Monday, May 7, 2018
"Bathing" Suits vs. Swimsuits
I grew up referring to the clothes you wear to go swimming in as "bathing suits". But at a certain point in my life (and possibly inspired by Sports Illustrated), I made a conscious effort to retire that phrase, and use "swimsuits" instead. Because it's more accurate. You don't wear them to bathe in, you wear them to go swimming. And, as a nudist, I find the very concept of a "bathing suit" - something you wear while bathing (i.e., not in the pool, but the bath or shower) - offensive. I refuse to acknowledge it.
Granted, in a perfect world, there would be no such thing as swimsuits, either. People would swim naked, because that's what makes the most sense. But in this world, people do wear suits to swim in (unlike bathing, which most people - nudist or not - do naked). And I like to preserve the notion of "getting undressed" to go swimming; so I prefer swimsuits that look more like underwear than outerwear - e.g., briefs rather than shorts.
At the same time, I'm tickled by the idea of of swimsuits doubling as clothing, because I like the idea of wearing them even in contexts outside of swimming. (My fantasy is the beach resort town where everybody wears briefs and bikinis to go shopping, eat at restaurants, etc., because that's just the relaxed culture of the place). Why? Because they're skimpier than regular clothing, and I'll take any excuse to dress down in public. Obviously, adding coverage to make swimsuits more versatile completely defeats the purpose in my mind (although a sexy swim wrap that's at least partially see through is an acceptable compromise).
But people are always angling for trade-offs, because they don't want to be seen as being too permissive, too liberal, too hedonistic. It's this or that - you've gotta balance it out. You can never show too much skin. It's shorts or a crop top. Never both. But I wanna see as much skin as you're willing to show! The more the better. Is there something wrong with that? Does it make me a bad person? No. You wanna go shopping in a string bikini? You've just made my day.