When I was twenty-seven, I moved to a small town called Tuhita. It was a bohemian town filled with hedonists, long-haired hippies, nudists and socially awkward misfits. Now, I come from a conservative background, and so, this was a change of scenery. I stood in awe as I watched people walk around naked, smoke joints and dance to the rhythm of a street drummer. I marveled when I saw people pick up hookers while the police simply looked on. I was amazed at the potbellied policemen walking with beer cans in their hands.

“Freedom! Finally!” I said to myself and reveled with the locals. They accepted me as one of their own. I ate with them, got drunk with them, dropped acid with them, laughed, and farted boisterously with them. Soon, there was a celebration of weed on ‘Weed Day,’ and I smoked fine cannabis. That night I went home with not one but two women and I had the best sex of my life.

But, nothing good lasts, and things went sour when the Mayor announced, ‘Nude Day.’ Being very shy about taking off my clothes, I protested. I told them that I couldn’t walk around nude because I had weight issues and was very sensitive about how people perceived me. “Nobody will judge you; take it off man!” said a hippie. “Yeah! Do the full Monty mate!” said another.

Possessed with anxiety, I pleaded with them. “Don’t be a fucking fruit cake! You’re ruining the experience for all of us, bastard!” yelled a nude old woman. I was terrified. I took off my shirt and covered my nipples with my hands. “No hands on your tits, fucker!” yelled the old woman, “Now drop those fucking pants!”

“I’m sorry, but I can’t. All this is new to me,” I said, trembling.

“You’re a conservative fanatic!” The hippies shouted in unison.

I let out a shrill scream. “Please understand,” I sobbed.

“You come here, pretending to be one of us. We offer you our hospitality and love, and you repay it with hate. Now, take those clothes off before I have you stripped!” barked the Mayor.

“Yeah, this is about inclusiveness and respect. You’re showing disrespect to every nude person here, you know,” said the old woman.

By now, I was weeping uncontrollably. Two policemen came and stripped me. Everyone then rejoiced and loved Nude Day while I sat naked on a rock, unable to stop crying.

© Nitin Lalit Murali (2019)

Photo by Elijah O’Donnell on Unsplash

19 Replies to “Political correctness”

    1. It is Bojana. But here’s a twin truth: it’s equally hard not to belong and conform. So, which side are you on? That makes a lot of difference in our lives.

      1. That’s very true. We can only belong to ourselves. I no longer conform too. In fact I’m so against it that I post rants on Facebook berating people who do. People must think I’m a madman!

    1. Thank you so much my friend. I always cherish your comments. For some strange reason WP doesn’t allow me to access a few blogs using my phone, which I why, I always have to catch up later when it comes to blogs like yours.

      1. WP sometimes just does whatever comes to its mind. Sometimes it didn’t let me comment on blogs I follow, for no apparent reason.

        Since you mentioned writing with maturity, I think nobody does it better than you. And with amazing insight. This was a really great piece.

    1. We definitely aren’t. Each person comes with his/her strengths and weaknesses, and we all have different backgrounds and stories to tell. Individuality is the essence of being human. Thanks Ivor.

  1. “Yeah, this is about inclusiveness and respect. You’re showing disrespect to every nude person here, you know,”
    Yeah, geez Nitin. How dare you.
    Great piece!!

    (PS just as an aside, my “conservative” family had a beach house at a nudist beach that we spent all of our childhood holidays in. Actually, my parents bought it for a homeless friend to live in, long story…but the beach was beautiful, and so why not? Anyway, the beach was divided into the “clad” and “unclad” areas. We found early on that the “unclad” area was so crowded, we could have the rest of the beach almost to ourselves. But the thinking was that if you went in to the “unclad” area with clothes on then you were definitely a pervert!)

    1. That story made me laugh 😂 The ending especially. I’ve never been to a nude beach. We have a few in India but I’m not sure if they are still active under the current leadership. And my country is not safe for people who want to walk around nude! Horrible things happen to people who are well dressed. There was a time when this place was much more relaxed. But over the years, everything has changed. Thank you for your comment V

      1. It’s interesting to me about how things have changed.
        I read a book years ago, it was the biography of the people who started the ‘Lonely Planet’ travel books. But something in that book stuck out to me that is similar, that years ago there were so many countries they could travel through without issues, the women not having to worry about what they were wearing of if they were covered enough etc. It seems that kind of extremism has spread in recent decades?

      2. Yeah it has spread in the last two decades. It’s the growth of Fascism in places that’s changed everything. People are turning to the right wing and becoming jingoistic. National pride is making them make unnecessary rules and punish those who don’t follow them. India was always a conservative country but the state of affairs today is tragic.

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