This is not a post, this is a tribute. A tribute to YOU! Thank you for reading this, or for even taking the time to dare to click on a link from a site called “Strangely Naked.” That’s bold. Imagine if you die at your computer and forensic people have to check your browser history and they see bizarre posts you’ve visited at a URL with “Strangely Naked” in the title. Thank you for taking that chance. Wait, did I just persuade people to NOT visit this site? I mean, you can always read it in Incognito mode, right? Please don’t leave.
Life takes you many strange and wonderful places if you let it. In those journeys people come into your life and may have a massive impact that changes your perspective and you never see her/him again, or you’ll have a friend who drifts in and out of your life. You’ll meet interesting travelers on the fringe of society, and have conversations with accomplished sociopaths. Some will make you believe that an apocalypse would be a pleasant cleanse of a plague upon this world, while others will convince you that humanity is an exceptional gift capable of unspeakable beauty.
I’ve encountered a lot of perspectives through my time. Bikers, proto-hippies living in Japan, heroin addicts, drug dealers, transgendered people, conservative zealots who have called me “what’s wrong with America,” crafty people, animal people, lawyers, an MMA announcer, disabled, diseased, philosophers, a person who sleeps with a person who has a colostomy bag, a Jewish atheist, Muslims, marathoners, Christians, creeps, tech nerds, Luddites, Greek wrestlers, helicopter pilots, chefs, gluttons, wiener dog collectors, and all of you whose experiences and shared panorama of points of view help contribute to a nuanced worldview.
Your stories, your opinions, your art help make me a different person whether that be overtly, or just a subtle new wrinkle in the recesses of my brain, you have helped shape me. And for that, I am deeply appreciative. I assure you this isn’t meant to be a narcissistic brag, but a realization that this blog, as small and unfocused as it is, has brought me into contact with some truly exceptional people.
Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
The reason I’m thanking all of you is because I received something incredibly special in the mail this week all the way from Australia that rekindled my faith in humanity and reminded me that even connecting to people over the internet might be life-changing. Trish Ward from Boots and Brushes sent me, not one of her beautiful paintings, but two. Two gorgeous original paintings as a gift for my baby daughter (not to genderize her in our limited scope of an outdated binary). All of my general cynicism melted away and I am now pro-human. It was an astoundingly kind gesture from someone who only knows me through posts (scary) and comments (generally nice). Please support her and her incredible art. I now have three pieces of original art and they are all from Trish and they are all gorgeous.
The point is, thank you. Thank you for being interested, if only for the reciprocal clicks you get. Thank you for commenting, thank you for posting your stories, your anecdotes, your perspectives and ideas. Sometimes these ethereal connections can lead to emotionally staggering moments that will not just affect you, but help shape your child.