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5.27.2012

FLESH, BONES AND A BIKINI

Bodies are very interesting to me.   I get amazed, and humored occasionally, at the vast and varied array of human bodies in the world.  That fact is bill boarded and highlighted at the beach much like the lights of Vegas showcase its gaudy and-the-topness.  Part of the fascination I have with humanity is our variances, our radical differences that take a sharp turn away from the stream of similarness we all share in other ways.  We are, for the most part to some degree anyway, born with a certain body type.  With a certain bone structure, a propensity to muscle tone or flab, exercise withstanding for the moment.  I could see both abuse and care in the human vessels laying about the sand.  I watched in utter fascination the parade of people today at the beach - this mixed bag of humans and how they displayed their bodies in beachwear.  You definitely see things in bathing suits that street clothes mask or draw
attention away from.  To be honest, I was both amazed and horrified at the physical freedom people seemed to exhibit.  Flesh is what it is - skin and flesh that God gives us to cover our organs.  It is there as His magical way of protecting our liver, our heart, our brain, our colon.  If you look at skin and flesh that way, the container or shape really doesn't matter, does it?  And yet, our culture is bombarded with images of what our containers need to look like.  I saw very, very few today that would fit the media standard of beauty.  What I did see was a great many very overweight people who seemed unabashed in their bodies.  Who didn't appear to be too awfully bothered with multiple fat rolls, large bellies, cellulite, or thighs that showed no daylight between the leg.  I saw a whole youth culture that even though they are young didn't have the bodies to wear bikinis.  It didn't stop them.  Similar to an eclipse, where you know you shouldn't stare at the sun, I found I just wanted to look.  There was something compelling, even hypnotizing about observing people's bodies and their choice of clothing based upon their body type.  What makes any of us think we look good in a certain style, color or cut of bathing suit?  I giggled at the thought of living in a culture where it is NOT acceptable to go out in our underwear or undergarments alone.  Yet, swim wear, some of which covers less than underpants and bra, are acceptable in public arenas during hot weather near bodies of natural or man-made water.  I was intrigued with bodies today.  I wondered what people thought of me at my age in what I had on.  Was I age appropriate in my clothing?  Better yet, was I body type appropriate in my choice of swim wear today?  I saw some flesh that I wished was a bit smaller and others that I wished were more covered up.  I saw not one European man in a speedo though.  I felt cheated.

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