I’ve been looking at self-employment opportunities to pay my Christmas bills, which haven't got here yet, but will arrive with all the joy of a zombie apocalypse. There are all sorts of selfie-employee opportunities out there. You can stuff envelopes, sell timeshares, do phone sales (and in some cases actually sell phones), sell foreclosure information, etc. In all these diverse and mostly unbelievable offers, I found a common thread. They all seem to have a line somewhere in their brochures like this: “You can go to work in your underwear!”
Now that made me curious. Other than people who work in Las Vegas, is there a large segment of society who go to work only in their underwear? And is that a goal a civilized society should be working for?
I think going to work only in your underwear is a good example of casual Friday gone terribly wrong. Just the idea of seeing my former coworkers in their underwear is enough to give me the dancing heebie-jeebies. There’s a lot to be said for clothes. Particularly since they cover our flabby, pale, pimply, blemished, scarred, stretched, misshapen, and sometimes tattooed bodies.
Speaking of tattoos, they're not right for me. I can barely manage to date the same woman for more than six months at a time before her sweet, endearing little quirks make me want to push her down the stairs; do you think I want a picture of a flaming skull on my chest for the rest of my life? (Just in case, that’s too subtle: I don’t.) And don't get me started about that guy who had the entire New Testament tattooed on his body. There are certain places Bible verses should not be, and armpits are among them.
If you didn’t wear clothes to work, you’d have to fight about the thermostat setting all the time because your office would either be too cold or too hot for different people. You have to worry about sharp objects on your chair piercing your tender skin. And you might learn that hairy Ed in accounting wears Hello Kitty underpants, but did you really want to know that? I don’t think so.
Some of the work-at-home brochures don't mention underwear, of course. Those say you can work at home in your sweatpants and/or pajamas. Once again, there’s that idea that wearing clothes is a bad thing. Apparently the work-at-home people are all closet nudists. Remember that kid who always seemed to lose his swimsuit on camp-outs? He’s working at home now.
Admittedly, I’m not the person to ask about nudity. As has been pointed out more than once, I’m basically a prude. One friend once told me that he thought I had been born middle-aged. While there is some truth to that, I’d like to point out that, if I ever ran for President of the United States, the media would find little if anything racy to report and might be forced to focus on the real issues. Ha ha ha. Yeah, I laughed at the idea of a responsible media, too.
There are at least two nudist camps in Oklahoma. You might be wondering how I know that — yes, you were. When I worked as editor for the OSU newspaper, two or three reporters would come to me and want to do a story about the camps. I’d always agree, but they never turned in a story. The camps value their privacy and don’t allow interviews or photographers.
Being raised in the country, I know too much about ticks, chiggers, poison ivy, bees, hornets, rabid skunks, etc., to ever want to be naked outside. I think nudists are — and I hope I don’t offend any of my family, I really hope that — bonkers. But I’m a prude. And somewhat proud of it.
The other selling point of the brochures is the money. Money, money, money. They say you can make thousands of dollars a week by using their secrets. You can change your life for the better. You can own a fancy car, a huge house, and take fantastic vacations. And all they need from you is your credit card number and expiration date.
Oddly enough, they won’t let you use their secrets and then pay them. You have to pay them first. This seems to imply they don’t trust you, but who can blame them? It’s hard to trust someone who’s sitting around the house all day in their underwear.
Copyright 2011 by Stephen B. Bagley. Excerpted from Return of the Floozy. All rights reserved. No copying without express written permission from the author and publisher.
See you in the next hour!