.

"I was happy with my job but Mark and I always fancied doing something abroad," she said.

"When he first suggested setting up a nudist resort I thought he was bonkers. I looked into it, though, and began to come around to the idea. We flew out to Greece and found a site and loved it.

"I was extremely nervous telling my family, friends and colleagues.

"Most nudists never have to tell anyone what they do but I had to tell the world and it came as a surprise to some people.

"My parents didn't know that I was a nudist until we came up with the business idea.

"But they actually found it very interesting and were very open-minded about it. They could see it was what we want to do and have been very supportive ever since."

Sam and Mark Taylor

The hotel complex in Kefalonia which they will turn into the Vassaliki Naturist Club

Mrs Taylor was introduced to the joys of naturism after she met chef Mark, 35, while she was studying law at the University of Kent.

She recalled: "Mark didn't tell me that he was a naturist for about two years. I had never had anything to do with naturism before and I was a bit shocked when he told me.

"After that quite often I would come home from work and he'd be preparing dinner in the buff."

To be supportive, she dipped her toe into the world of public nudity after taking her place on the J P Morgan graduate training scheme in Bournemouth.

Remembering her first tentative steps along the naturist beach at nearby Studland Point, she said: "I was a nervous wreck. I kept on my bikini bottoms to start with and went topless. But as I got more comfortable I took them off as well.

"Mark held my hand as we walked down the beach and I was surprised at how nice it was.

"I soon realised that nobody was interested or looking at me and I actually began to enjoy the experience."

Sam and Mark Taylor

Idyllic: Just another day in the Greek Islands

After they married in 2005 the couple, who own a two-bedroom bungalow in Ringwood, discussed moving abroad, and Mark then came up with the idea of running a naturist resort.

They flew to Greece to look at possible sites and fell in love with the site they are developing.

Mrs Taylor said: "It is a stunning resort with 11 apartments and a swimming pool and bar.

"We decided to go for it and sold our bungalow to cover the cost.

"In the first year we are expecting to break even but we hope word will get around and things will build from there."

Sam and Mark Taylor

Her husband is equally excited about their adventure.

He said: "I have been involved in nudism for many years but only at a beach level. People are usually very interested in it but are not really sure what it is about.

"We are already quite booked up for the coming months which is an excellent sign. I am very excited about it all, it really is our dream."