So. You wake up in the morning; you blink your eyes and press the snooze button on the alarm clock. You walk to the bathroom, you do your morning cleanup routine, which may or may not include plucking a hair out of a mole, tweezing that unibrow, or squeezing a zit until it bleeds. You leave the bathroom, you go downstairs, you eat a bowl of cereal, say, Cheerios, or if you’re a hearty American, Cocoa Puffs with chocolate milk. You yell goodbye as the backdoor slams shut behind you, you mount your bike, you pedal, you get to school, you walk into homeroom a minute late because you took that extra minute to untangle your headphones, and everyone is staring. You think, yes, I’m late, I know already. They whisper and chuckle and Ms. Brown clears a throat a little but still keeps a wide-eyed librarian gaze on you. You look down.

Fuck. You’re naked.

A nightmare of that nature, like a drunken floozy in a locker room, is had by all in some form or another. Some realize when they get up to lecture. Some are at a wedding. Some of us just look down to see a snake in our crotches substituting our appropriate reproductive organs. Or whatever.

Why is the naked-in-public dream such a common human experience? It’s shame. Shame is an instinct. We don’t escape it. At the beginning of time the human species would cavort around with their bits hanging out. We have since evolved past that. Cover yourself, keep it under wraps, so on and so forth. So, while we are all covered in shame, all hail the strippers.

In a recent op-ed piece in the St Augustine Record, (and where the fuck is St. Augustine, pray tell? …You guessed it: Florida. ) one well-experienced woman responds to the potential threat of having an “adult entertainment zone” being built in the town. Moaning and groaning aside, why is Gloria Danvers, who, given, has been a part of the adult entertainment industry, so hellbent on not just opposing the “zone” but opposing all forms of adult entertainment?

Richard Roeper, of Ebert and Roeper I believe, agrees with the missus, equating the life of Jenna Jameson to the makings for a horror flick. Mainstream media, he continues, should have little, if anything at all, to do with the adult entertainment industry. It sends a mix message when mainstream media obsesses over a porn star like a singer or an actress. That being said, if one is to assume that many people turn to the porn industry due to abuse, perhaps our own societal views on sex are swathed in a deep seated shame, right next to our inability to process differing religious views and the words that come out of Janet Jackson’s (potentially) drugged up mouth. And let’s not forget that if the saturation of mainstream media and the obsession with singers and actresses could be equated to the amount of twinkies we consume, we’d all be suffering a massive, communal coronary.

Either way, from one industry insider to another, adult entertainment need not be a shameful, exploitive experience. In fact, given a clearly defined, government zoned “strip” mall, I think there could be greater opportunity to lessen the dangers coupled with the sex industry. I know shit happens, don’t get me wrong. If we could just regulate it a little better, eat more fiber, carry some Imodium, work it out, then the risks, the grime, and the shame could just flush right on out. And Roeper, your movie reviews bite ass, maybe you should work on that first. And just to be an ass and show that the adult biz does do some good other than supporting a healthy squirt or two, suck on this – strippers fighting crime.

So, although we might not be able to strip off our clothes in public and go at it on film, we all still have our own layers of shame to peel away. It’s not worth the effort to judge the actions of a select few who are comfortable with their own sexual proclivities. Get off the high horse. Or else ride it. To death.

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