Friday, October 31, 2008

Let's Strip

We come into the world as nature's art. Beautiful, no embarrassment comes with this nudity. Mom, dad, doctor, nurse immediately focus on the boy/girl area. Wham the first label is slapped on.

We're in such a hurry to label our sweet innocent bundles. Thank goodness for ultrasounds. Well you know it is nice to plan ahead. Pink or blue. Princesses or turtles. Can you find the turtle?

The label of boy or girl evolves into Norman or Priscilla. (My dad's name is Norman and I can't imagine calling a cute little baby Norman) I did have a boyfriend whose name was Tracy, he was definitely all boy. And Johnny Cash wrote of a boy named Sue. So, it just goes to show that labels are infinitely flawed.

Last weekend, sitting in the food court at the Mall of America I enjoyed one of my favorite pass times, "people watching". From the seemingly sound proof booth of my own mind, placing labels on each person as they pass, some solo, others with their significant other and moms and dads with their families. Of course I am not being obvious. What else am I suppose to do? Continuously stare at my food? Now that would have looked strange.

We desire labels and curse labels. I am so confused. One day popular, so yesterday the next.

This one women must have been following us around or maybe I just noticed her over others because she looked so stunning. I saw her at every store. She looked very sophisticated, long perfectly ironed brunette hair, yellow coat, perfectly executed makeup application, wearing high heeled boots. I imagined she had a workaholic husband bringing in loads of cash as she occupied her time taking this cash buying labels, covering her naked soul.

Now let's imagine, people watching, where everybody was stripped of labels. Let's not go as far as having everyone at the Mall of America walking around naked. Ok everyone is wearing a white sweat suits, no make up, no hair spray, no sun glasses, no jewelry. What would we look at? Well we could look at how everyone's butts look bad in white sweat pants, but before you see their butts, just maybe you would be more inclined to look into their eyes.

I had the opportunity to learn more about somebody at work this week. He revealed a part of his life that was so fascinating. He was on his lunch break, sitting in the cafeteria reading a book. Now I knew he was a honest hard working family man, but who would have known that by asking him, "is it a good book" that it would unveil his experiences as he traveled the world for a year, carrying all his belongings on his back. I will make a point to arrange more conversations with him in the future, which will be easy because I shared some books with him today. We will need to discuss them eventually. See, even "good" labels can blind us.

Let's strip ourselves and others of labels. Hey, the cold breezy fresh air, against our nakedness, will allow us to show others we are happy to see them. Work the pole ladies.

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