The Unz Review - Mobile
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
 TeasersiSteve Blog
"Students Still Sweat, They Just Don't Shower"
🔊 Listen RSS
Email This Page to Someone

 Remember My Information



=>

Bookmark Toggle AllToCAdd to LibraryRemove from Library • BShow CommentNext New CommentNext New Reply
Search Text Case Sensitive  Exact Words  Include Comments
List of Bookmarks

Commenter James Kabala pointed out this interesting NYT article from 19 years ago on a little discussed social change:

Students Still Sweat, They Just Don’t Shower
By DIRK JOHNSON
Published: April 22, 1996

WEST DUNDEE, Ill.— They might wear nose rings, shave their heads or sport tattoos on their who-knows-where. But among most American high school students these days, one thing is considered way too strange: showering with classmates after gym period.

“Standing around together naked?” said Andre Hennig, an 18-year-old senior at McHenry High School in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. “Oh no, man — people would feel really uncomfortable about that.”

In a striking measure of changed sensibilities in school and society, showering after physical education class, once an almost military ritual, has become virtually extinct. And the reasons seem as varied as insecurities about body image, heightened sexual awareness and a lack of time in a busy school schedule.

“You just cake on the deodorant,” said C. J. Glawe, a 16-year-old sophomore in a Crystal Lake South letter jacket, “and hope you’re not going to smell too bad.”

Students across the United States have abandoned school showers, and their attitudes seem to be much the same whether they live in inner-city high-rises, on suburban cul-de-sacs or in far-flung little towns in cornfield country.

“It’s just a new cultural thing,” said Judy Young, the executive director of the National Association for Sport and Physical Education, an organization of teachers and coaches. “They simply have a different routine than we did.”

To be sure, Ms. Young said, avoiding showers is not entirely new. Many people well into middle age can remember the trumped-up excuses or notes from home or the doctor that allowed them to escape the ritual.

A generation ago, when most schools mandated showers, a teacher would typically monitor students and hand out towels, making sure that proper hygiene was observed. …

Some people believe that children today simply grow up accustomed to more privacy. Years ago, when bigger families lived in smaller houses with fewer bathrooms and bedrooms, it was the rare child who could maintain a sense of modesty. …

“In 25 years of doing A.C.L.U. work — cases on prayer in the school, you name it — I had never had any response like this,” he said. “People remembered their own humiliation. I myself remember moving from my little country school to the city school, and being mortified about having to take showers. But in those days, you did what the schools said, you did what the teachers said.”

Mandatory showers and teachers on shower patrol are virtually a thing of the past now, and rinsing off after gym is the student’s option. In fact, some schools are considering removing showers because they are not used.

Modesty among young people today seems, in some ways, out of step in a culture that sells and celebrates the uncovered body in advertisements, on television and in movies.

But some health and physical education experts contend that many students withdraw precisely because of the overload of erotic images — so many perfectly toned bodies cannot help but leave ordinary mortals feeling a bit inadequate. …

“The No. 1 reason for taking steroids, as cited by these boys, is body image,” Dr. Bernhardt said.

Insecurities about body shape play a big role in the reluctance to shower at schools, judging from interviews with about two dozen young people at a shopping mall here recently. …

For Chris Oelhafen, who graduated from St. Edward’s High School in Elgin, Ill., two years ago, being overweight meant taking a lot of abuse. …

It also seems that a heightened awareness of sexuality, including the more open discussion in high schools today about homosexuality, has left many students fretting. Concern about the presence of gay students was mentioned several times as a reason not to shower.

“You never know who’s looking at you,” said Vicki Johnson, an 18-year-old from Algonquin, Ill.

This was a really good article. All it was missing was some perspective on what came before the mid-20th Century mandatory public showering era. Was it always like that, or was mass nudity in the interests of hygiene a modern invention (or re-invention)? Perhaps it was part of the Progressive push to make the public healthier, such as for war, which involved a general War on Privacy?

My vague impression is that Europeans went through long historical up and down cycles involving public bathing in the nude, with the Greeks and Romans loving it, the medievals being moderate about it, and early moderns getting dirtier and dirtier, until there was a fairly sharp push toward cleaning up the masses around or before WWI when modern plumbing made warm water cheap all of a sudden.

Okay, here’s Wikipedia on the history of the shower:

The reinvention of reliable indoor plumbing around 1850[10] allowed free-standing showers to be connected to a running water source, supplying a renewable flow of water.

Modern showers were installed in the barracks of the French army in the 1870s as an economic hygiene measure, under the guidance of François Merry Delabost, a French doctor and inventor.[11][12] As surgeon-general at Bonne Nouvelle prison in Rouen, Delabost had previously replaced individual baths with mandatory communal showers for use by prisoners, arguing that they were more economical and hygienic.[13] The French system of communal showers was adopted by other armies, the first being that of Prussia in 1879, and by prisons in other jurisdictions. They were also adopted by boarding schools, before being installed in public bathhouses. The first shower in a public bathhouse was in 1887 in Vienna, Austria. In France, public bathhouses and showers were established by Charles Cazalet, firstly in Bordeaux in 1893 and then in Paris in 1899.[14]

So, it sounds like the makings of a Foucault book: the Shower as instrument of oppression of the powerless — prisoners, conscripts, bums, and rich boarding school boys — molding them into Modern Mass Man.

In general, since the invention of antibiotics at the end of WWII, people and houses have been getting a little dirtier. John Derbyshire had a good article on the fanatical cleanliness practiced by nurses of the pre-antibiotics age, when that was the only defense against sudden death by infection.

 
Hide 169 CommentsLeave a Comment
Commenters to Ignore...to FollowEndorsed Only
Trim Comments?
  1. Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don’t have to go through the day smelling other people’s stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Gato de la Biblioteca
    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn't even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.
    , @carol
    In Missoula's old YMCA building the women's dressing room had one or two toilets sitting out in the open...god that grossed me out.
    , @Marty
    No doors on the stalls was also true at San Francisco's premier public high school when I got there in '73. Couldn't believe it, never used 'em.
    , @The Anti-Gnostic
    At one point in the 1970s, Lenox Square Mall in Atlanta removed the stall doors because so many gay men were using the restrooms for sex.

    I remember my summer camp had a communal bathhouse with the shower heads and six toilets lined up across from each other. Ho. Lee. Crap. But I recall we just grinned and bore it. Now there are cabins. I have to say I value our modern fastidiousness.
    , @Ian
    I went to elementary and middle school in the late 80's and 90's in Detroit, and we had bathroom stalls with no doors on them. I generally avoided using them, but every once in a while, I had no choice. I remember one time being at the school after hours waiting for my ride and really having to go. I held out for as long as possible until I could no longer. I figured that I should be safe since there were hardly any people left in the building at that point. So I went, only to have the janitor come in, walk right by the stall I was in, and then turn to me and say, "hello". I was mortified.

    I graduated high school in 2000. We were required to take communal showers there after gym class. I remember feeling awkward about it the first day of freshman year, but after a couple times, it quickly seemed normal. My vague impression (to use one of Steve's favorite phrases) was that it was similar with the other boys. We would typically joke around (and sometimes even sing) while showering.

    I also played for city travel hockey teams growing up. Up until about age 15-16, everyone waited till he got home to shower. At age 16-18 though, I and most of my teammates (though not all) would use the locker room showers, some of which were communal, depending on the arena.

    However, from this thread, it seems like my experience was not the norm for someone from my age.

    , @Romanian
    Homeschooling as in deferring having children and limiting their numbers or at least your career options and income? Not a good thing for the kind of people who are actually capable of homeschooling, let alone the nation.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  2. When I was a kid (early ’70′s), there were public communal showers on the beach at Virginia Beach (sex segregated, of course). As I recall, they were essentially big tents (but these are memories from a 6 year old, over 45 years ago, so they may be wrong). We’d spend the day at the beach, go into the public shower, shower, then drive home late into the night. I was extremely self conscious, but I don’t think my parents were uncomfortable.

    joeyjoe

    Read More
    • Replies: @PenskeFile
    Lot's of beaches have showers to rinse off, but you're supposed to leave your swimsuit on! Are you saying that people showered together in the nude?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  3. A certain Miss Fox, the wizened and presumably lesbian head gym teacher at Hinsdale Junior High School, due west of Chicago, was locally famous in the mid-Seventies for standing sentry outside the girls’ showers there and running her index finger down the girls’ bodies to make sure they’d dried themselves adequately after bathing. My sister found it creepy, unsurprisingly, as did the other girls. The parents knew about it and as far as I know did nothing.

    Different times, I guess.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mike Zwick
    I went to another West Suburban Chicago Area high school where the male gym teacher, and wrestling coach (not Hastert), would make kids do push ups in the nude in front of him if he determined that they were goofing off in the shower. All the other gym teachers would sneak off to the teacher's lounge after class but this teacher would wander around in the locker room.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  4. Fascinating subject (really!) I remember post-gym showering as mandatory from fourth grade (1968) onwards. It came with the cruel comments all boys from that pre-anti-bullying generation surely remember. Today there’s no telling what schools could be sued for (including psychological traumas latent until thirty years later).

    So that’s my theory. I know there’ll be a lot of them, some surely more interesting!

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    I remember being stunned in junior high when we found out the boys were not given towels until AFTER they'd showered, as they exited. We girls picked up towels as we came into the gym from our activity. We went to our lockers, took off our outer garments and bra, and kept on our panties, trying the whole while to keep the towel somehow swathed around us as we undressed. Once in the showers, most of us simply turned one shoulder, then the other to the water so as to pick up some drops, then stuck out our hands to cup some water and splash a bit on our backs. We weren't soaping or showering at all . All through junior high and high school this counted as the gym teacher checked us off as we exited.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  5. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    So, it sounds like the makings of a Foucault book: the Shower as instrument of oppression of prisoners, conscripts, bums, and boarding school boys, molding them into Modern Mass Man.

    Foucault gets a bad rap, but I thought Discipline and Punish was very interesting. If I recall correctly, he does go into some of the history of French towns dealing with plagues and epidemics with state power and quarantines, which sort of relates to your comment.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Right, I've only skimmed one or two Foucault books, but they provide one useful perspective on things like the rise and fall of mandatory public showering.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  6. Communal showers, bathrooms without stalls, large troughs where you lined up to urinate: Every day business in the service and even as a civilian 50 years ago. Sounds odd that anyone would be traumatized by that. But I guess it’s a different world.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  7. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    You can see this generational divide at gyms and health clubs today. The really old guys in their 70s and stuff seem to have no problem being and walking around naked in the locker room. While the younger guys either don’t shower or change in the locker rooms and just do it at home, or wear shorts, robes, or towels and avoid being naked out in the open.

    I always just assumed it was because the old guys just didn’t care because they’re so old, but I guess it must be a generational thing.

    Read More
    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    You were definitely taught in those days that nakedness was no big deal, when the occasion called for it. I mean, sure, casting back in my memory I can remember being a little intimidated the first time I went to Kezar stadium in the '60's having to urinate in these huge troughs with 50 adults who had consumed massive quantities of beer. But it was something you were supposed to just slough off, same as taking a shower, getting rectal exams in the service, etc.

    I remember reading somewhere that LBJ liked to drag guys into the White House bathroom and discuss policy with them when he was on the throne. All the East Coast elitist types would be horrified, but LBJ was just messing with their minds.
    , @Anonymous
    It's still like this in mainland China among both the young and old. It's also accurate to say the older people here are slightly more prone to locker room nudist displays, though -- a fact I wish I could erase from my mind. Very little self-awareness here when it comes to nudity (or most other behavior, for that matter).
    , @WGG
    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other. Mainly unspoken, all it takes is to be naked and to meet eyes with a willing participant and the game is afoot. I would think that fact would make a straight man want to cover up so he won't mistakenly catch someone's eye then quickly become an unwilling participant to something untoward.

    Read Craigslist "missed connections" in any city.
    , @Psmith
    http://theoatmeal.com/pl/minor_differences2/locker_room
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  8. @Anonymous

    So, it sounds like the makings of a Foucault book: the Shower as instrument of oppression of prisoners, conscripts, bums, and boarding school boys, molding them into Modern Mass Man.
     
    Foucault gets a bad rap, but I thought Discipline and Punish was very interesting. If I recall correctly, he does go into some of the history of French towns dealing with plagues and epidemics with state power and quarantines, which sort of relates to your comment.

    Right, I’ve only skimmed one or two Foucault books, but they provide one useful perspective on things like the rise and fall of mandatory public showering.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  9. I once read that the push for school showers was a product of the Cold War. The theory was that one impediment to getting draftees acclimated to military life was their having to occasionally be naked around a bunch of other guys in the course of barracks life.

    But I’m not sure how that would have worked its way from the Pentagon into something as granular as school locker room design and time allocation.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    A lot of things happened in the year 1917 to make daily life in America more modern.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  10. @Anonymous
    You can see this generational divide at gyms and health clubs today. The really old guys in their 70s and stuff seem to have no problem being and walking around naked in the locker room. While the younger guys either don't shower or change in the locker rooms and just do it at home, or wear shorts, robes, or towels and avoid being naked out in the open.

    I always just assumed it was because the old guys just didn't care because they're so old, but I guess it must be a generational thing.

    You were definitely taught in those days that nakedness was no big deal, when the occasion called for it. I mean, sure, casting back in my memory I can remember being a little intimidated the first time I went to Kezar stadium in the ’60′s having to urinate in these huge troughs with 50 adults who had consumed massive quantities of beer. But it was something you were supposed to just slough off, same as taking a shower, getting rectal exams in the service, etc.

    I remember reading somewhere that LBJ liked to drag guys into the White House bathroom and discuss policy with them when he was on the throne. All the East Coast elitist types would be horrified, but LBJ was just messing with their minds.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Urinating in huge troughs with 50 men in San Francisco? Hmm......

    Regarding LBJ's peculiar dominance displays:

    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2002/nov/07/the-big-guy/

    If so, it was only a very occasional and loose leash. He early became fabled for a Rabelaisian earthiness, urinating in the parking lot of the House Office Building as the urge took him; if a colleague came into a Capitol bathroom as he was finishing at the urinal there, he would sometimes swing around still holding his member, which he liked to call “Jumbo,” hooting once, “Have you ever seen anything as big as this?,” and shaking it in almost a brandishing manner as he began discoursing about some pending legislation. At the same time, he would oblige aides to take dictation standing in the door of his office bathroom while he went about emptying his bowels, as if in some alpha-male ritual assertion of his primacy. Even on the floors of the House and Senate, he would extravagantly rummage away at his groin, sometimes reaching his hand through a pocket and leaning with half-lifted leg for more thorough access.
     
    , @Marty
    Did you dump your drink on Brodie?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  11. @Darwin's Sh-tlist
    I once read that the push for school showers was a product of the Cold War. The theory was that one impediment to getting draftees acclimated to military life was their having to occasionally be naked around a bunch of other guys in the course of barracks life.

    But I'm not sure how that would have worked its way from the Pentagon into something as granular as school locker room design and time allocation.

    A lot of things happened in the year 1917 to make daily life in America more modern.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar


    A lot of things happened in the year 1917 to make daily life in America more modern.

     

    Like an American franchise winning the Stanley Cup for the first time.
    , @syonredux
    The cult of physical fitness can also be linked to military concerns.Cf , for example, British anxiety during the Second Boer War about the large numbers of men who were "unfit for service." All kinds of stuff was printed about national degeneracy, etc.And it's right around that time that the "physical culture" movement really started to get off the ground.

    Interestingly, H.G. Wells' "The Land Ironclads" (1903), which is set in a vaguely Boer War-like conflict, seems to have been partially written as a rejoinder to all this talk about the need for robust manliness.The tale depicts land ironclads (essentially proto-tanks) easily defeating armies composed of rough and tough outdoorsmen:

    "Manhood versus Machinery" occurred to him as a suitable headline. Journalism curdles all one's mind to phrases.

    He strolled as near the lined-up prisoners as the sentinels seemed disposed to permit and surveyed them and compared their sturdy proportions with those of their lightly built captors.

    "Smart degenerates," he muttered. "Anæmic cockneydom"

    The surrendered officers came quite close to him presently, and he could hear the colonel's high-pitched tenor. The poor gentleman had spent three years of arduous toil upon the best material in the world perfecting that shooting from the saddle charge, and he was mourning with phrases of blasphemy, natural under the circumstances what one could be expected to do against this suitably consigned ironmongery.

    "Guns," said some one.

    "Big guns they can walk round. You can't shift big guns to keep pace with them and little guns in the open they rush. I saw 'em rushed. You might do a surprise now and then—assassinate the brutes, perhaps——"

    "You might make things like 'em."

    "What? More ironmongery? Us?...."

    "I'll call my article," meditated the war correspondent, "'Mankind versus Ironmongery,' and quote the old boy at the beginning."

    And he was much too good a journalist to spoil his contrast by remarking that the half-dozen comparatively slender young men in blue pajamas who were standing about their victorious land ironclad, drinking coffee and eating biscuits, had also in their eyes and carriage something not altogether degraded below the level of a man.
     
    http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0604041h.html
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  12. This went on in my middle school. As far as I’m concerned, it was the most stressful thing I went through as an awkward 6th grader. This was on the mid 90s.

    The gym teacher didn’t really give us a choice. But by the time we got to high school, the idea of showering was non starter.

    Read More
    • Replies: @anon
    Opposite experience of what I had in Texas in the late 90's.

    No one showered in middle school. In hs, basically every male participant on a sports team showered. Heat and humidity made it a necessity. Apparently the girls sports and dance teams didn't use the showers, even though they had individual ones with curtains!

    People in regular PE didn't shower, but it wasn't strenuous at all. They may not have even had the time. Marching band counted as a PE substitute and they didn't shower. But they practiced after school and the band room/marching area was on the opposite side of campus from the showers.
    , @Wilkey
    I remember getting only a B or C in junior high phys ed (late 80s) for not showering everyday. I simply couldn't stand the barracks-style showers that fit 15 kids at a time. Not that my grade would have been any better if it were based on actual, ya know, physical fitness.

    But when jhs gym moved to the swimming pool I was fine with it, though - partly because you had to shower to get the damn chlorine smell off you, partly because the showers only fit 5-6 kids at a time.

    But kids were harassed about their bodies. One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed "millimeter peter" by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn't far off the true measurement.

    By high school showers weren't expected or required, and I don't think any kid in my 9th grade gym class showered, though it may have had as much to do with the fact that it was the second-to-last class of the day. Same for 10th grade gym, when it was the final class of the day.

    In college our dorms had communal showers that fit four, and I never much cared that I had to shower with three other guys.

    What I've found personally is that a sense of modesty waxes and wanes based on need and situation. At my regular gym, which has separate showers, I keep pretty well covered up. Some of the other gyms I occasionally use have communal showers, and I use them without much thought or concern. If modesty is an option, then many people will choose modesty. If the option isn't available, then you do what you gotta do. And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys. And it's also important to remember that teenagers are extremely self-conscious about their bodies.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  13. SCOTUS just turned recorded human history on its head by ruling that Feels are the supreme law of the land and this is what you come up with?

    Unz must be cracking that whip about what alternative discourse is acceptable.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  14. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @SPMoore8
    You were definitely taught in those days that nakedness was no big deal, when the occasion called for it. I mean, sure, casting back in my memory I can remember being a little intimidated the first time I went to Kezar stadium in the '60's having to urinate in these huge troughs with 50 adults who had consumed massive quantities of beer. But it was something you were supposed to just slough off, same as taking a shower, getting rectal exams in the service, etc.

    I remember reading somewhere that LBJ liked to drag guys into the White House bathroom and discuss policy with them when he was on the throne. All the East Coast elitist types would be horrified, but LBJ was just messing with their minds.

    Urinating in huge troughs with 50 men in San Francisco? Hmm……

    Regarding LBJ’s peculiar dominance displays:

    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2002/nov/07/the-big-guy/

    If so, it was only a very occasional and loose leash. He early became fabled for a Rabelaisian earthiness, urinating in the parking lot of the House Office Building as the urge took him; if a colleague came into a Capitol bathroom as he was finishing at the urinal there, he would sometimes swing around still holding his member, which he liked to call “Jumbo,” hooting once, “Have you ever seen anything as big as this?,” and shaking it in almost a brandishing manner as he began discoursing about some pending legislation. At the same time, he would oblige aides to take dictation standing in the door of his office bathroom while he went about emptying his bowels, as if in some alpha-male ritual assertion of his primacy. Even on the floors of the House and Senate, he would extravagantly rummage away at his groin, sometimes reaching his hand through a pocket and leaning with half-lifted leg for more thorough access.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    Is Jimmy Carter the only normal person the Dems sent to the White House in the past 62 years?

    Smug, yes, and smarmy, but normal.

    , @SPMoore8
    Thanks for looking that up. Except that it isn't really "alpha dominance" -- it's just a kind of vulgarity that he knew would freak out the East Coast types. If his aide had walked into the bathroom and peed in the sink while LBJ was reaching for the toilet paper, he would have thought it was hilarious. And he would have considered that guy his blood brother.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  15. I bet a lot high-school gym teachers are happy to see the showers go. People have become very cognizant of the legal risks involved in dealing with other people’s children – afraid that they’ll be accused of being a pervert. Who needs the hassle?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  16. The movie 42 features a scene (apparently based on a real incident) in which a teammate encourages Jackie Robinson to end his habit of showering alone (which he does for fear of disturbing the white players). There is no hint that the white players have any dislike of showering with each other – and yet the scene (starts at 0:48, following another famous real-life scene of male bonding) is still filtered through modern “This isn’t gay, is it?” sensibilities:

    (I should add that I personally could not imagine a group shower. My college actually had a group shower in one of the bathrooms in my dorm that was famously never used – everyone used the individual showers located on the other side of the floor. But is remarkable how sharply views on this subject have changed.)

    Off topic: What happened to the kind of accent that Red Barber had? It sounds so different from a modern Southern accent or even from the way most other Southerners of that era talked.

    Read More
    • Replies: @WhatEvvs
    "is still filtered through modern “This isn’t gay, is it?” sensibilities:"

    Which is one of the reasons I hate American movies. Apart from the fact that most (well, virtually all) the movies suck, "this isn't gay" permeates them. Not to mention, gay references permeate most online criticism. Anytime you have more than one lad in a scene, there is going to be an obligatory "this isn't gay" in the movie, and a "this is gay" in some online twerp's review. I exaggerate, but only slightly.

    I just saw a wonderful Indian movie called "3 Idiots" that had so much touchy-feely between men it could never be remade in Hollywood. I'm glad of that because Hollywood would only fuck it up royally.

    Face it, this country is totally pornified and totally homosexualized. So Blowhard & Auster were right after all.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  17. e says:
    @International Jew
    Fascinating subject (really!) I remember post-gym showering as mandatory from fourth grade (1968) onwards. It came with the cruel comments all boys from that pre-anti-bullying generation surely remember. Today there's no telling what schools could be sued for (including psychological traumas latent until thirty years later).

    So that's my theory. I know there'll be a lot of them, some surely more interesting!

    I remember being stunned in junior high when we found out the boys were not given towels until AFTER they’d showered, as they exited. We girls picked up towels as we came into the gym from our activity. We went to our lockers, took off our outer garments and bra, and kept on our panties, trying the whole while to keep the towel somehow swathed around us as we undressed. Once in the showers, most of us simply turned one shoulder, then the other to the water so as to pick up some drops, then stuck out our hands to cup some water and splash a bit on our backs. We weren’t soaping or showering at all . All through junior high and high school this counted as the gym teacher checked us off as we exited.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  18. With all the strides for gay pride and sexual liberation Americans have a lot of puritanical homophobic hangups. Guys are so obsessed with having to prove that they are 100% hetero that being around male nudity is their worst fear and is automatically equated with homosexuality. There is also a lot of paranoia about homosexual gym coaches. Nudity really isn’t as big of deal in other parts of the world.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "With all the strides for gay pride and sexual liberation Americans have a lot of puritanical homophobic hangups. Guys are so obsessed with having to prove that they are 100% hetero that being around male nudity is their worst fear and is automatically equated with homosexuality. There is also a lot of paranoia about homosexual gym coaches. Nudity really isn’t as big of deal in other parts of the world."

    Italian men are so secure in our Heterosexuality that in Italy a man can greet another man with a kiss on the cheek and not feel like a Homosexual for doing it. Men in Italy make up for it by catcalling sexy women on the streets. And catcalling women is the ultimate act of male Heterosexuality. So the same Italian guy who greeted his close male friend, brother, grandfather, or father with a kiss on the cheek, an hour later later is whistling at women passing by and telling them how drop dead gorgeous they are.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  19. Another benefit of diversity:

    Showering alone.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  20. In general, since the invention of antibiotics at the end of WWII, people and houses have been getting a little dirtier. John Derbyshire had a good article on the fanatical cleanliness practiced by nurses of the pre-antibiotics age, when that was the only defense against sudden death by infection.

    My grandpa was always carrying on about infections. I never understood it until I learned that antibiotics weren’t invented until well after he reached adulthood, and his fears were not just senile paranoia.

    But public showering is a little different. We still had them when I was a kid in the 80s, but things suddenly changed in the 90s. That’s also when mass circumcision started to go out of fashion. Connection? Wouldn’t surprise me. Not for the Jewish angle, but because there was a growing sense of “otherness” in institutions, whether for racial, sexual, religious or whatever reason, and it started to feel weird to take your clothes off around these people. There was definitely a gay issue where I lived, but I lived in the gayest neighborhood in the Pacific NW as a youth, so I don’t really know what was going on in the ‘burbs.

    I seem to remember hearing a bit on NPR about twenty years ago about the disappearance of Jewish bathhouses sometime last century. One in Chicago in particular was mentioned, and at one point according to the narrator it apparently featured a glistening Jesse Jackson making his case to an audience of old Eastern European Jews fully in the nude. Sounded kind of barbaric to my tender American ears, but now I know about the “banya” and it’s still alive and well in Europe east of the old Iron Curtain.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  21. Iran has an interesting policy regarding gays. The government apparently subsidizes and encourages sex change operations for gays as “gender confirmation surgery”:

    http://dailycaller.com/2015/06/26/state-department-officially-calls-irans-forced-sex-change-surgeries-confirmation/

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    ISIS has other ideas.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/06/isis-celebrates-lovewins-by-tossing-4-gays-from-roof-of-building/


    Some other site that I can't find right now showed ISIS tweets mocking Kennedy's words in his majority decision.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  22. @Steve Sailer
    A lot of things happened in the year 1917 to make daily life in America more modern.

    A lot of things happened in the year 1917 to make daily life in America more modern.

    Like an American franchise winning the Stanley Cup for the first time.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  23. @Anonymous
    Urinating in huge troughs with 50 men in San Francisco? Hmm......

    Regarding LBJ's peculiar dominance displays:

    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2002/nov/07/the-big-guy/

    If so, it was only a very occasional and loose leash. He early became fabled for a Rabelaisian earthiness, urinating in the parking lot of the House Office Building as the urge took him; if a colleague came into a Capitol bathroom as he was finishing at the urinal there, he would sometimes swing around still holding his member, which he liked to call “Jumbo,” hooting once, “Have you ever seen anything as big as this?,” and shaking it in almost a brandishing manner as he began discoursing about some pending legislation. At the same time, he would oblige aides to take dictation standing in the door of his office bathroom while he went about emptying his bowels, as if in some alpha-male ritual assertion of his primacy. Even on the floors of the House and Senate, he would extravagantly rummage away at his groin, sometimes reaching his hand through a pocket and leaning with half-lifted leg for more thorough access.
     

    Is Jimmy Carter the only normal person the Dems sent to the White House in the past 62 years?

    Smug, yes, and smarmy, but normal.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Carter was never smug and smarmy. He was earnest. It's just that nobody is earnest these days, so people who are genuinely earnest, like Carter, are assumed to be smug, smarmy, or just trolling or being ironic.
    , @Anonymous
    Pretty much. But I don't think LBJ's peculiar habits were that bad or strange. They're perfectly normal for a good country boy from Texas. Just harmless locker room stuff between men. What Clinton did in the Oval Office was out of line: http://www.thesmokinggun.com/buster/bill-clinton/lewinsky-tossed-salad-657901
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  24. It’s too bad shared showers in schools aren’t a thing anymore because there is potentially a lot of opportunity for mischievous high school guys to have fun claiming they identify as women and demanding to shower with the girls.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Vendetta
    Anyone who tried would be ostracized as by girls and guys alike as a creep (which pretty much also doubles as an acceptable substitute for faggot now). So at least there's that.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  25. america was more like scandanavia in many ways, at least prior to the civil rights era. In scandanavia, nudity is still fairly common. There is a much greater sense of community there than here, more community there than there ever was here. But still america was more like scandanavia and less like it now.

    if you google it, you can find stories of how male american students had to swim nude communally up until about the 1960s. Back then it was not uncommon for schools, especially junior high and high schools, to have large swimming pools, especially in the south, and especially in texas. Anyway, they made all the boys strip down and go swimming in the nude during the PE class.

    That went away in the 1960s. With diversity comes distrust and a more puritanical attitude.
    Take for example young girls with older boys. Even in the 1970s it was not uncommon for 14 and 15 year old girls to take up with 18 and 19 year old boys. Many of them got married.

    Nowadays if that comes to light, the boy will be called a pedophile.

    Diversity kills community trust.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Subversive
    The Pedophile sex offender hystety and stigma towards nudity is a product of America being a low trust society. Teens are over sexualized but if men mention finding teen girls attracted they are demonized andvdeviants and criminals.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  26. Peter Meyer [AKA "Peter Fagan"] says:

    Per Wikipedia, the YMCA used to allow/encourage/require men to swim nude up until the 1960s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nude_swimming#Indoor_pools

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess? But of course people were much less squeamish in those days. Foucault also wrote (to reiterate slumber_j) that less aggressive forms of pedophilia, and adolescent sexuality generally, were a minor concern in pre-modern times. So the village pervert showed his penis to an 11 year old girl…what’s the big deal? Not until the rise of psychiatry and the asylum was this considered a pathology and a grave crime. And Foucault semi-advocated for the decriminalization of sexual relations between minors and adults:

    https://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/danger.htm

    Foucault and his line of thought were influential in the 70s, in Europe and elsewhere (and still today, amongst social scientists). Child pornography was legal in, e.g., progressive Sweden:

    http://www.icenews.is/2009/01/29/child-pornography-in-swedish-national-library/

    Just an example of how quickly and violently fads can reverse themselves. The present is fleeting, the future uncertain. The past is another country.

    Read More
    • Replies: @PatrickH
    Yes. Remarkably enough, the most infamous of raging feminists, Andrea Dworkin (d. 2005), supported the legalization of sexual relations between children and adults. She was only dissuaded from doing so by the now less infamous but equally raging feminist Mary Daly (d. 2010), who said no, no, this messes children up dreadfully and with lasting consequences; the evidence is coming in now that it's not so taboo to talk about it.

    I suspect we're all lucky as a society that Daly was so fierce in her objections, because if the legalization of child sex had become part of feminist doctrine it would have become entrenched there, indefinitely.

    And no, I cannot find the original source of this exchange anywhere online or off it. I know that at one point I was able to do so, but have since lost track of it.

    , @dcite
    It'd be a big deal to the child, I guarantee it. No matter what the era. Adult sexual bodies are weird and terrifying to children, at worst. At best they are repulsive. Just possibly, if they've grown up with nudity in the family (not sexual) they may be comfortable with it. But perverts might take it the wrong way, the foul intent of the pervert dumps mess on even a healthy child's attitude. I'm talking child/adult, either sex.

    So no, I don't think these things were ever taken lightly. Diaries from long ago record instances of childhood trauma and indignities, just as they do today on some social media. People were just more fatalistic. Life in general was more difficult in most ways.
    , @Melendwyr

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess?
     
    Or more precisely, they made it next to impossible to detect the symptoms of various STDs that, prior to the chlorination of water, could be transmitted quite easily in a swimming pool. I've read that one of the duties of swim coaches was to visually examine students, discreetly, for any signs of an infection that might put other pool-users at risk.

    Of course, I rather suspect that this quite reasonable policy was ideal for homosexual pedophiles, too. Greater awareness of homosexuality likely was at least partially responsible for the abandonment of group swimming, combined with common chlorination.

    [edit] I still remember being surprised when browsing through some old high-school yearbooks owned by my uncle and aunt and coming across photos of the swim team, buck naked. I presume increases in body insecurity, as well as fears of pornographic interest, put a stop to that. Competition spectators were fully co-ed. I find it difficult to imagine being comfortable with that, but it seems to have been accepted at the time.

    , @Jim Don Bob
    I took swimming lessons at the YMCA in the 60 and we did it in the nude. I thought it was a bit weird, and the diving board could be a problem, but I had no choice.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  27. anon • Disclaimer says:
    @maynard
    This went on in my middle school. As far as I'm concerned, it was the most stressful thing I went through as an awkward 6th grader. This was on the mid 90s.

    The gym teacher didn't really give us a choice. But by the time we got to high school, the idea of showering was non starter.

    Opposite experience of what I had in Texas in the late 90′s.

    No one showered in middle school. In hs, basically every male participant on a sports team showered. Heat and humidity made it a necessity. Apparently the girls sports and dance teams didn’t use the showers, even though they had individual ones with curtains!

    People in regular PE didn’t shower, but it wasn’t strenuous at all. They may not have even had the time. Marching band counted as a PE substitute and they didn’t shower. But they practiced after school and the band room/marching area was on the opposite side of campus from the showers.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  28. @Anonymous
    Urinating in huge troughs with 50 men in San Francisco? Hmm......

    Regarding LBJ's peculiar dominance displays:

    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2002/nov/07/the-big-guy/

    If so, it was only a very occasional and loose leash. He early became fabled for a Rabelaisian earthiness, urinating in the parking lot of the House Office Building as the urge took him; if a colleague came into a Capitol bathroom as he was finishing at the urinal there, he would sometimes swing around still holding his member, which he liked to call “Jumbo,” hooting once, “Have you ever seen anything as big as this?,” and shaking it in almost a brandishing manner as he began discoursing about some pending legislation. At the same time, he would oblige aides to take dictation standing in the door of his office bathroom while he went about emptying his bowels, as if in some alpha-male ritual assertion of his primacy. Even on the floors of the House and Senate, he would extravagantly rummage away at his groin, sometimes reaching his hand through a pocket and leaning with half-lifted leg for more thorough access.
     

    Thanks for looking that up. Except that it isn’t really “alpha dominance” — it’s just a kind of vulgarity that he knew would freak out the East Coast types. If his aide had walked into the bathroom and peed in the sink while LBJ was reaching for the toilet paper, he would have thought it was hilarious. And he would have considered that guy his blood brother.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    You're right that LBJ wouldn't care, but what does that have to do with his behavior and dominance displays? If you've ever been around socially dominant men, this sort of behavior around underlings shouldn't be surprising. They'll aggressively flout certain social conventions and graces as a way of dominating the situation and forcing others to acquiesce and adapt themselves.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  29. Save water. Double up in the shower. A guy in Houston had so much oil that when he went swimming he just floated to the top. Now we have more floaters and less water. You have to dig a hole to fill a hole. Dig?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  30. One final remark – I read a review a couple years ago of the (already forgotten) Carrie remake, which apparently (like the original) began in a post-P.E. high school group shower, and there were comments below earnestly debating the issue of “Why are there always group showers after gym class in high school movies? Does this ever happen in real life?” So the old ways are not only gone but forgotten among millennials.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  31. Dahlia says:

    I went to the same old junior high (c. 1990) that my mother had gone to (c. 1969) and the gym still had the showers, but nobody used them. This bothered our coaches who tried in the beginning to get us to use them and made sure time was alloted, but nope. Way too modest for that! I even remember during an especially hot spell, a bunch of us looked longingly at them, saying amongst ourselves, “Wouldn’t it be nice…”.
    Finally, two girls who were the most daring and couldn’t take the smelly sweat anymore, took the plunge and showered in there alone. I can still remember the wet hair they emerged with. We were amazed! What was it like? Oh, it’s not bad at all! Funny, they kept doing it, but the rest of us still couldn’t muster up the courage. My mother thought we were so silly.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  32. @Reg Cæsar
    Is Jimmy Carter the only normal person the Dems sent to the White House in the past 62 years?

    Smug, yes, and smarmy, but normal.

    Carter was never smug and smarmy. He was earnest. It’s just that nobody is earnest these days, so people who are genuinely earnest, like Carter, are assumed to be smug, smarmy, or just trolling or being ironic.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  33. @leftist conservative
    america was more like scandanavia in many ways, at least prior to the civil rights era. In scandanavia, nudity is still fairly common. There is a much greater sense of community there than here, more community there than there ever was here. But still america was more like scandanavia and less like it now.

    if you google it, you can find stories of how male american students had to swim nude communally up until about the 1960s. Back then it was not uncommon for schools, especially junior high and high schools, to have large swimming pools, especially in the south, and especially in texas. Anyway, they made all the boys strip down and go swimming in the nude during the PE class.

    That went away in the 1960s. With diversity comes distrust and a more puritanical attitude.
    Take for example young girls with older boys. Even in the 1970s it was not uncommon for 14 and 15 year old girls to take up with 18 and 19 year old boys. Many of them got married.

    Nowadays if that comes to light, the boy will be called a pedophile.

    Diversity kills community trust.

    The Pedophile sex offender hystety and stigma towards nudity is a product of America being a low trust society. Teens are over sexualized but if men mention finding teen girls attracted they are demonized andvdeviants and criminals.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  34. @Reg Cæsar
    Is Jimmy Carter the only normal person the Dems sent to the White House in the past 62 years?

    Smug, yes, and smarmy, but normal.

    Pretty much. But I don’t think LBJ’s peculiar habits were that bad or strange. They’re perfectly normal for a good country boy from Texas. Just harmless locker room stuff between men. What Clinton did in the Oval Office was out of line: http://www.thesmokinggun.com/buster/bill-clinton/lewinsky-tossed-salad-657901

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  35. ANNIE: Well, didn’t you take, uh … uh, a shower at the club?

    ALVY: Me? No, no, no, ’cause I never shower in a public place.

    ANNIE (Laughing): Why not?

    ALVY: ‘Cause I don’t like to get naked in front of another man, you know-it’s, uh …

    ANNIE (Laughing): Oh, I see, I see.

    ALVY: You know, I don’t like to show my body to a man of my gender–

    ANNIE: Yeah. Oh, yeah. Yeah, I see. I guess-

    ALVY: –’cause, uh, you never know what’s
    gonna happen.

    ANNIE (Sipping her wine and laughing): Fifteen years, huh?

    (The Woody Allen character, Alvy, had told her he’d been in analysis for 15 years.)

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  36. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    When I went to high school in the early 60s, the jocks took showers after gym class and the non-athletes did not. The athletes seemed perfectly comfortable as they conversed and joked around while in the communal shower.

    I thought that this was the custom only in my school, until I saw an episode of Judd Apatow’s series “Freaks and Geeks.” In this episode, one of the “geek” students challenges the unwritten rule that only jocks can take a shower after gym class. For his punishment the athletes eject him, naked, out into the high-school corridor, where he has to dodge the students exiting the classrooms during the change of classes.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  37. @Formerly CARealist
    Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don't have to go through the day smelling other people's stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn’t even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ben tillman

    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn’t even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.
     
    You were responding to a comment about toilets.
    , @antipater_1
    No Icepick - he is not talking about shower stalls. He is talking about shitting stalls. In old WWII type military barracks for example, you had to shit out in the open in front of everyone.
    , @Anonymous
    You misread it - he meant no doors on the toilet stalls, not showers. That's what my HS had too.

    But the girls had curtained shower stalls in the 70's and 80's in both my Atlanta schools.

    Both in HS and college, the men's showers were a just big fat post with 5 sets of plumbing pointing radially outward. Multiple posts in one common shower room.

    Nobody cared, nobody stared.

    It's really depressing America has gotten even more neurotic about body issues since then.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  38. I was born in 1985 and thus attended schools with physical education (and extracurricular competitive sports) from 1990-2004.

    No time was ever allotted to shower for physical education (I think in high school it was, but competitive athletes didn’t go to gym class in my high school) so it never occurred to us.

    For competitive sports facilities and time were available. A few boys did shower, but most of us did not.

    I think the main reason was fear of being thought gay. Sexual insecurity is strong in adolescents, and we thought it was incredibly gay to see other men naked. At this stage in our cultural (d)evolution gay propaganda was still at a dull roar, but we were all aware of the existence of gays.

    Teenage boys being teenage boys, we considered being gay a really bad thing. “Gay” was a stock insult and a stock way to disparage not just people but items and experiences. I never lost this habit, and to this day I use gay as a term of disparagement in casual conversation. Today I told a colleague that Verizon is gay for prohibiting unauthorized handsets on its network.

    I date younger women, and while I don’t look much older than them the change in mentality with just a ten year age difference is stunning. They are ALWAYS offended when I pronounce things and people I dislike as gay.

    The only thing I’ll add beyond the gay thing is children are not concerned with hygiene, and without the haunting fear of disease that existed in earlier times adults can’t be bothered hounding other people’s kids to take a shower.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Gato de la Biblioteca
    They are ALWAYS offended when I pronounce things and people I dislike as gay.

    Watch Fast Times at Ridgemont High with 'em, and see how they react to Spicoli saying, "Those guys are fags!" And then the guy interviewing says something like, "That's great, Jeff...."
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  39. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous
    You can see this generational divide at gyms and health clubs today. The really old guys in their 70s and stuff seem to have no problem being and walking around naked in the locker room. While the younger guys either don't shower or change in the locker rooms and just do it at home, or wear shorts, robes, or towels and avoid being naked out in the open.

    I always just assumed it was because the old guys just didn't care because they're so old, but I guess it must be a generational thing.

    It’s still like this in mainland China among both the young and old. It’s also accurate to say the older people here are slightly more prone to locker room nudist displays, though — a fact I wish I could erase from my mind. Very little self-awareness here when it comes to nudity (or most other behavior, for that matter).

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  40. I remember one semester when I had PE the period before break — it was great to be able to take a longer shower.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  41. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @SPMoore8
    Thanks for looking that up. Except that it isn't really "alpha dominance" -- it's just a kind of vulgarity that he knew would freak out the East Coast types. If his aide had walked into the bathroom and peed in the sink while LBJ was reaching for the toilet paper, he would have thought it was hilarious. And he would have considered that guy his blood brother.

    You’re right that LBJ wouldn’t care, but what does that have to do with his behavior and dominance displays? If you’ve ever been around socially dominant men, this sort of behavior around underlings shouldn’t be surprising. They’ll aggressively flout certain social conventions and graces as a way of dominating the situation and forcing others to acquiesce and adapt themselves.

    Read More
    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    I just don't see it as a dominance/ submission thing. Sometimes men are crude for laughs, and sometimes men are crude to shock. "Socially dominant" men are more likely to enjoy shock behavior, but I personally don't shock easily and have never felt that I was "being forced to acquiesce." I just never saw it that way.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  42. @Thorfinnsson
    I was born in 1985 and thus attended schools with physical education (and extracurricular competitive sports) from 1990-2004.

    No time was ever allotted to shower for physical education (I think in high school it was, but competitive athletes didn't go to gym class in my high school) so it never occurred to us.

    For competitive sports facilities and time were available. A few boys did shower, but most of us did not.

    I think the main reason was fear of being thought gay. Sexual insecurity is strong in adolescents, and we thought it was incredibly gay to see other men naked. At this stage in our cultural (d)evolution gay propaganda was still at a dull roar, but we were all aware of the existence of gays.

    Teenage boys being teenage boys, we considered being gay a really bad thing. "Gay" was a stock insult and a stock way to disparage not just people but items and experiences. I never lost this habit, and to this day I use gay as a term of disparagement in casual conversation. Today I told a colleague that Verizon is gay for prohibiting unauthorized handsets on its network.

    I date younger women, and while I don't look much older than them the change in mentality with just a ten year age difference is stunning. They are ALWAYS offended when I pronounce things and people I dislike as gay.

    The only thing I'll add beyond the gay thing is children are not concerned with hygiene, and without the haunting fear of disease that existed in earlier times adults can't be bothered hounding other people's kids to take a shower.

    They are ALWAYS offended when I pronounce things and people I dislike as gay.

    Watch Fast Times at Ridgemont High with ‘em, and see how they react to Spicoli saying, “Those guys are fags!” And then the guy interviewing says something like, “That’s great, Jeff….”

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  43. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Nudity with your peers is less of a problem when you’re all close to the same body shape (no one is morbidly obese) and skin color. It starts making people indulge in ‘thought crime’ when you start to wonder why everyone is so different from you when they’re naked, thus nudity is no longer PC.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  44. @Mr. Subversive
    With all the strides for gay pride and sexual liberation Americans have a lot of puritanical homophobic hangups. Guys are so obsessed with having to prove that they are 100% hetero that being around male nudity is their worst fear and is automatically equated with homosexuality. There is also a lot of paranoia about homosexual gym coaches. Nudity really isn't as big of deal in other parts of the world.

    “With all the strides for gay pride and sexual liberation Americans have a lot of puritanical homophobic hangups. Guys are so obsessed with having to prove that they are 100% hetero that being around male nudity is their worst fear and is automatically equated with homosexuality. There is also a lot of paranoia about homosexual gym coaches. Nudity really isn’t as big of deal in other parts of the world.”

    Italian men are so secure in our Heterosexuality that in Italy a man can greet another man with a kiss on the cheek and not feel like a Homosexual for doing it. Men in Italy make up for it by catcalling sexy women on the streets. And catcalling women is the ultimate act of male Heterosexuality. So the same Italian guy who greeted his close male friend, brother, grandfather, or father with a kiss on the cheek, an hour later later is whistling at women passing by and telling them how drop dead gorgeous they are.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ivvenalis
    I've been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  45. @maynard
    This went on in my middle school. As far as I'm concerned, it was the most stressful thing I went through as an awkward 6th grader. This was on the mid 90s.

    The gym teacher didn't really give us a choice. But by the time we got to high school, the idea of showering was non starter.

    I remember getting only a B or C in junior high phys ed (late 80s) for not showering everyday. I simply couldn’t stand the barracks-style showers that fit 15 kids at a time. Not that my grade would have been any better if it were based on actual, ya know, physical fitness.

    But when jhs gym moved to the swimming pool I was fine with it, though – partly because you had to shower to get the damn chlorine smell off you, partly because the showers only fit 5-6 kids at a time.

    But kids were harassed about their bodies. One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed “millimeter peter” by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn’t far off the true measurement.

    By high school showers weren’t expected or required, and I don’t think any kid in my 9th grade gym class showered, though it may have had as much to do with the fact that it was the second-to-last class of the day. Same for 10th grade gym, when it was the final class of the day.

    In college our dorms had communal showers that fit four, and I never much cared that I had to shower with three other guys.

    What I’ve found personally is that a sense of modesty waxes and wanes based on need and situation. At my regular gym, which has separate showers, I keep pretty well covered up. Some of the other gyms I occasionally use have communal showers, and I use them without much thought or concern. If modesty is an option, then many people will choose modesty. If the option isn’t available, then you do what you gotta do. And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys. And it’s also important to remember that teenagers are extremely self-conscious about their bodies.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Are you Peter Wilkey? I think I remember you from phys ed.
    , @Kevin O'Keeffe
    "One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed 'millimeter peter' by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn’t far off the true measurement."

    Let's try to keep a good thought here. Perhaps he was a grower, rather than a shower?

    , @Harry Baldwin
    And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys.

    As an older man myself, I've found that you eventually arrive at the Age Of Not Giving A Shit, and that applies to more situations than group showering.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  46. @Anonymous
    You're right that LBJ wouldn't care, but what does that have to do with his behavior and dominance displays? If you've ever been around socially dominant men, this sort of behavior around underlings shouldn't be surprising. They'll aggressively flout certain social conventions and graces as a way of dominating the situation and forcing others to acquiesce and adapt themselves.

    I just don’t see it as a dominance/ submission thing. Sometimes men are crude for laughs, and sometimes men are crude to shock. “Socially dominant” men are more likely to enjoy shock behavior, but I personally don’t shock easily and have never felt that I was “being forced to acquiesce.” I just never saw it that way.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Socially dominant men like LBJ don't do it consciously. They do it naturally. And you're right that socially dominant men do that sort of thing for laughs and shock value. It also helps in assessing and testing underlings and other people. People are very shocked and flustered might be easy to push around; those not shocked might be more trustworthy with certain tasks.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  47. No wonder all high schools seem to have the faint stench of ball sweat in the halls.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Wilkey
    Never noticed - but then I'm not intimately acquainted with the smell of ball sweat, so I guess we'll have to take your word for it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  48. @Wilkey
    I remember getting only a B or C in junior high phys ed (late 80s) for not showering everyday. I simply couldn't stand the barracks-style showers that fit 15 kids at a time. Not that my grade would have been any better if it were based on actual, ya know, physical fitness.

    But when jhs gym moved to the swimming pool I was fine with it, though - partly because you had to shower to get the damn chlorine smell off you, partly because the showers only fit 5-6 kids at a time.

    But kids were harassed about their bodies. One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed "millimeter peter" by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn't far off the true measurement.

    By high school showers weren't expected or required, and I don't think any kid in my 9th grade gym class showered, though it may have had as much to do with the fact that it was the second-to-last class of the day. Same for 10th grade gym, when it was the final class of the day.

    In college our dorms had communal showers that fit four, and I never much cared that I had to shower with three other guys.

    What I've found personally is that a sense of modesty waxes and wanes based on need and situation. At my regular gym, which has separate showers, I keep pretty well covered up. Some of the other gyms I occasionally use have communal showers, and I use them without much thought or concern. If modesty is an option, then many people will choose modesty. If the option isn't available, then you do what you gotta do. And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys. And it's also important to remember that teenagers are extremely self-conscious about their bodies.

    Are you Peter Wilkey? I think I remember you from phys ed.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  49. @Anonymous
    No wonder all high schools seem to have the faint stench of ball sweat in the halls.

    Never noticed – but then I’m not intimately acquainted with the smell of ball sweat, so I guess we’ll have to take your word for it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  50. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Steve, you’ve got to remember that before the advent of modern methods of rapidly heating large quantities of water – which are in fact of no great age – showering and bathing in cold nations was literally a painful experience.
    Indeed, running water and municipal drains only really date back to Victorian times, no older than the advent of steam engines powerful enough to pump thousands of gallons of water.
    Yes, the Romans had aqueducts, but in reality they were limited to such regions as where gravity could be made to work to the Romans’ benefit.
    Anyhow, I doubt that gym showers big enough with enough heat and water power to wash a whole class full of adolescents existed prior to 1900 or so.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  51. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @SPMoore8
    I just don't see it as a dominance/ submission thing. Sometimes men are crude for laughs, and sometimes men are crude to shock. "Socially dominant" men are more likely to enjoy shock behavior, but I personally don't shock easily and have never felt that I was "being forced to acquiesce." I just never saw it that way.

    Socially dominant men like LBJ don’t do it consciously. They do it naturally. And you’re right that socially dominant men do that sort of thing for laughs and shock value. It also helps in assessing and testing underlings and other people. People are very shocked and flustered might be easy to push around; those not shocked might be more trustworthy with certain tasks.

    Read More
    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    I totally agree with your final formulation. I had a boss once decades ago who always made a point of using the n-word within 5 minutes of meeting someone. He judged you by your reaction. Most people hemmed and hawed and didn't call him on it. If you called him on it and you were strident, you lost. If you were diplomatic about it, you were in.

    Bathroom/sexual/obscene humor or displays are very common among men (as I know you know). In the service or business world, how you react says something about you: if it makes you too uncomfortable, then you will be regarded as uptight, and maybe too rigid in your self-estimation. If you go with the flow, and even top it, you are gold.

    Interestingly, I have seen a lot of that in both the service and in business, but I spent ten years in academia and I never, ever saw it. But then academy types have terrible senses of humor, largely because they are incapable of being irreverent.
    , @dcite
    LBJ was a psychopath. Seriously. Even Bill Moyers said, surrpetitiously, that there was something wrong with him, and nobody would believe the truth.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  52. I was in jr high/high school from 1978-84, and we did group showers, and thought little about it. I hadn’t even realized something like this would drop out of favor!

    I can confirm that the Japanese are not too worried about group nudity. Mrs Calvinist and I both like hot springs, so on our trips to Japan we always try to visit some. Many are sex-segregated, and once you’re past the locker room door, it’s nudity all the way. Everybody first needs to shower thoroughly, usually in a big open bathroom, and then not a stitch of clothing is allowed in the bathing areas, which remain single-sex. A very tall white man like me gets a few odd looks, but I’ve never had too much trouble. Having said that, there are supposed to be places that don’t allow foreigners, I guess since seeing them in such circumstances would be considered too much for the usual customers to deal with.

    The initially-disconcerting thing about these places is that the locker room attendants, even on the men’s side, are often older women, so you’d better be prepared.

    There are also co-ed places, but they require swimsuits to be worn.

    China has plenty of hot springs as well, but they tend to be co-ed, again with swimsuits, although in the single-sex locker rooms there are no attempts to hide nudity.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous

    A very tall white man like me gets a few odd looks, but I’ve never had too much trouble.
     
    In the land of the Jap, the one-inch man is king.
    , @Chrisnonymous
    This is changing. Younger generations don't like public baths so much, and many are starting to prefer showers over baths in general. Public nudity or semi-nudity has a long history in Japan. There are some schools that still preserve strange rituals like forcing boys to swim in the ocean in fundoshi, or traditional underwear.

    As more foreigners and immigrants are brought into the country, I expect many of these traditions will start disappearing.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  53. I graduated high school in upstate NY in1982. We had communal showers in our locker room. There were rumors that one day we’d have to take a group shower and the gym teacher would hand you a towel as you exited but I don’t remember ever having to go through that. It was rumored that at least one of our gym/swim teachers was a lesbian- she was an old “Miss”, had short hair, and had a butterfly tattoo on her back, which was super unusual back then. I definitely wasn’t on board with a group shower at that age. I didn’t have any body issues since I was thin, like nearly everyone back then, but I was a shy girl, and it seemed weird and an overreach for the school to mandate a shower for us. There’s a lot of stuff schools did back then that I am glad is no longer allowed, like allowing fights on the playground and other physical bullying that teachers/admins turned a blind eye to.

    Read More
    • Replies: @TWS
    Human boys fight. It's as natural as breathing. When you try to have zero tolerance for 'horseplay', 'rough housing' and 'fighting' and replace it with chemicals you mess up boys for life. We've evolved to knock each other around as boys and adolescents and adults used to fight too.

    It's cathartic.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  54. WGG [AKA "World\'s Greatest Grandson"] says:
    @Anonymous
    You can see this generational divide at gyms and health clubs today. The really old guys in their 70s and stuff seem to have no problem being and walking around naked in the locker room. While the younger guys either don't shower or change in the locker rooms and just do it at home, or wear shorts, robes, or towels and avoid being naked out in the open.

    I always just assumed it was because the old guys just didn't care because they're so old, but I guess it must be a generational thing.

    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other. Mainly unspoken, all it takes is to be naked and to meet eyes with a willing participant and the game is afoot. I would think that fact would make a straight man want to cover up so he won’t mistakenly catch someone’s eye then quickly become an unwilling participant to something untoward.

    Read Craigslist “missed connections” in any city.

    Read More
    • Replies: @syonredux

    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other.
     
    I'm assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.
    , @Anonymous


    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now.

     

    what the...

    Got a link for that?
    , @e
    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other.

    If this is true, why would young males be pro gays? If it's true, am I to assume young straight males in gyms are simply cowering wimps?

    I'd like some proof of this.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  55. As I recall, there was never enough time to do anything in gym class. This was back in the 60′s. We had to go to our regular locker, get our gym bag, go to locker room, change to gym outfit. Then do some half assed sports activity. Then, back to locker room, shower, dry off, dress, put stuff in gym bag, back to locker and then off to the next class.

    The coaches were never over WW 2. Even the young ones had to go through universal service. So they yelled a lot. We had to line up and call off our name.

    But, one of the big things was they had a pool. Swimming pools in Junior High! and, of course, High School. That was a big deal and considered a major advance. Never mind that they never taught swimming to those that didn’t know how. Plus, it was too much trouble and the coaches preferred other activities.

    Like every other damn thing in America, it started out as a ‘good idea’ … lets build good gyms for our kids. And give em a locker room. Just like real athletes. There was a certain logic to it. Did anyone ever think … ‘lets spend a lot of money and time to add another innovation to education to fuck up our kids?’ And, yea. At least half the innovations were idiotic.

    But back to the WW 2, Military attitudes. I always hated that shit, except when it seemed funny. But there was a sea change with Vietnam. All the pseudo, macho shit from WW 2 was openly disdained and no one would have anything to do with any sort of regimentation. Not to mention the fact that 90% + vets never made it to within a mile of a front line. Culturally, Vietnam was the conclusion of WW 2. It is hard to convey just how much prestige the military had after WW 2. It took them 20 years to piss it all away. The military and vets were very much behind any war. The often spoken notion, ‘we did it … don’t be a pussy’ was ubiquitous.

    And WW 2 … what a war!!! We went from a depression to max fiscal stimulus. Plus .. the main positive .. we bombed the shit out of all global competition. And we nuked the Japs. There were huge lags — it took most of the late 40′s to demobilize and convert from a war economy. They didn’t really start building skyscrapers until the mid 50′s or so. The Interstates didn’t get done until the 60′s. Same with building out suburbs.

    Anyway … Now I am uninterested in any sporting activity that can’t be done in casual clothing. It is amazing what can be done *without* buying all sorts of purpose designed outfits. It is one reason why it takes people their entire life to get around to using their lifetime gym memberships. It adds 1/2 hour to any exercise activity. It is part of the dysfunctional trend of having normal people believe that they need to emulate pros to participate in any sporting activity. Kids can toss around a football, shoot hoops, a little baseball, definitely ride a bicycle, etc without uniforms and shit. To conclude … every fucking ‘advance’ seemed like a good idea at the time. And WW 2 cast a huge shadow for a couple of decades. And people would be healthier if they didn’t have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn’t require huge amounts of gear.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    "And people would be healthier if they didn’t have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn’t require huge amounts of gear."

    Well said. I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  56. @Anonymous
    Socially dominant men like LBJ don't do it consciously. They do it naturally. And you're right that socially dominant men do that sort of thing for laughs and shock value. It also helps in assessing and testing underlings and other people. People are very shocked and flustered might be easy to push around; those not shocked might be more trustworthy with certain tasks.

    I totally agree with your final formulation. I had a boss once decades ago who always made a point of using the n-word within 5 minutes of meeting someone. He judged you by your reaction. Most people hemmed and hawed and didn’t call him on it. If you called him on it and you were strident, you lost. If you were diplomatic about it, you were in.

    Bathroom/sexual/obscene humor or displays are very common among men (as I know you know). In the service or business world, how you react says something about you: if it makes you too uncomfortable, then you will be regarded as uptight, and maybe too rigid in your self-estimation. If you go with the flow, and even top it, you are gold.

    Interestingly, I have seen a lot of that in both the service and in business, but I spent ten years in academia and I never, ever saw it. But then academy types have terrible senses of humor, largely because they are incapable of being irreverent.

    Read More
    • Replies: @SFG
    Goes without saying academic types have less testosterone, but they also have a Communist-level political correctness floating around.
    , @International Jew

    Bathroom/sexual/obscene humor or displays are very common among men (as I know you know). In the service or business world, how you react says something about you
     
    Seinfeld picked up on that in the bit about George and some good-ol-boy business partners who good-naturedly address one another as "you ol' bastard". Then George tries that and it goes over like a lead balloon.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zhaap42I2sc&feature=youtube_gdata_player
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  57. The opening shot in Disney’s Pollyanna is of a buck-naked boy on a tree swing swinging into a river filled with other naked young boys. No stunt double midgets either.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  58. Graduated in the late 2000′s. By then communal showers were the sort of thing you only heard about through movies and cartoons (unless you were on the football team).

    Coincidentally, football players were the people most likely to get their dicks out in social situations.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  59. @Jefferson
    "With all the strides for gay pride and sexual liberation Americans have a lot of puritanical homophobic hangups. Guys are so obsessed with having to prove that they are 100% hetero that being around male nudity is their worst fear and is automatically equated with homosexuality. There is also a lot of paranoia about homosexual gym coaches. Nudity really isn’t as big of deal in other parts of the world."

    Italian men are so secure in our Heterosexuality that in Italy a man can greet another man with a kiss on the cheek and not feel like a Homosexual for doing it. Men in Italy make up for it by catcalling sexy women on the streets. And catcalling women is the ultimate act of male Heterosexuality. So the same Italian guy who greeted his close male friend, brother, grandfather, or father with a kiss on the cheek, an hour later later is whistling at women passing by and telling them how drop dead gorgeous they are.

    I’ve been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "I’ve been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy."

    The late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia held hands with George W. Bush which would look really Gay to guys like you , but he was very much a Heterosexual man as he had over 23 wives. Having over 23 wives is the epitome of Heterosexuality. That means the guy really really enjoyed the company of women.

    Middle Eastern men and Mediterranean men have more sexual testosterone than Anglo Saxon Protestant men and Northern European men in general.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  60. The more confident, taller/stronger and above averagely equipped you are relative to your peers, the easier it is to do public nudity.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  61. Perhaps the more gay-celebrating a society becomes, the more normal straight men avoid anything that might be remotely considered gay?

    Read More
    • Replies: @jon

    Perhaps the more gay-celebrating a society becomes, the more normal straight men avoid anything that might be remotely considered gay?
     
    If my experiences living/traveling around East Asia are any indication, I definitely think this has something to do with it. In places like Korea and Japan, they basically don't even acknowledge that homosexuality is a thing. And I think that has something to do with how comfortable they are doing things that would seem really gay in America - bathing nude together, invading each other's personal space, large groups of only men hanging out in small rooms singing songs to each other ...
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  62. Can’t believe no one has commented on the fact that the author of this piece is named Dirk Johnson

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  63. @ivvenalis
    I've been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy.

    “I’ve been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy.”

    The late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia held hands with George W. Bush which would look really Gay to guys like you , but he was very much a Heterosexual man as he had over 23 wives. Having over 23 wives is the epitome of Heterosexuality. That means the guy really really enjoyed the company of women.

    Middle Eastern men and Mediterranean men have more sexual testosterone than Anglo Saxon Protestant men and Northern European men in general.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    "Middle Eastern men and Mediterranean men have more sexual testosterone than Anglo Saxon Protestant men and Northern European men in general."

    You seem to be unaware of sexual mores in Afghanistan. Yes Afghan men may have a lot of testosterone - and they expend a lot of it buggering boys, as ivvenalis mentioned.

    The west has the sexual customs and taboos that it has for good reasons.

    , @unpc downunder
    How does "sexual testosterone" differ from regular testosterone?

    It's personality and temperament, not testosterone. North Europeans men think about sex just as often but they are more introverted and less impulsive or hot headed. Thus being the strong, silent type is considered the masculine ideal in north European culture.

    This is one reason why contact sports tend to be more popular in Anglo countries and among upper class jocks in Latin countries - they require the discipline not to retaliate when you get hit in a heavy tackle.

    To a western male, Middle Eastern men are arrogant, narcissistic and emotionally unstable. Similarly, unless they can back up their swagger with looks, charm or real world achievements, western women will tend to see them as comical alpha male wannabes.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  64. Increasing diversity has an influence?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  65. Fenwick HS in Oak Park IL, then all boys college prep had nude gym swimming until the mid 80s. They all caught abuse from us for that.

    My frat, built in the early 70s had communal showers.

    The closest country club to mine as the crow flies is a.jewish club on a bit of almembership drive. They are allowing in gentiles for the first time. I would join except for I lack enough money but every Jewish club I have ever been to has the gin rummy clique in the locker room, old dudes sitting around naked playing cards for hours. But the course is great (Langford). So is the food (duh).

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  66. I could never take a communal shower because my penis is so small

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  67. My maternal grandmother was a teacher in the NYC public school system during the 1920s, and her first job in the system was as a health matron–teaching the unwashed immigrant children how to bathe and shower, and ensuring that they did so.

    I went to PS 208 (K-6) in Brooklyn in the 1980s, and the bathrooms still had the shower fixtures, disused for decades.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  68. @SPMoore8
    I totally agree with your final formulation. I had a boss once decades ago who always made a point of using the n-word within 5 minutes of meeting someone. He judged you by your reaction. Most people hemmed and hawed and didn't call him on it. If you called him on it and you were strident, you lost. If you were diplomatic about it, you were in.

    Bathroom/sexual/obscene humor or displays are very common among men (as I know you know). In the service or business world, how you react says something about you: if it makes you too uncomfortable, then you will be regarded as uptight, and maybe too rigid in your self-estimation. If you go with the flow, and even top it, you are gold.

    Interestingly, I have seen a lot of that in both the service and in business, but I spent ten years in academia and I never, ever saw it. But then academy types have terrible senses of humor, largely because they are incapable of being irreverent.

    Goes without saying academic types have less testosterone, but they also have a Communist-level political correctness floating around.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  69. WhatEvvs [AKA "Prada Yada Yada"] says:
    @James Kabala
    The movie 42 features a scene (apparently based on a real incident) in which a teammate encourages Jackie Robinson to end his habit of showering alone (which he does for fear of disturbing the white players). There is no hint that the white players have any dislike of showering with each other - and yet the scene (starts at 0:48, following another famous real-life scene of male bonding) is still filtered through modern "This isn't gay, is it?" sensibilities:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jXzijyicdw

    (I should add that I personally could not imagine a group shower. My college actually had a group shower in one of the bathrooms in my dorm that was famously never used - everyone used the individual showers located on the other side of the floor. But is remarkable how sharply views on this subject have changed.)

    Off topic: What happened to the kind of accent that Red Barber had? It sounds so different from a modern Southern accent or even from the way most other Southerners of that era talked.

    “is still filtered through modern “This isn’t gay, is it?” sensibilities:”

    Which is one of the reasons I hate American movies. Apart from the fact that most (well, virtually all) the movies suck, “this isn’t gay” permeates them. Not to mention, gay references permeate most online criticism. Anytime you have more than one lad in a scene, there is going to be an obligatory “this isn’t gay” in the movie, and a “this is gay” in some online twerp’s review. I exaggerate, but only slightly.

    I just saw a wonderful Indian movie called “3 Idiots” that had so much touchy-feely between men it could never be remade in Hollywood. I’m glad of that because Hollywood would only fuck it up royally.

    Face it, this country is totally pornified and totally homosexualized. So Blowhard & Auster were right after all.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Glaivester
    I've seen that movie. I liked the scene where the Professor gives the wunderkind his pen, which he had earlier smugly suggested he could never find someone who would be worthy to receive.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  70. @WGG
    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other. Mainly unspoken, all it takes is to be naked and to meet eyes with a willing participant and the game is afoot. I would think that fact would make a straight man want to cover up so he won't mistakenly catch someone's eye then quickly become an unwilling participant to something untoward.

    Read Craigslist "missed connections" in any city.

    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other.

    I’m assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    I’m assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.


     

    Not necessarily, according to the greatest locker room pickup anthem ever.

    It was Greek to them
    and they came again,
    thrashing on cold tile…

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  71. Sounds like Exhibit X in the ongoing saga of the rise of the nerds; who as everyone that grew up on 80s movies knows, hated the gym locker room and its humiliations.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  72. @Steve Sailer
    A lot of things happened in the year 1917 to make daily life in America more modern.

    The cult of physical fitness can also be linked to military concerns.Cf , for example, British anxiety during the Second Boer War about the large numbers of men who were “unfit for service.” All kinds of stuff was printed about national degeneracy, etc.And it’s right around that time that the “physical culture” movement really started to get off the ground.

    Interestingly, H.G. Wells’ “The Land Ironclads” (1903), which is set in a vaguely Boer War-like conflict, seems to have been partially written as a rejoinder to all this talk about the need for robust manliness.The tale depicts land ironclads (essentially proto-tanks) easily defeating armies composed of rough and tough outdoorsmen:

    “Manhood versus Machinery” occurred to him as a suitable headline. Journalism curdles all one’s mind to phrases.

    He strolled as near the lined-up prisoners as the sentinels seemed disposed to permit and surveyed them and compared their sturdy proportions with those of their lightly built captors.

    “Smart degenerates,” he muttered. “Anæmic cockneydom”

    The surrendered officers came quite close to him presently, and he could hear the colonel’s high-pitched tenor. The poor gentleman had spent three years of arduous toil upon the best material in the world perfecting that shooting from the saddle charge, and he was mourning with phrases of blasphemy, natural under the circumstances what one could be expected to do against this suitably consigned ironmongery.

    “Guns,” said some one.

    “Big guns they can walk round. You can’t shift big guns to keep pace with them and little guns in the open they rush. I saw ‘em rushed. You might do a surprise now and then—assassinate the brutes, perhaps——”

    “You might make things like ‘em.”

    “What? More ironmongery? Us?….”

    “I’ll call my article,” meditated the war correspondent, “‘Mankind versus Ironmongery,’ and quote the old boy at the beginning.”

    And he was much too good a journalist to spoil his contrast by remarking that the half-dozen comparatively slender young men in blue pajamas who were standing about their victorious land ironclad, drinking coffee and eating biscuits, had also in their eyes and carriage something not altogether degraded below the level of a man.

    http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0604041h.html

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  73. @Gato de la Biblioteca
    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn't even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.

    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn’t even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.

    You were responding to a comment about toilets.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  74. @Wilkey
    I remember getting only a B or C in junior high phys ed (late 80s) for not showering everyday. I simply couldn't stand the barracks-style showers that fit 15 kids at a time. Not that my grade would have been any better if it were based on actual, ya know, physical fitness.

    But when jhs gym moved to the swimming pool I was fine with it, though - partly because you had to shower to get the damn chlorine smell off you, partly because the showers only fit 5-6 kids at a time.

    But kids were harassed about their bodies. One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed "millimeter peter" by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn't far off the true measurement.

    By high school showers weren't expected or required, and I don't think any kid in my 9th grade gym class showered, though it may have had as much to do with the fact that it was the second-to-last class of the day. Same for 10th grade gym, when it was the final class of the day.

    In college our dorms had communal showers that fit four, and I never much cared that I had to shower with three other guys.

    What I've found personally is that a sense of modesty waxes and wanes based on need and situation. At my regular gym, which has separate showers, I keep pretty well covered up. Some of the other gyms I occasionally use have communal showers, and I use them without much thought or concern. If modesty is an option, then many people will choose modesty. If the option isn't available, then you do what you gotta do. And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys. And it's also important to remember that teenagers are extremely self-conscious about their bodies.

    “One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed ‘millimeter peter’ by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn’t far off the true measurement.”

    Let’s try to keep a good thought here. Perhaps he was a grower, rather than a shower?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Wilkey
    "Let’s try to keep a good thought here. Perhaps he was a grower, rather than a shower?"

    LOL - now that's one I've never heard before.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  75. jb says:

    Wow. I distinctly remember reading that article when it came out, but I hadn’t realized it’s been almost 20 years.

    I find the whole thing kind of sad. When I was in junior high and high school into the 70′s we had communal showers after gym class, and it never even crossed my mind that there was anything strange about it. I even remember swimming naked in gym class on occasion (although I have to say that did seem a mite weird, even then). Until I read that article in the Times I was completely unaware that anything had changed.

    What strikes me is how fast the change was! It would be interesting to get more information from gym teachers about precisely when things started to change, since that might help pin down what the driver was.

    Read More
    • Replies: @leftist conservative


    What strikes me is how fast the change was! It would be interesting to get more information from gym teachers about precisely when things started to change, since that might help pin down what the driver was.
     
    The rapid shift from communalism to neopuritanism coincided precisely with a shift in the ability of teachers to enforce classroom discipline. I lived in a town in west texas in the sixties and early seventies. That town was almost completely segregated between latino and white until the early seventies. Classroom discipline was quite strong back then, and students could be paddled right in front of the classroom. Thus, classrooms were calm.

    When I moved to san antonio in the early seventies, I attended a large high school that had been recently racially integrated. Once the racial integration took place, classroom discipline broke down. The teachers and school admin were afraid of blacks filing racial discrimination complaints against them. And so the blacks could raise hell in the classroom.

    That same fear of black complaints still plagues america--in many gov't agencies even today, management is afraid of black bias complaints and will not make blacks work, but will make whites do the work of blacks.

    Homogeneity breeds trust. Heterogeneity breeds mistrust and conflict.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  76. @Wilkey
    I remember getting only a B or C in junior high phys ed (late 80s) for not showering everyday. I simply couldn't stand the barracks-style showers that fit 15 kids at a time. Not that my grade would have been any better if it were based on actual, ya know, physical fitness.

    But when jhs gym moved to the swimming pool I was fine with it, though - partly because you had to shower to get the damn chlorine smell off you, partly because the showers only fit 5-6 kids at a time.

    But kids were harassed about their bodies. One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed "millimeter peter" by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn't far off the true measurement.

    By high school showers weren't expected or required, and I don't think any kid in my 9th grade gym class showered, though it may have had as much to do with the fact that it was the second-to-last class of the day. Same for 10th grade gym, when it was the final class of the day.

    In college our dorms had communal showers that fit four, and I never much cared that I had to shower with three other guys.

    What I've found personally is that a sense of modesty waxes and wanes based on need and situation. At my regular gym, which has separate showers, I keep pretty well covered up. Some of the other gyms I occasionally use have communal showers, and I use them without much thought or concern. If modesty is an option, then many people will choose modesty. If the option isn't available, then you do what you gotta do. And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys. And it's also important to remember that teenagers are extremely self-conscious about their bodies.

    And yeah, in my experience older men are much less modest than younger guys.

    As an older man myself, I’ve found that you eventually arrive at the Age Of Not Giving A Shit, and that applies to more situations than group showering.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  77. @joeyjoejoe
    When I was a kid (early '70's), there were public communal showers on the beach at Virginia Beach (sex segregated, of course). As I recall, they were essentially big tents (but these are memories from a 6 year old, over 45 years ago, so they may be wrong). We'd spend the day at the beach, go into the public shower, shower, then drive home late into the night. I was extremely self conscious, but I don't think my parents were uncomfortable.

    joeyjoe

    Lot’s of beaches have showers to rinse off, but you’re supposed to leave your swimsuit on! Are you saying that people showered together in the nude?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  78. I can still remember the shock I experienced in middle school at an Army housing facility in Germany when the PE class ended and boys started showering. I did not participate!

    In high school, now in Texas, I didn’t have to shower as I earned my PE credits by playing tennis and practices were after school.

    Then I got to college and found out that my dorm, one of the oldest on campus, had only a large room with shower heads sticking out of the wall. No room to hang a towel or anything.

    It was just one of those things where everybody else was going through the same adjustment and we all just went with the process and didn’t say anything.

    There was one chubby guy who would only take his showers at midnight when no one else went in there. He nearly exploded with rage one time when some other guys snuck in there, stole his towel from the adjacent room and pretended to take his picture.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  79. I think some of you have this backwards. It’s not that men on their own decided it looked gay to shower together; the recent increase in licentiousness caused gays to start actively hitting on men in locker rooms.

    My high school in Texas (granted, 100% white, 0% homosexual in my 2003 graduating class) had showers that everyone used after PE and team sports. Coaches never had to force anyone to use them; it was just what you did after working out. Here was some joking, but no visible bullying or people appearing traumatized.

    After I graduated and started working out in a commercial gym though, I quickly realized that male nudity in he locker room was a kind of signal to gays. After being hit on multiple times, I started covering up with a towel at all times, and the active solicitation dropped off.

    Conversations I’ve had with others have led me to believe this is the case throughout the rest of the country.

    I’ve heard the pop culture references to how supposedly traumatizing it is for high schoolers to have to shower together, but I always assumed it was some neurosis that only affected northerners, dweebs, gay wads and dork wads.

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    After I graduated and started working out in a commercial gym though, I quickly realized that male nudity in he locker room was a kind of signal to gays. After being hit on multiple times, I started covering up with a towel at all times, and the active solicitation dropped off.

    If you don't mind, just what did they say or do that was "active soliciation."

    I've heard that gay men, who by and large not aggressive in most social circumstances, are very sexually aggressive in social circumstances they feel comfortable in.

    What might their pick up line be? Would it be similar to that of an aggressive straight male hitting on a woman?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  80. “Jefferson says:

    The late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia held hands with George W. Bush which would look really Gay to guys like you, but he was very much a Heterosexual man as he had over 23 wives.

    It did look really gay. And no President of the United States ought to have done it. And if George W. Bush had actually given a damn about the country he ostensibly served and the people he ostensibly represented, he wouldn’t have offended the sensibilities of those people – his constituents, the people who elected him.

    Having over 23 wives is the epitome of Heterosexuality. That means the guy really really enjoyed the company of women.”

    It means the guy wanted a lot of heirs. And as we all know, homosexuality is completely unknown in the Islamic world. No wealthy sheik ever had a rent-boy on the side.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  81. @hmmm
    As I recall, there was never enough time to do anything in gym class. This was back in the 60's. We had to go to our regular locker, get our gym bag, go to locker room, change to gym outfit. Then do some half assed sports activity. Then, back to locker room, shower, dry off, dress, put stuff in gym bag, back to locker and then off to the next class.

    The coaches were never over WW 2. Even the young ones had to go through universal service. So they yelled a lot. We had to line up and call off our name.

    But, one of the big things was they had a pool. Swimming pools in Junior High! and, of course, High School. That was a big deal and considered a major advance. Never mind that they never taught swimming to those that didn't know how. Plus, it was too much trouble and the coaches preferred other activities.

    Like every other damn thing in America, it started out as a 'good idea' ... lets build good gyms for our kids. And give em a locker room. Just like real athletes. There was a certain logic to it. Did anyone ever think ... 'lets spend a lot of money and time to add another innovation to education to fuck up our kids?' And, yea. At least half the innovations were idiotic.

    But back to the WW 2, Military attitudes. I always hated that shit, except when it seemed funny. But there was a sea change with Vietnam. All the pseudo, macho shit from WW 2 was openly disdained and no one would have anything to do with any sort of regimentation. Not to mention the fact that 90% + vets never made it to within a mile of a front line. Culturally, Vietnam was the conclusion of WW 2. It is hard to convey just how much prestige the military had after WW 2. It took them 20 years to piss it all away. The military and vets were very much behind any war. The often spoken notion, 'we did it ... don't be a pussy' was ubiquitous.

    And WW 2 ... what a war!!! We went from a depression to max fiscal stimulus. Plus .. the main positive .. we bombed the shit out of all global competition. And we nuked the Japs. There were huge lags -- it took most of the late 40's to demobilize and convert from a war economy. They didn't really start building skyscrapers until the mid 50's or so. The Interstates didn't get done until the 60's. Same with building out suburbs.

    Anyway ... Now I am uninterested in any sporting activity that can't be done in casual clothing. It is amazing what can be done *without* buying all sorts of purpose designed outfits. It is one reason why it takes people their entire life to get around to using their lifetime gym memberships. It adds 1/2 hour to any exercise activity. It is part of the dysfunctional trend of having normal people believe that they need to emulate pros to participate in any sporting activity. Kids can toss around a football, shoot hoops, a little baseball, definitely ride a bicycle, etc without uniforms and shit. To conclude ... every fucking 'advance' seemed like a good idea at the time. And WW 2 cast a huge shadow for a couple of decades. And people would be healthier if they didn't have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn't require huge amounts of gear.

    “And people would be healthier if they didn’t have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn’t require huge amounts of gear.”

    Well said. I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Swizzle Stick
    I have a hard time getting over my biases against bicycle riders. In my neck of the woods, people on bikes are assumed to have too many DUI's to ever get their licenses back (or drug dealers that live with their grandmas). The gear is a way to separate yourself from these folks.
    , @Vico
    "I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon."

    That is still the case in Amsterdam & Copenhagen - people ride bikes in their everyday clothes, without helmets, & therefore cycling is a common phenomenon, it's safer & part of the mainstream.
    , @Anonym
    To be fair... any collision with a vehicle is likely to result in the death of the cyclist so it is dumb to ride regularly without high vis clothing. It is worth riding with a rear view mirror on your helmet too for the same reason... most wouldn't feel comfortable driving a car with the mirrors gone, why tolerate it in a vehicle where steel vehicles with 10× your mass are approaching from behind all the time?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  82. Of course in school it is a zero-sum game. As long as your classmates aren’t showering, what does it matter if you shower?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  83. @Formerly CARealist
    Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don't have to go through the day smelling other people's stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    In Missoula’s old YMCA building the women’s dressing room had one or two toilets sitting out in the open…god that grossed me out.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  84. @Jefferson
    "I’ve been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy."

    The late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia held hands with George W. Bush which would look really Gay to guys like you , but he was very much a Heterosexual man as he had over 23 wives. Having over 23 wives is the epitome of Heterosexuality. That means the guy really really enjoyed the company of women.

    Middle Eastern men and Mediterranean men have more sexual testosterone than Anglo Saxon Protestant men and Northern European men in general.

    “Middle Eastern men and Mediterranean men have more sexual testosterone than Anglo Saxon Protestant men and Northern European men in general.”

    You seem to be unaware of sexual mores in Afghanistan. Yes Afghan men may have a lot of testosterone – and they expend a lot of it buggering boys, as ivvenalis mentioned.

    The west has the sexual customs and taboos that it has for good reasons.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  85. In school in England in the 60′s we had communal showers or baths as a matter of course. You got muddy playing soccer. Never thought anything of it at the time.

    It always has amazed me that US men wear baggy swimming shorts because briefs outline the genitals. This had honestly never occurred to me until someone explained it to me. I thought they were joking, but apparently not so.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  86. @Formerly CARealist
    Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don't have to go through the day smelling other people's stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    No doors on the stalls was also true at San Francisco’s premier public high school when I got there in ’73. Couldn’t believe it, never used ‘em.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  87. @SPMoore8
    You were definitely taught in those days that nakedness was no big deal, when the occasion called for it. I mean, sure, casting back in my memory I can remember being a little intimidated the first time I went to Kezar stadium in the '60's having to urinate in these huge troughs with 50 adults who had consumed massive quantities of beer. But it was something you were supposed to just slough off, same as taking a shower, getting rectal exams in the service, etc.

    I remember reading somewhere that LBJ liked to drag guys into the White House bathroom and discuss policy with them when he was on the throne. All the East Coast elitist types would be horrified, but LBJ was just messing with their minds.

    Did you dump your drink on Brodie?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  88. One option I don’t see mentioned is the fascination with trench socialism by elites following the first world war. Millions returned from the war having see men of all classes working for a common purpose and they saw that as a model for civil society. Women of high status would be working as nurses, the sons of rich men would take orders from the butcher’s son.

    After the war, a whole lot of schemes to replicate it. The Progressive obsession with education is motivated by a desire to cut parenting out of the loop in order to create the right citizens for the utopian future. Making school children shower together certain works to enforce the egalitarian mindset.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  89. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Back in public high school in the late 60′s our swim classes were conducted without clothes. I can’t see any good reasons for it. It doesn’t seem as if it could have been more hygienic than wearing swimsuits. In retrospect it strikes me as having been something akin to a herd of cattle being run through it’s paces, animals being hosed down as needed. The 60′s were less than thirty years after WWII so there was this influence of everybody being ordered about in groups by coaches who all had military style crewcuts. Mass activity, mass conformity, individuality being suppressed, all seemed geared toward turning out the next generation of willing cannon-fodder for the next war.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  90. @Peter Meyer
    Per Wikipedia, the YMCA used to allow/encourage/require men to swim nude up until the 1960s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nude_swimming#Indoor_pools

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess? But of course people were much less squeamish in those days. Foucault also wrote (to reiterate slumber_j) that less aggressive forms of pedophilia, and adolescent sexuality generally, were a minor concern in pre-modern times. So the village pervert showed his penis to an 11 year old girl...what's the big deal? Not until the rise of psychiatry and the asylum was this considered a pathology and a grave crime. And Foucault semi-advocated for the decriminalization of sexual relations between minors and adults:

    https://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/danger.htm

    Foucault and his line of thought were influential in the 70s, in Europe and elsewhere (and still today, amongst social scientists). Child pornography was legal in, e.g., progressive Sweden:

    http://www.icenews.is/2009/01/29/child-pornography-in-swedish-national-library/

    Just an example of how quickly and violently fads can reverse themselves. The present is fleeting, the future uncertain. The past is another country.

    Yes. Remarkably enough, the most infamous of raging feminists, Andrea Dworkin (d. 2005), supported the legalization of sexual relations between children and adults. She was only dissuaded from doing so by the now less infamous but equally raging feminist Mary Daly (d. 2010), who said no, no, this messes children up dreadfully and with lasting consequences; the evidence is coming in now that it’s not so taboo to talk about it.

    I suspect we’re all lucky as a society that Daly was so fierce in her objections, because if the legalization of child sex had become part of feminist doctrine it would have become entrenched there, indefinitely.

    And no, I cannot find the original source of this exchange anywhere online or off it. I know that at one point I was able to do so, but have since lost track of it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Brutusale
    For all the alleged biases of the Roman Catholic Church, that a daft crank like Mary Daly could teach 30+ years at Jesuit Boston College speaks volumes. She'd have probably been there until her death if she didn't go full loon and refuse to accept male students in her "advanced" feminism classes.

    The irony of classes on female exclusion from power by the Patriarchy practicing exclusion was obviously lost on her.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  91. @Gato de la Biblioteca
    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn't even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.

    No Icepick – he is not talking about shower stalls. He is talking about shitting stalls. In old WWII type military barracks for example, you had to shit out in the open in front of everyone.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  92. I suspect we’re all lucky as a society that Daly was so fierce in her objections, because if the legalization of child sex had become part of feminist doctrine it would have become entrenched there, indefinitely.

    That would have greatly weakened the force of organized feminism, leaving the rest of us much better off. So how are we “lucky”?

    The gay lobby knew just what it was doing when it threw their old allies NAMBLA under the bus. Cynical, but shrewd.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    "Reg Cæsar says:

    The gay lobby knew just what it was doing when it threw their old allies NAMBLA under the bus. Cynical, but shrewd."

    They will rehabilitate them when they feel the time is right.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  93. Sitting in a Russian bath-house on a Avenue B
    No matter how much we sweat, we just can’t agree
    Ai, razminku yershikom provodim my
    Nobody learn no nothing from no history

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  94. I was going to mention that it might be related to a general societal shift to ectomorphic rather than mesomorphic preferences, as described by Sheldon.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Somatotype_and_constitutional_psychology

    But I see that Wiki has found that his theory is discredited and associated with eugenics, so I’ll shut up now.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  95. @syonredux

    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other.
     
    I'm assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.

    I’m assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.

    Not necessarily, according to the greatest locker room pickup anthem ever.

    It was Greek to them
    and they came again,
    thrashing on cold tile…

    Read More
    • Replies: @syonredux

    I’m assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.

    Not necessarily, according to the greatest locker room pickup anthem ever.

    It was Greek to them
    and they came again,
    thrashing on cold tile…
     
    Maybe so, but I know that that would never happen at the gym that I go to.Heck, they even dropped from the membership an old guy who had a tendency to sit around in the buff*.The gym's located near some Gay-friendly spots, and I think that the management is very nervous about the club getting the wrong sort of reputation.


    * Practically no one ever uses the shower, and locker room disrobing is mostly a matter of stripping down to your underwear.He was the only person that I ever saw sans clothes in the locker room.Presumably, he was more accustomed to the ethos of an earlier era.Or maybe he was a pervert....
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  96. My son goes to private school and the showers are individual private showers with curtains like at home and probably nicer than many homes. The other guys would think it nasty for a guy not to shower after a morning practice.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  97. @WGG
    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other. Mainly unspoken, all it takes is to be naked and to meet eyes with a willing participant and the game is afoot. I would think that fact would make a straight man want to cover up so he won't mistakenly catch someone's eye then quickly become an unwilling participant to something untoward.

    Read Craigslist "missed connections" in any city.

    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now.

    what the…

    Got a link for that?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqOowvq7rDY
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  98. @Reg Cæsar

    I suspect we’re all lucky as a society that Daly was so fierce in her objections, because if the legalization of child sex had become part of feminist doctrine it would have become entrenched there, indefinitely.
     
    That would have greatly weakened the force of organized feminism, leaving the rest of us much better off. So how are we "lucky"?

    The gay lobby knew just what it was doing when it threw their old allies NAMBLA under the bus. Cynical, but shrewd.

    “Reg Cæsar says:

    The gay lobby knew just what it was doing when it threw their old allies NAMBLA under the bus. Cynical, but shrewd.”

    They will rehabilitate them when they feel the time is right.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  99. @Audacious Epigone
    It's too bad shared showers in schools aren't a thing anymore because there is potentially a lot of opportunity for mischievous high school guys to have fun claiming they identify as women and demanding to shower with the girls.

    Anyone who tried would be ostracized as by girls and guys alike as a creep (which pretty much also doubles as an acceptable substitute for faggot now). So at least there’s that.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  100. @Anonymous


    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now.

     

    what the...

    Got a link for that?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  101. @Formerly CARealist
    Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don't have to go through the day smelling other people's stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    At one point in the 1970s, Lenox Square Mall in Atlanta removed the stall doors because so many gay men were using the restrooms for sex.

    I remember my summer camp had a communal bathhouse with the shower heads and six toilets lined up across from each other. Ho. Lee. Crap. But I recall we just grinned and bore it. Now there are cabins. I have to say I value our modern fastidiousness.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous

    I remember my summer camp had a communal bathhouse with the shower heads and six toilets lined up across from each other.
     
    What the hell kind of summer camp did you go to? Blumpkin camp?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  102. @Mr. Anon
    "And people would be healthier if they didn’t have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn’t require huge amounts of gear."

    Well said. I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon.

    I have a hard time getting over my biases against bicycle riders. In my neck of the woods, people on bikes are assumed to have too many DUI’s to ever get their licenses back (or drug dealers that live with their grandmas). The gear is a way to separate yourself from these folks.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Wilkey
    "The gear is a way to separate yourself from these folks."

    Exactly this. Wearing cycling gear is a sign that you're A SERIOUS CYCLER! and a way to separate yourself from those who ride because they have to.

    But if you do ride often enough, cycling clothes are quite practical, and a lot more comfortable to wear than jeans and street shoes. Those of us who exercise frequently feel that the time it takes to change clothes is well worth it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  103. e says:
    @WGG
    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other. Mainly unspoken, all it takes is to be naked and to meet eyes with a willing participant and the game is afoot. I would think that fact would make a straight man want to cover up so he won't mistakenly catch someone's eye then quickly become an unwilling participant to something untoward.

    Read Craigslist "missed connections" in any city.

    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other.

    If this is true, why would young males be pro gays? If it’s true, am I to assume young straight males in gyms are simply cowering wimps?

    I’d like some proof of this.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
    Ms. e, I hold a membership at a national chain gym (10 years) and while I can not attest to the hook-ups, I will say that there are a lot of guys who walk around the change/restroom in the nude. I am more than a bit put off by some dude standing buck naked at the vanity, shaving , while I just want to wash my hands. No reason for that; wrap a towel around yourself, for sanitary sake. Don't want your Johnson resting against the Formica. One last thing....I think you are a woman so I will add this men's locker room ritual.....THE TOWEL SNAP. Annoy people and have a towel snapped on your butt, or dare I say this, your dick, and you learn locker room etiquette in an effing hurry. You would love to be the fly on the wall in my 60s HS locker room.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  104. @SPMoore8
    I totally agree with your final formulation. I had a boss once decades ago who always made a point of using the n-word within 5 minutes of meeting someone. He judged you by your reaction. Most people hemmed and hawed and didn't call him on it. If you called him on it and you were strident, you lost. If you were diplomatic about it, you were in.

    Bathroom/sexual/obscene humor or displays are very common among men (as I know you know). In the service or business world, how you react says something about you: if it makes you too uncomfortable, then you will be regarded as uptight, and maybe too rigid in your self-estimation. If you go with the flow, and even top it, you are gold.

    Interestingly, I have seen a lot of that in both the service and in business, but I spent ten years in academia and I never, ever saw it. But then academy types have terrible senses of humor, largely because they are incapable of being irreverent.

    Bathroom/sexual/obscene humor or displays are very common among men (as I know you know). In the service or business world, how you react says something about you

    Seinfeld picked up on that in the bit about George and some good-ol-boy business partners who good-naturedly address one another as “you ol’ bastard”. Then George tries that and it goes over like a lead balloon.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  105. @The Last Real Calvinist
    I was in jr high/high school from 1978-84, and we did group showers, and thought little about it. I hadn't even realized something like this would drop out of favor!

    I can confirm that the Japanese are not too worried about group nudity. Mrs Calvinist and I both like hot springs, so on our trips to Japan we always try to visit some. Many are sex-segregated, and once you're past the locker room door, it's nudity all the way. Everybody first needs to shower thoroughly, usually in a big open bathroom, and then not a stitch of clothing is allowed in the bathing areas, which remain single-sex. A very tall white man like me gets a few odd looks, but I've never had too much trouble. Having said that, there are supposed to be places that don't allow foreigners, I guess since seeing them in such circumstances would be considered too much for the usual customers to deal with.

    The initially-disconcerting thing about these places is that the locker room attendants, even on the men's side, are often older women, so you'd better be prepared.

    There are also co-ed places, but they require swimsuits to be worn.

    China has plenty of hot springs as well, but they tend to be co-ed, again with swimsuits, although in the single-sex locker rooms there are no attempts to hide nudity.

    A very tall white man like me gets a few odd looks, but I’ve never had too much trouble.

    In the land of the Jap, the one-inch man is king.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  106. @The Anti-Gnostic
    At one point in the 1970s, Lenox Square Mall in Atlanta removed the stall doors because so many gay men were using the restrooms for sex.

    I remember my summer camp had a communal bathhouse with the shower heads and six toilets lined up across from each other. Ho. Lee. Crap. But I recall we just grinned and bore it. Now there are cabins. I have to say I value our modern fastidiousness.

    I remember my summer camp had a communal bathhouse with the shower heads and six toilets lined up across from each other.

    What the hell kind of summer camp did you go to? Blumpkin camp?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  107. Surprised that no one has mentioned, but many of us quit showering in gyms once cameraphones became ubiquitous. Not everyone wants to be famous on YouTube..

    Read More
    • Replies: @Wilkey
    "Surprised that no one has mentioned, but many of us quit showering in gyms once cameraphones became ubiquitous. Not everyone wants to be famous on YouTube."

    You missed the discussion on an earlier post, where that was posited as a reason, which is why Steve dug up a pre-camera phone article on objections to group showers.

    Camera phones don't help the cause of group showering, of course, but if a guy pulls out his cell phone in the locker room he's likely to get a thorough verbal trouncing. I've accosted people more than once over the matter.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  108. Before they remodeled the restrooms at the Buffalo Bills stadium ,aka, “The Ralph,” there were troughs along the wall as urinals. You stood shoulder to shoulder and peed. In the center of the room was a round sink, with a foot activated pedal bar for water ,however I never saw anyone washing their hands, it functioned as another urinal. Sort of like a circular firing squad. I took swimming lesson at the local HS from about seven years old to maybe twelve. We swam in the nude. There was a required pre-swim shower and then we paraded past Karl the instructor. I remember a long line of boys, cupping their little dicks and balls in their hands as they waited to be inspected. Once cleared, step in the chlorine foot bath and off to the pool. Karl had a lisp.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  109. @Anonymous
    Iran has an interesting policy regarding gays. The government apparently subsidizes and encourages sex change operations for gays as "gender confirmation surgery":

    http://dailycaller.com/2015/06/26/state-department-officially-calls-irans-forced-sex-change-surgeries-confirmation/

    ISIS has other ideas.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/06/isis-celebrates-lovewins-by-tossing-4-gays-from-roof-of-building/

    Some other site that I can’t find right now showed ISIS tweets mocking Kennedy’s words in his majority decision.

    Read More
    • Replies: @leftist conservative


    ISIS has other ideas.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/06/isis-celebrates-lovewins-by-tossing-4-gays-from-roof-of-building/

    Some other site that I can’t find right now showed ISIS tweets mocking Kennedy’s words in his majority decision.
     
    It is fascinating how the establishment has turned the american conservative base against ISIS and fundamental islanism, considering that fundamental islam is similar to fundamental protestantism in many ways.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  110. @Kevin O'Keeffe
    "One kid with an unfortunately small penis was dubbed 'millimeter peter' by some of the bigger assholes in the class. Sadly for him, millimeter wasn’t far off the true measurement."

    Let's try to keep a good thought here. Perhaps he was a grower, rather than a shower?

    “Let’s try to keep a good thought here. Perhaps he was a grower, rather than a shower?”

    LOL – now that’s one I’ve never heard before.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  111. e says:
    @Sparkling Wiggle
    I think some of you have this backwards. It's not that men on their own decided it looked gay to shower together; the recent increase in licentiousness caused gays to start actively hitting on men in locker rooms.

    My high school in Texas (granted, 100% white, 0% homosexual in my 2003 graduating class) had showers that everyone used after PE and team sports. Coaches never had to force anyone to use them; it was just what you did after working out. Here was some joking, but no visible bullying or people appearing traumatized.

    After I graduated and started working out in a commercial gym though, I quickly realized that male nudity in he locker room was a kind of signal to gays. After being hit on multiple times, I started covering up with a towel at all times, and the active solicitation dropped off.

    Conversations I've had with others have led me to believe this is the case throughout the rest of the country.

    I've heard the pop culture references to how supposedly traumatizing it is for high schoolers to have to shower together, but I always assumed it was some neurosis that only affected northerners, dweebs, gay wads and dork wads.

    After I graduated and started working out in a commercial gym though, I quickly realized that male nudity in he locker room was a kind of signal to gays. After being hit on multiple times, I started covering up with a towel at all times, and the active solicitation dropped off.

    If you don’t mind, just what did they say or do that was “active soliciation.”

    I’ve heard that gay men, who by and large not aggressive in most social circumstances, are very sexually aggressive in social circumstances they feel comfortable in.

    What might their pick up line be? Would it be similar to that of an aggressive straight male hitting on a woman?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sparkling Wiggle
    Oh hell no. Male homosexuals are still male, and have a basic masculine practicality about sex. I think they know they both have a male sex drive, and have a certain transactional approach to sex in the absence of having to seduce a female.

    The pickup lines were straight up propositions for sex. I got "nice c*ck" out of the blue more than once. As another poster mentioned, sometimes they would make eye contact and start jerking themselves. I recall a couple at were more veiled: a guy would start a seemingly normal conversation about he workout he had just finished, but then start making oblique references and innuendo. "Man, I did squats yesterday and my ass is sore. Like on FIRE! Not that that's always a bad thing!" Said in a certain tone of voice, and then with more references to his ass, the intent became clear.

    So wearing a towel at all times and avoiding eye contact became SOP.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  112. @Kyle McKenna
    Surprised that no one has mentioned, but many of us quit showering in gyms once cameraphones became ubiquitous. Not everyone wants to be famous on YouTube..

    “Surprised that no one has mentioned, but many of us quit showering in gyms once cameraphones became ubiquitous. Not everyone wants to be famous on YouTube.”

    You missed the discussion on an earlier post, where that was posited as a reason, which is why Steve dug up a pre-camera phone article on objections to group showers.

    Camera phones don’t help the cause of group showering, of course, but if a guy pulls out his cell phone in the locker room he’s likely to get a thorough verbal trouncing. I’ve accosted people more than once over the matter.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  113. @Swizzle Stick
    I have a hard time getting over my biases against bicycle riders. In my neck of the woods, people on bikes are assumed to have too many DUI's to ever get their licenses back (or drug dealers that live with their grandmas). The gear is a way to separate yourself from these folks.

    “The gear is a way to separate yourself from these folks.”

    Exactly this. Wearing cycling gear is a sign that you’re A SERIOUS CYCLER! and a way to separate yourself from those who ride because they have to.

    But if you do ride often enough, cycling clothes are quite practical, and a lot more comfortable to wear than jeans and street shoes. Those of us who exercise frequently feel that the time it takes to change clothes is well worth it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  114. jon says:
    @Whiskey
    Perhaps the more gay-celebrating a society becomes, the more normal straight men avoid anything that might be remotely considered gay?

    Perhaps the more gay-celebrating a society becomes, the more normal straight men avoid anything that might be remotely considered gay?

    If my experiences living/traveling around East Asia are any indication, I definitely think this has something to do with it. In places like Korea and Japan, they basically don’t even acknowledge that homosexuality is a thing. And I think that has something to do with how comfortable they are doing things that would seem really gay in America – bathing nude together, invading each other’s personal space, large groups of only men hanging out in small rooms singing songs to each other …

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  115. @Reg Cæsar

    I’m assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.


     

    Not necessarily, according to the greatest locker room pickup anthem ever.

    It was Greek to them
    and they came again,
    thrashing on cold tile…

    I’m assuming that masturbation part happens after they leave the gym.

    Not necessarily, according to the greatest locker room pickup anthem ever.

    It was Greek to them
    and they came again,
    thrashing on cold tile…

    Maybe so, but I know that that would never happen at the gym that I go to.Heck, they even dropped from the membership an old guy who had a tendency to sit around in the buff*.The gym’s located near some Gay-friendly spots, and I think that the management is very nervous about the club getting the wrong sort of reputation.

    * Practically no one ever uses the shower, and locker room disrobing is mostly a matter of stripping down to your underwear.He was the only person that I ever saw sans clothes in the locker room.Presumably, he was more accustomed to the ethos of an earlier era.Or maybe he was a pervert….

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  116. @jb
    Wow. I distinctly remember reading that article when it came out, but I hadn't realized it's been almost 20 years.

    I find the whole thing kind of sad. When I was in junior high and high school into the 70's we had communal showers after gym class, and it never even crossed my mind that there was anything strange about it. I even remember swimming naked in gym class on occasion (although I have to say that did seem a mite weird, even then). Until I read that article in the Times I was completely unaware that anything had changed.

    What strikes me is how fast the change was! It would be interesting to get more information from gym teachers about precisely when things started to change, since that might help pin down what the driver was.

    What strikes me is how fast the change was! It would be interesting to get more information from gym teachers about precisely when things started to change, since that might help pin down what the driver was.

    The rapid shift from communalism to neopuritanism coincided precisely with a shift in the ability of teachers to enforce classroom discipline. I lived in a town in west texas in the sixties and early seventies. That town was almost completely segregated between latino and white until the early seventies. Classroom discipline was quite strong back then, and students could be paddled right in front of the classroom. Thus, classrooms were calm.

    When I moved to san antonio in the early seventies, I attended a large high school that had been recently racially integrated. Once the racial integration took place, classroom discipline broke down. The teachers and school admin were afraid of blacks filing racial discrimination complaints against them. And so the blacks could raise hell in the classroom.

    That same fear of black complaints still plagues america–in many gov’t agencies even today, management is afraid of black bias complaints and will not make blacks work, but will make whites do the work of blacks.

    Homogeneity breeds trust. Heterogeneity breeds mistrust and conflict.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Wilkey
    "Homogeneity breeds trust. Heterogeneity breeds mistrust and conflict."

    Except that homogeneous black societies are even worse. One almost might say that it has little or nothing to do with hetero vs. homo, and a whole lot to do with something else.

    What it really amounts to is that blacks demand a more authoritarian hand to keep them in line. If you refuse to apply that authoritarianism by race, then you have to apply it to everyone equally - or else let everything go to hell, esp. for those who have to live around them.
    , @jb

    The rapid shift from communalism to neopuritanism coincided precisely with a shift in the ability of teachers to enforce classroom discipline.
     
    I don't know about this. The college town high school I went to (I graduated in the early 70's) was full of the well behaved white children of professors and professionals, along with a significant black minority (maybe 10 percent) that was dangerous and disruptive in the usual way, and to the best of my knowledge had always been so. This being a college town (a major university actually), it had already absorbed the full force of the radical 60's, and the teachers were already afraid to discipline blacks for fear of accusations of racism. Yet I remember no hint of what you usefully term "neopuritanism." (I don't remember it in college either, or in graduate school, where even in the 80's you showered in a big room with a tile floor and shower faucets coming out of the wall, and no stalls at all, but since these were much more elite institutions than my high school they don't really count against your thesis).

    My own suspicion is that it had more to do with the sexualization of our culture, with aggressive gay activism, and with the pedophilia panic. But that's just a suspicion, which is why it would be interesting to have hard data from high schools across the country telling us precisely when students stopped showering. But you'd need to interview a lot of old gym teachers, so it would be quite a project, and it's hard to see whose agenda would be advanced by the information. So it probably won't happen.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  117. @e
    ISIS has other ideas.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/06/isis-celebrates-lovewins-by-tossing-4-gays-from-roof-of-building/


    Some other site that I can't find right now showed ISIS tweets mocking Kennedy's words in his majority decision.

    ISIS has other ideas.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/06/isis-celebrates-lovewins-by-tossing-4-gays-from-roof-of-building/

    Some other site that I can’t find right now showed ISIS tweets mocking Kennedy’s words in his majority decision.

    It is fascinating how the establishment has turned the american conservative base against ISIS and fundamental islanism, considering that fundamental islam is similar to fundamental protestantism in many ways.

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    That's a bridge too far: evangelicals might be the loudest voice against all gay every day (maybe they're simply braver than the people here, including me, who mock gay "marriage") but it's ridiculous to say the fundamentalists in this country have anything in common with Islamic fundies. It's remarkable how people who've not been raised among religious people find them neighborly, helpful, and giving when they ARE around them. They do live their faith.

    At this point in time, they seem to have a greater respect and understanding of the US Constitution than most other Americans.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  118. @Anonymous
    You can see this generational divide at gyms and health clubs today. The really old guys in their 70s and stuff seem to have no problem being and walking around naked in the locker room. While the younger guys either don't shower or change in the locker rooms and just do it at home, or wear shorts, robes, or towels and avoid being naked out in the open.

    I always just assumed it was because the old guys just didn't care because they're so old, but I guess it must be a generational thing.
    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  119. @e
    Gay hook-ups are a big thing in the locker rooms of membership gyms now. Not sodomy, but both men masturbating while locking eye contact at the other.

    If this is true, why would young males be pro gays? If it's true, am I to assume young straight males in gyms are simply cowering wimps?

    I'd like some proof of this.

    Ms. e, I hold a membership at a national chain gym (10 years) and while I can not attest to the hook-ups, I will say that there are a lot of guys who walk around the change/restroom in the nude. I am more than a bit put off by some dude standing buck naked at the vanity, shaving , while I just want to wash my hands. No reason for that; wrap a towel around yourself, for sanitary sake. Don’t want your Johnson resting against the Formica. One last thing….I think you are a woman so I will add this men’s locker room ritual…..THE TOWEL SNAP. Annoy people and have a towel snapped on your butt, or dare I say this, your dick, and you learn locker room etiquette in an effing hurry. You would love to be the fly on the wall in my 60s HS locker room.

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    This has been an edifying post and discussion for me. I had no idea that the younger generation of males in this country do not take showers in their schools and do not do so because they are uncomfortable disrobing. I'm a Boomer so the generation gap is showing itself, I guess. As young girls, my friends and I were angst-ridden about entering junior high (that was 7th grade for us) for many reasons, one of which was the shower/undressing thing. We handled it by simply keeping towels wrapped around us, some holding more tightly to the towel than others.

    However, the guys were totally w/out towels, weren't given one until they showered. I'm familiar with the towel slap and some (I'm sure not all) of the male locker room hi jinx as my boyfriend shared a lot of that with me, prodded by me, of course. However, as for male disrobing...my generation's males were simply used to it, I'd assume.

    I think a lot of things must be at work. In no particular order: 1) as someone said above, many kids, middle class kids, anyway, must be used to more privacy than kids of previous generations' 2) I'll add that in this more mobile population, many kids haven't grown up with one another and the kids next to them in gym class are virtual strangers; 3) many teens are in bad physical shape and they are ashamed of their bodies--male obesity in junior high and high school is out of control just as it is for girls; 4) the gay thing; 5) kids live in a much lower-trust society than that of my day 6) school personnel don't force kids to do ANYTHING today for fear of being sued
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  120. @leftist conservative


    What strikes me is how fast the change was! It would be interesting to get more information from gym teachers about precisely when things started to change, since that might help pin down what the driver was.
     
    The rapid shift from communalism to neopuritanism coincided precisely with a shift in the ability of teachers to enforce classroom discipline. I lived in a town in west texas in the sixties and early seventies. That town was almost completely segregated between latino and white until the early seventies. Classroom discipline was quite strong back then, and students could be paddled right in front of the classroom. Thus, classrooms were calm.

    When I moved to san antonio in the early seventies, I attended a large high school that had been recently racially integrated. Once the racial integration took place, classroom discipline broke down. The teachers and school admin were afraid of blacks filing racial discrimination complaints against them. And so the blacks could raise hell in the classroom.

    That same fear of black complaints still plagues america--in many gov't agencies even today, management is afraid of black bias complaints and will not make blacks work, but will make whites do the work of blacks.

    Homogeneity breeds trust. Heterogeneity breeds mistrust and conflict.

    “Homogeneity breeds trust. Heterogeneity breeds mistrust and conflict.”

    Except that homogeneous black societies are even worse. One almost might say that it has little or nothing to do with hetero vs. homo, and a whole lot to do with something else.

    What it really amounts to is that blacks demand a more authoritarian hand to keep them in line. If you refuse to apply that authoritarianism by race, then you have to apply it to everyone equally – or else let everything go to hell, esp. for those who have to live around them.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  121. e says:
    @leftist conservative


    ISIS has other ideas.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/06/isis-celebrates-lovewins-by-tossing-4-gays-from-roof-of-building/

    Some other site that I can’t find right now showed ISIS tweets mocking Kennedy’s words in his majority decision.
     
    It is fascinating how the establishment has turned the american conservative base against ISIS and fundamental islanism, considering that fundamental islam is similar to fundamental protestantism in many ways.

    That’s a bridge too far: evangelicals might be the loudest voice against all gay every day (maybe they’re simply braver than the people here, including me, who mock gay “marriage”) but it’s ridiculous to say the fundamentalists in this country have anything in common with Islamic fundies. It’s remarkable how people who’ve not been raised among religious people find them neighborly, helpful, and giving when they ARE around them. They do live their faith.

    At this point in time, they seem to have a greater respect and understanding of the US Constitution than most other Americans.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    At this point in time, [evangelicsls] seem to have a greater respect and understanding of the US Constitution than most other Americans.

     

    Likewise, they may not believe in evolution, but they're among the few Americans left who accept it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  122. I didn’t shower in Middle Schooler because I was a late bloomer. It would have been cruel as hell to me to force me into that situation.

    By the time I was in high school I was a star athlete, but didn’t shower because I didn’t have the biggest pecker. Two lanky dudes were packing serious heat and I didn’t feel comfortable being a grower who was less than the best. My guess is that this self-awareness that one does not have king dong is a common reason that communal showering has fallen.

    Our society is governed by masculine hero worship. It will be the same in locker room. Here is an article, evidently from a gay perspective, that argues just that: http://www.outsports.com/2014/3/17/5515302/penis-size-matters-locker-room-gay-straight-study

    Basically, for men at least, you need huge muscle, a big wang and massive cockiness otherwise you are incomplete. Since few dudes have all of the above, few dudes want to shower communally. Even if you are the massively muscled man, but have a normal appendage, then in comes some dweeb with a giant phallus and your masculinity is instantly rendered void. Good luck with that. I skipped a D1A sports scholarship over this very issue. Massive hangup, but I am sure I am not the only one suffering from it.

    In my view, it is not fear of homosexuality that has driven away communal showering, but rather society’s shift towards hero worship wherein >95% of us come up short.

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    In my view, it is not fear of homosexuality that has driven away communal showering, but rather society’s shift towards hero worship wherein >95% of us come up short.

    You don't think previous generations of men (the men of the Greatest Generation or Boomers, for instance) had to live up to the masculine ideal of their times?

    What "shift to hero worship" exists for your generation that didn't exist for the previous one or two? Boys in the 40s and 40s looked at Charles Atlas ads in magazines all the time.

    My brother was 11 years older than I, a star basketball player and a popular kid, and when he was about 16/17 or so, he used to ask me, his baby sister, all of 5 or 6, to take both my hands and squeeze his bicep as hard as I could or to poke my forefinger in it to see if it was hard as a rock. I'd do it and watch him smile when I, of course, said, "It's a real muscle." It was a common occurrence to see him standing bare-chested in front of his mirror flexing. He was tall and lean, then and for the rest of his life.

    I think he must have felt no different than males of later generations as far as needing and wanting to live up to some male ideal.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  123. @e
    After I graduated and started working out in a commercial gym though, I quickly realized that male nudity in he locker room was a kind of signal to gays. After being hit on multiple times, I started covering up with a towel at all times, and the active solicitation dropped off.

    If you don't mind, just what did they say or do that was "active soliciation."

    I've heard that gay men, who by and large not aggressive in most social circumstances, are very sexually aggressive in social circumstances they feel comfortable in.

    What might their pick up line be? Would it be similar to that of an aggressive straight male hitting on a woman?

    Oh hell no. Male homosexuals are still male, and have a basic masculine practicality about sex. I think they know they both have a male sex drive, and have a certain transactional approach to sex in the absence of having to seduce a female.

    The pickup lines were straight up propositions for sex. I got “nice c*ck” out of the blue more than once. As another poster mentioned, sometimes they would make eye contact and start jerking themselves. I recall a couple at were more veiled: a guy would start a seemingly normal conversation about he workout he had just finished, but then start making oblique references and innuendo. “Man, I did squats yesterday and my ass is sore. Like on FIRE! Not that that’s always a bad thing!” Said in a certain tone of voice, and then with more references to his ass, the intent became clear.

    So wearing a towel at all times and avoiding eye contact became SOP.

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    Thanks for replying.

    I guess it's like everything else in life--people take advantage of others if given an inch.

    I think that in the "old days" that guy would've received a fist in his mouth.

    Does that not happen any more?

    Are the gay males you have run into in a gym "masculine" gays, the ones I keep hearing about but have NEVER met? Sure, there are those that lift weights for the meat market scene, perhaps, but I have a hard time believing they're tough guys. Like I said, never met a tough gay guy. Perhaps they frequent male gyms and that's why I've not met them?

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  124. @Mr. Anon
    "And people would be healthier if they didn’t have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn’t require huge amounts of gear."

    Well said. I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon.

    “I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon.”

    That is still the case in Amsterdam & Copenhagen – people ride bikes in their everyday clothes, without helmets, & therefore cycling is a common phenomenon, it’s safer & part of the mainstream.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  125. @Jefferson
    "I’ve been a lot more suspicious, maybe unjustifiably so, of this line of thought since being to Afghanistan. The same line about how not-gay kissing and holding hands is, except extended to straight-up sodomy."

    The late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia held hands with George W. Bush which would look really Gay to guys like you , but he was very much a Heterosexual man as he had over 23 wives. Having over 23 wives is the epitome of Heterosexuality. That means the guy really really enjoyed the company of women.

    Middle Eastern men and Mediterranean men have more sexual testosterone than Anglo Saxon Protestant men and Northern European men in general.

    How does “sexual testosterone” differ from regular testosterone?

    It’s personality and temperament, not testosterone. North Europeans men think about sex just as often but they are more introverted and less impulsive or hot headed. Thus being the strong, silent type is considered the masculine ideal in north European culture.

    This is one reason why contact sports tend to be more popular in Anglo countries and among upper class jocks in Latin countries – they require the discipline not to retaliate when you get hit in a heavy tackle.

    To a western male, Middle Eastern men are arrogant, narcissistic and emotionally unstable. Similarly, unless they can back up their swagger with looks, charm or real world achievements, western women will tend to see them as comical alpha male wannabes.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  126. e says:
    @Buffalo Joe
    Ms. e, I hold a membership at a national chain gym (10 years) and while I can not attest to the hook-ups, I will say that there are a lot of guys who walk around the change/restroom in the nude. I am more than a bit put off by some dude standing buck naked at the vanity, shaving , while I just want to wash my hands. No reason for that; wrap a towel around yourself, for sanitary sake. Don't want your Johnson resting against the Formica. One last thing....I think you are a woman so I will add this men's locker room ritual.....THE TOWEL SNAP. Annoy people and have a towel snapped on your butt, or dare I say this, your dick, and you learn locker room etiquette in an effing hurry. You would love to be the fly on the wall in my 60s HS locker room.

    This has been an edifying post and discussion for me. I had no idea that the younger generation of males in this country do not take showers in their schools and do not do so because they are uncomfortable disrobing. I’m a Boomer so the generation gap is showing itself, I guess. As young girls, my friends and I were angst-ridden about entering junior high (that was 7th grade for us) for many reasons, one of which was the shower/undressing thing. We handled it by simply keeping towels wrapped around us, some holding more tightly to the towel than others.

    However, the guys were totally w/out towels, weren’t given one until they showered. I’m familiar with the towel slap and some (I’m sure not all) of the male locker room hi jinx as my boyfriend shared a lot of that with me, prodded by me, of course. However, as for male disrobing…my generation’s males were simply used to it, I’d assume.

    I think a lot of things must be at work. In no particular order: 1) as someone said above, many kids, middle class kids, anyway, must be used to more privacy than kids of previous generations’ 2) I’ll add that in this more mobile population, many kids haven’t grown up with one another and the kids next to them in gym class are virtual strangers; 3) many teens are in bad physical shape and they are ashamed of their bodies–male obesity in junior high and high school is out of control just as it is for girls; 4) the gay thing; 5) kids live in a much lower-trust society than that of my day 6) school personnel don’t force kids to do ANYTHING today for fear of being sued

    Read More
    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
    Ms. .e, When I was seven or eight, the time I think that you make lifetime memories, my dad and my uncles were just seven years removed from their service in WWII. They had lived in the field or on ships for years with strangers. So when we went camping, using all army surplus goods, we peed on trees, crapped in the woods and swam in the nude. No big deal being naked with your adult family members and friends. I went to an all boys Catholic HS. I wasn't a star athlete, but I did earn four varsity letters, no awards for participation back then. We wore a shirt, tie and sport coat at all times in school. Laundry was done once a week at our house. I didn't get a clean dress shirt for each day of school. Hell, some guys wore the same sport coat for all four years, too big freshman year, too small senior year. My point is, you showered or you stunk. Not unusual to toss a stinking, fully dressed a-hole into the showers. Coach never said a thing. Our shower rooms, there were two, had twelve shower heads. They were crowded. I remember a guy peeing on the back of my leg in the shower, I bounced a full bar of Ivory soap off of his member ( trying to be polite here). End of that shit.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  127. @Sparkling Wiggle
    Oh hell no. Male homosexuals are still male, and have a basic masculine practicality about sex. I think they know they both have a male sex drive, and have a certain transactional approach to sex in the absence of having to seduce a female.

    The pickup lines were straight up propositions for sex. I got "nice c*ck" out of the blue more than once. As another poster mentioned, sometimes they would make eye contact and start jerking themselves. I recall a couple at were more veiled: a guy would start a seemingly normal conversation about he workout he had just finished, but then start making oblique references and innuendo. "Man, I did squats yesterday and my ass is sore. Like on FIRE! Not that that's always a bad thing!" Said in a certain tone of voice, and then with more references to his ass, the intent became clear.

    So wearing a towel at all times and avoiding eye contact became SOP.

    Thanks for replying.

    I guess it’s like everything else in life–people take advantage of others if given an inch.

    I think that in the “old days” that guy would’ve received a fist in his mouth.

    Does that not happen any more?

    Are the gay males you have run into in a gym “masculine” gays, the ones I keep hearing about but have NEVER met? Sure, there are those that lift weights for the meat market scene, perhaps, but I have a hard time believing they’re tough guys. Like I said, never met a tough gay guy. Perhaps they frequent male gyms and that’s why I’ve not met them?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    I yu h muubu ubbhbhb
    , @Sparkling Wiggle
    On average probably a lot less feminine than most gays, which is to say slightly less masculine than most straight gym-goers.
    , @Reg Cæsar
    Oh, E, darling, ask any male veteran about he-man homos. ("Gay" just doesn't seem to fit them.) Especially one who's been stationed on a major base or in a large city. Until recently, they were closeted-- out of discretion, not fear-- but could be rather aggressive in an oblique, underground way. You were never sure if this fellow wanted to to be friends, or something "deeper".

    Robert Oscar Lopez says that "don't ask" was a lifesaver for softer gays who were tormented and sometimes raped by their tougher brethren. (Lopez is bi and half-Pinoy, so he may be speaking from experience.) "Telling" would win one release.

    I can see how a woman could go through life never meeting this type. Or perhaps you have.

    The 1971 All in the Family episode "Judging Books by Covers" features rugged Philip Carey as Archie's old service mate who is eventually outed by Mike. Except for not making a pass at anyone, Carey nails down the type perfectly

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  128. A look back at CA in the JFK era

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    This was Miami in the 60s. You can have communal showers when you've got strong-chinned lawmen like Detective John Sorenson laying down the law and making sure there's no funny business going on:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltDZWQKNrCA
    , @anon
    Here's the top comment on that video:

    "So what were the girls doing at the same time? (And were they dressed as scantily?) Also don't see a single non-white kid in here."
     
    So much resentment. What's his problem?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  129. e says:
    @Woof
    I didn't shower in Middle Schooler because I was a late bloomer. It would have been cruel as hell to me to force me into that situation.

    By the time I was in high school I was a star athlete, but didn't shower because I didn't have the biggest pecker. Two lanky dudes were packing serious heat and I didn't feel comfortable being a grower who was less than the best. My guess is that this self-awareness that one does not have king dong is a common reason that communal showering has fallen.

    Our society is governed by masculine hero worship. It will be the same in locker room. Here is an article, evidently from a gay perspective, that argues just that: http://www.outsports.com/2014/3/17/5515302/penis-size-matters-locker-room-gay-straight-study

    Basically, for men at least, you need huge muscle, a big wang and massive cockiness otherwise you are incomplete. Since few dudes have all of the above, few dudes want to shower communally. Even if you are the massively muscled man, but have a normal appendage, then in comes some dweeb with a giant phallus and your masculinity is instantly rendered void. Good luck with that. I skipped a D1A sports scholarship over this very issue. Massive hangup, but I am sure I am not the only one suffering from it.

    In my view, it is not fear of homosexuality that has driven away communal showering, but rather society's shift towards hero worship wherein >95% of us come up short.

    In my view, it is not fear of homosexuality that has driven away communal showering, but rather society’s shift towards hero worship wherein >95% of us come up short.

    You don’t think previous generations of men (the men of the Greatest Generation or Boomers, for instance) had to live up to the masculine ideal of their times?

    What “shift to hero worship” exists for your generation that didn’t exist for the previous one or two? Boys in the 40s and 40s looked at Charles Atlas ads in magazines all the time.

    My brother was 11 years older than I, a star basketball player and a popular kid, and when he was about 16/17 or so, he used to ask me, his baby sister, all of 5 or 6, to take both my hands and squeeze his bicep as hard as I could or to poke my forefinger in it to see if it was hard as a rock. I’d do it and watch him smile when I, of course, said, “It’s a real muscle.” It was a common occurrence to see him standing bare-chested in front of his mirror flexing. He was tall and lean, then and for the rest of his life.

    I think he must have felt no different than males of later generations as far as needing and wanting to live up to some male ideal.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  130. @e
    That's a bridge too far: evangelicals might be the loudest voice against all gay every day (maybe they're simply braver than the people here, including me, who mock gay "marriage") but it's ridiculous to say the fundamentalists in this country have anything in common with Islamic fundies. It's remarkable how people who've not been raised among religious people find them neighborly, helpful, and giving when they ARE around them. They do live their faith.

    At this point in time, they seem to have a greater respect and understanding of the US Constitution than most other Americans.

    At this point in time, [evangelicsls] seem to have a greater respect and understanding of the US Constitution than most other Americans.

    Likewise, they may not believe in evolution, but they’re among the few Americans left who accept it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  131. @e
    This has been an edifying post and discussion for me. I had no idea that the younger generation of males in this country do not take showers in their schools and do not do so because they are uncomfortable disrobing. I'm a Boomer so the generation gap is showing itself, I guess. As young girls, my friends and I were angst-ridden about entering junior high (that was 7th grade for us) for many reasons, one of which was the shower/undressing thing. We handled it by simply keeping towels wrapped around us, some holding more tightly to the towel than others.

    However, the guys were totally w/out towels, weren't given one until they showered. I'm familiar with the towel slap and some (I'm sure not all) of the male locker room hi jinx as my boyfriend shared a lot of that with me, prodded by me, of course. However, as for male disrobing...my generation's males were simply used to it, I'd assume.

    I think a lot of things must be at work. In no particular order: 1) as someone said above, many kids, middle class kids, anyway, must be used to more privacy than kids of previous generations' 2) I'll add that in this more mobile population, many kids haven't grown up with one another and the kids next to them in gym class are virtual strangers; 3) many teens are in bad physical shape and they are ashamed of their bodies--male obesity in junior high and high school is out of control just as it is for girls; 4) the gay thing; 5) kids live in a much lower-trust society than that of my day 6) school personnel don't force kids to do ANYTHING today for fear of being sued

    Ms. .e, When I was seven or eight, the time I think that you make lifetime memories, my dad and my uncles were just seven years removed from their service in WWII. They had lived in the field or on ships for years with strangers. So when we went camping, using all army surplus goods, we peed on trees, crapped in the woods and swam in the nude. No big deal being naked with your adult family members and friends. I went to an all boys Catholic HS. I wasn’t a star athlete, but I did earn four varsity letters, no awards for participation back then. We wore a shirt, tie and sport coat at all times in school. Laundry was done once a week at our house. I didn’t get a clean dress shirt for each day of school. Hell, some guys wore the same sport coat for all four years, too big freshman year, too small senior year. My point is, you showered or you stunk. Not unusual to toss a stinking, fully dressed a-hole into the showers. Coach never said a thing. Our shower rooms, there were two, had twelve shower heads. They were crowded. I remember a guy peeing on the back of my leg in the shower, I bounced a full bar of Ivory soap off of his member ( trying to be polite here). End of that shit.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  132. @e
    Thanks for replying.

    I guess it's like everything else in life--people take advantage of others if given an inch.

    I think that in the "old days" that guy would've received a fist in his mouth.

    Does that not happen any more?

    Are the gay males you have run into in a gym "masculine" gays, the ones I keep hearing about but have NEVER met? Sure, there are those that lift weights for the meat market scene, perhaps, but I have a hard time believing they're tough guys. Like I said, never met a tough gay guy. Perhaps they frequent male gyms and that's why I've not met them?

    I yu h muubu ubbhbhb

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  133. @e
    Thanks for replying.

    I guess it's like everything else in life--people take advantage of others if given an inch.

    I think that in the "old days" that guy would've received a fist in his mouth.

    Does that not happen any more?

    Are the gay males you have run into in a gym "masculine" gays, the ones I keep hearing about but have NEVER met? Sure, there are those that lift weights for the meat market scene, perhaps, but I have a hard time believing they're tough guys. Like I said, never met a tough gay guy. Perhaps they frequent male gyms and that's why I've not met them?

    On average probably a lot less feminine than most gays, which is to say slightly less masculine than most straight gym-goers.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  134. @Mr. Anon
    "And people would be healthier if they didn’t have to visit REI to walk over a mile, dress like Lance Armstrong to ride a bike, and disdain any activity that doesn’t require huge amounts of gear."

    Well said. I remember when people rode bicycles without dressing up like they were going to compete in an Olympic luge event or get shot out of a cannon.

    To be fair… any collision with a vehicle is likely to result in the death of the cyclist so it is dumb to ride regularly without high vis clothing. It is worth riding with a rear view mirror on your helmet too for the same reason… most wouldn’t feel comfortable driving a car with the mirrors gone, why tolerate it in a vehicle where steel vehicles with 10× your mass are approaching from behind all the time?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    I understand using a helmet and a bike-light and reflectors. That makes sense. The spandex bit is just vanity.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  135. @e
    Thanks for replying.

    I guess it's like everything else in life--people take advantage of others if given an inch.

    I think that in the "old days" that guy would've received a fist in his mouth.

    Does that not happen any more?

    Are the gay males you have run into in a gym "masculine" gays, the ones I keep hearing about but have NEVER met? Sure, there are those that lift weights for the meat market scene, perhaps, but I have a hard time believing they're tough guys. Like I said, never met a tough gay guy. Perhaps they frequent male gyms and that's why I've not met them?

    Oh, E, darling, ask any male veteran about he-man homos. (“Gay” just doesn’t seem to fit them.) Especially one who’s been stationed on a major base or in a large city. Until recently, they were closeted– out of discretion, not fear– but could be rather aggressive in an oblique, underground way. You were never sure if this fellow wanted to to be friends, or something “deeper”.

    Robert Oscar Lopez says that “don’t ask” was a lifesaver for softer gays who were tormented and sometimes raped by their tougher brethren. (Lopez is bi and half-Pinoy, so he may be speaking from experience.) “Telling” would win one release.

    I can see how a woman could go through life never meeting this type. Or perhaps you have.

    The 1971 All in the Family episode “Judging Books by Covers” features rugged Philip Carey as Archie’s old service mate who is eventually outed by Mike. Except for not making a pass at anyone, Carey nails down the type perfectly

    Read More
    • Replies: @e
    I do remember that very episode of All in the Family with Granny Goose Carey (unfair moniker, I suppose, as he was a decent character actor).

    I guess I'd have to concede they DO exist, but wouldn't you say their numbers are small among the gay pop?

    I was thinking more of the gay guys I know who are into being physically fit at all. Some lift weights, some play tennis or run 5Ks or hike, etc. but you don't find them enrolled in recreational basketball or flag football leagues, at least not the ones I know.

    Yes, you could be right: I might not have met the type, not having been in environments like the service in which they are more likely to be found.

    , @Steve Sailer
    General William Odom, former head of NSA, told me in 1999 that the military's main problem with homosexuals was with highly masculine ones. You didn't want your son's drill sergeant to be one.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  136. @WhatEvvs
    "is still filtered through modern “This isn’t gay, is it?” sensibilities:"

    Which is one of the reasons I hate American movies. Apart from the fact that most (well, virtually all) the movies suck, "this isn't gay" permeates them. Not to mention, gay references permeate most online criticism. Anytime you have more than one lad in a scene, there is going to be an obligatory "this isn't gay" in the movie, and a "this is gay" in some online twerp's review. I exaggerate, but only slightly.

    I just saw a wonderful Indian movie called "3 Idiots" that had so much touchy-feely between men it could never be remade in Hollywood. I'm glad of that because Hollywood would only fuck it up royally.

    Face it, this country is totally pornified and totally homosexualized. So Blowhard & Auster were right after all.

    I’ve seen that movie. I liked the scene where the Professor gives the wunderkind his pen, which he had earlier smugly suggested he could never find someone who would be worthy to receive.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  137. @Anonymous
    Socially dominant men like LBJ don't do it consciously. They do it naturally. And you're right that socially dominant men do that sort of thing for laughs and shock value. It also helps in assessing and testing underlings and other people. People are very shocked and flustered might be easy to push around; those not shocked might be more trustworthy with certain tasks.

    LBJ was a psychopath. Seriously. Even Bill Moyers said, surrpetitiously, that there was something wrong with him, and nobody would believe the truth.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  138. @Anonym
    To be fair... any collision with a vehicle is likely to result in the death of the cyclist so it is dumb to ride regularly without high vis clothing. It is worth riding with a rear view mirror on your helmet too for the same reason... most wouldn't feel comfortable driving a car with the mirrors gone, why tolerate it in a vehicle where steel vehicles with 10× your mass are approaching from behind all the time?

    I understand using a helmet and a bike-light and reflectors. That makes sense. The spandex bit is just vanity.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  139. @Peter Meyer
    Per Wikipedia, the YMCA used to allow/encourage/require men to swim nude up until the 1960s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nude_swimming#Indoor_pools

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess? But of course people were much less squeamish in those days. Foucault also wrote (to reiterate slumber_j) that less aggressive forms of pedophilia, and adolescent sexuality generally, were a minor concern in pre-modern times. So the village pervert showed his penis to an 11 year old girl...what's the big deal? Not until the rise of psychiatry and the asylum was this considered a pathology and a grave crime. And Foucault semi-advocated for the decriminalization of sexual relations between minors and adults:

    https://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/danger.htm

    Foucault and his line of thought were influential in the 70s, in Europe and elsewhere (and still today, amongst social scientists). Child pornography was legal in, e.g., progressive Sweden:

    http://www.icenews.is/2009/01/29/child-pornography-in-swedish-national-library/

    Just an example of how quickly and violently fads can reverse themselves. The present is fleeting, the future uncertain. The past is another country.

    It’d be a big deal to the child, I guarantee it. No matter what the era. Adult sexual bodies are weird and terrifying to children, at worst. At best they are repulsive. Just possibly, if they’ve grown up with nudity in the family (not sexual) they may be comfortable with it. But perverts might take it the wrong way, the foul intent of the pervert dumps mess on even a healthy child’s attitude. I’m talking child/adult, either sex.

    So no, I don’t think these things were ever taken lightly. Diaries from long ago record instances of childhood trauma and indignities, just as they do today on some social media. People were just more fatalistic. Life in general was more difficult in most ways.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  140. TWS says:
    @AnonAnon
    I graduated high school in upstate NY in1982. We had communal showers in our locker room. There were rumors that one day we'd have to take a group shower and the gym teacher would hand you a towel as you exited but I don't remember ever having to go through that. It was rumored that at least one of our gym/swim teachers was a lesbian- she was an old "Miss", had short hair, and had a butterfly tattoo on her back, which was super unusual back then. I definitely wasn't on board with a group shower at that age. I didn't have any body issues since I was thin, like nearly everyone back then, but I was a shy girl, and it seemed weird and an overreach for the school to mandate a shower for us. There's a lot of stuff schools did back then that I am glad is no longer allowed, like allowing fights on the playground and other physical bullying that teachers/admins turned a blind eye to.

    Human boys fight. It’s as natural as breathing. When you try to have zero tolerance for ‘horseplay’, ‘rough housing’ and ‘fighting’ and replace it with chemicals you mess up boys for life. We’ve evolved to knock each other around as boys and adolescents and adults used to fight too.

    It’s cathartic.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  141. @TangoMan
    A look back at CA in the JFK era

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fISgKl8dB3M

    This was Miami in the 60s. You can have communal showers when you’ve got strong-chinned lawmen like Detective John Sorenson laying down the law and making sure there’s no funny business going on:

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  142. We don’t do what the teachers and the schools say because they’ve demonstrated themselves to be utter idiots.

    Anyone who’s ever come up against any zero-tolerance policies of drugs or weapons, or policies about bullying, or been friends with or even known of someone who ran afoul of those policies, can recognize this as true. They’re not considered authorities because they were so demonstrably bad at it.

    That’s what I suspect is a major issue at the heart of the Catholic sexual abuse scandals. Sure, sexual abuse of kids makes people upset. But the other issue is that the problem was only worsened by treating people in the Church -and the Church itself – as sources of Authority with a capital A that couldn’t be questioned or challenged.

    People have always seemed to want authorities to direct their lives, and I half suspect that quite a few of our modern problems stem from people trying to find suitable authorities that they can believe in without exerting too much effort suppressing awareness of those authorities’ obvious limitations and failings.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  143. e says:
    @Reg Cæsar
    Oh, E, darling, ask any male veteran about he-man homos. ("Gay" just doesn't seem to fit them.) Especially one who's been stationed on a major base or in a large city. Until recently, they were closeted-- out of discretion, not fear-- but could be rather aggressive in an oblique, underground way. You were never sure if this fellow wanted to to be friends, or something "deeper".

    Robert Oscar Lopez says that "don't ask" was a lifesaver for softer gays who were tormented and sometimes raped by their tougher brethren. (Lopez is bi and half-Pinoy, so he may be speaking from experience.) "Telling" would win one release.

    I can see how a woman could go through life never meeting this type. Or perhaps you have.

    The 1971 All in the Family episode "Judging Books by Covers" features rugged Philip Carey as Archie's old service mate who is eventually outed by Mike. Except for not making a pass at anyone, Carey nails down the type perfectly

    I do remember that very episode of All in the Family with Granny Goose Carey (unfair moniker, I suppose, as he was a decent character actor).

    I guess I’d have to concede they DO exist, but wouldn’t you say their numbers are small among the gay pop?

    I was thinking more of the gay guys I know who are into being physically fit at all. Some lift weights, some play tennis or run 5Ks or hike, etc. but you don’t find them enrolled in recreational basketball or flag football leagues, at least not the ones I know.

    Yes, you could be right: I might not have met the type, not having been in environments like the service in which they are more likely to be found.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  144. @Peter Meyer
    Per Wikipedia, the YMCA used to allow/encourage/require men to swim nude up until the 1960s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nude_swimming#Indoor_pools

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess? But of course people were much less squeamish in those days. Foucault also wrote (to reiterate slumber_j) that less aggressive forms of pedophilia, and adolescent sexuality generally, were a minor concern in pre-modern times. So the village pervert showed his penis to an 11 year old girl...what's the big deal? Not until the rise of psychiatry and the asylum was this considered a pathology and a grave crime. And Foucault semi-advocated for the decriminalization of sexual relations between minors and adults:

    https://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/danger.htm

    Foucault and his line of thought were influential in the 70s, in Europe and elsewhere (and still today, amongst social scientists). Child pornography was legal in, e.g., progressive Sweden:

    http://www.icenews.is/2009/01/29/child-pornography-in-swedish-national-library/

    Just an example of how quickly and violently fads can reverse themselves. The present is fleeting, the future uncertain. The past is another country.

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess?

    Or more precisely, they made it next to impossible to detect the symptoms of various STDs that, prior to the chlorination of water, could be transmitted quite easily in a swimming pool. I’ve read that one of the duties of swim coaches was to visually examine students, discreetly, for any signs of an infection that might put other pool-users at risk.

    Of course, I rather suspect that this quite reasonable policy was ideal for homosexual pedophiles, too. Greater awareness of homosexuality likely was at least partially responsible for the abandonment of group swimming, combined with common chlorination.

    [edit] I still remember being surprised when browsing through some old high-school yearbooks owned by my uncle and aunt and coming across photos of the swim team, buck naked. I presume increases in body insecurity, as well as fears of pornographic interest, put a stop to that. Competition spectators were fully co-ed. I find it difficult to imagine being comfortable with that, but it seems to have been accepted at the time.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    It's hard to believe. I was both a competitive swimmer and sometime skinny-dipper. I think serious swimming in a birthday suit is very uncomfortable and occasionally painful.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  145. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Gato de la Biblioteca
    No doors on the stalls? Back in my junior high (grades 7-9, 1980-83) we didn't even have stalls. There was a row of shower heads on the wall, and that was it.

    You misread it – he meant no doors on the toilet stalls, not showers. That’s what my HS had too.

    But the girls had curtained shower stalls in the 70′s and 80′s in both my Atlanta schools.

    Both in HS and college, the men’s showers were a just big fat post with 5 sets of plumbing pointing radially outward. Multiple posts in one common shower room.

    Nobody cared, nobody stared.

    It’s really depressing America has gotten even more neurotic about body issues since then.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  146. Here’s another aspect: what’s the effect of pornography? Does liberation lead to winner take all outcomes that make most people feel worse about themselves?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  147. @Reg Cæsar
    Oh, E, darling, ask any male veteran about he-man homos. ("Gay" just doesn't seem to fit them.) Especially one who's been stationed on a major base or in a large city. Until recently, they were closeted-- out of discretion, not fear-- but could be rather aggressive in an oblique, underground way. You were never sure if this fellow wanted to to be friends, or something "deeper".

    Robert Oscar Lopez says that "don't ask" was a lifesaver for softer gays who were tormented and sometimes raped by their tougher brethren. (Lopez is bi and half-Pinoy, so he may be speaking from experience.) "Telling" would win one release.

    I can see how a woman could go through life never meeting this type. Or perhaps you have.

    The 1971 All in the Family episode "Judging Books by Covers" features rugged Philip Carey as Archie's old service mate who is eventually outed by Mike. Except for not making a pass at anyone, Carey nails down the type perfectly

    General William Odom, former head of NSA, told me in 1999 that the military’s main problem with homosexuals was with highly masculine ones. You didn’t want your son’s drill sergeant to be one.

    Read More
    • Replies: @5371
    The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany about 15 years ago (Meiwes, I think his name was) had been a drill sergeant in the Bundeswehr.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  148. RE: male bodies on display,

    In France, speedos are pretty much mandatory:

    So Alton Towers has banned embarrassingly titchy swimming trunks at its water park. But spare a thought for France, where the opposite is true: local authorities regularly force men to ditch their Bermudas and parade in skin-tight budgie-smugglers for the greater public good.

    In French public pools, from the racing lanes of Paris to the open-air lidos and water parks of the south, anything bigger than Speedos is banned and you must hoist yourself into a posing pouch as a civic requirement. French changing rooms are littered with the broken dreams of prudish males abroad who thought they could sneak in a few lengths without showing their contours.

    One Paris-based Irish journalist recalls how he attempted some early-morning back-stroke in a pair of standard Marks & Spencer navy swim shorts that came “about halfway down my thighs”. As he lowered himself into the shallow end, the pool attendant screamed that his oversized attire was outlawed. “I said they were being ridiculous and glided into the middle of the pool. A lifeguard jumped into the water after me, three other attendants fetched a big hook for fishing out drowning people and hauled me in. I had to come back in an unbelievably skimpy pair that were somehow acceptable, but bloody uncomfortable for me and anyone who had to look at them.”

    Why the enforced parading of Frenchmen’s bulges? “Hygiene,” says Emmanuel Dormois, a head pool attendant in Paris’s 11th arrondissement. “Small, tight trunks can only be used for swimming. Bermudas or bigger swimming shorts can be worn elsewhere all day, so could bring in sand, dust or other matter, disturbing the water quality. By banning them outright, we’re not forced to stand there measuring what can be defined as swimming shorts. I accept that some men feel very ill at ease wearing small trunks, but others don’t mind.”

    Similar reports of enforced Speedos come from traumatised English visitors to a Belgian water park where bigger swimming shorts were also banned.

    Yet on the comparative freedom of French beaches men’s crack-splitting tangas and tight nylon slips have gone out of fashion. The smallest tasteful covering is what French stylists call the “boxer” trunk, tight, Daniel Craig-style mini-shorts that look less like ladies’ knickers. Not that public pool rules are never challenged. A feminist group has staged topless protests for the right of women to wear only bikini bottoms in line with men. Others argue that if bald men have to wear swimming hats how come others don’t have to shave off their beards? And so the debate continues.

    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2009/aug/12/speedos-fashion

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  149. meh says:

    Interesting. Prior to high school I went to a small private school that did not have locker rooms or showers.

    I went to a public high school in northern California circa 1980-84, and although they had a locker room for changing into gym clothes, and showers, no one used the showers. Ever. It had simply gone out of use by 1980, at least for gym classes. I suppose it might have still been used by the school sports teams. But not by regular students in gym class.

    Students must have stopped using the showers in the 1970s, probably because the school stopped forcing them to. I imagine there was a slackening of discipline in that era and the school gym teachers couldn’t/wouldn’t force anyone to use the showers if they didn’t want to, so students stopped using them.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  150. @PatrickH
    Yes. Remarkably enough, the most infamous of raging feminists, Andrea Dworkin (d. 2005), supported the legalization of sexual relations between children and adults. She was only dissuaded from doing so by the now less infamous but equally raging feminist Mary Daly (d. 2010), who said no, no, this messes children up dreadfully and with lasting consequences; the evidence is coming in now that it's not so taboo to talk about it.

    I suspect we're all lucky as a society that Daly was so fierce in her objections, because if the legalization of child sex had become part of feminist doctrine it would have become entrenched there, indefinitely.

    And no, I cannot find the original source of this exchange anywhere online or off it. I know that at one point I was able to do so, but have since lost track of it.

    For all the alleged biases of the Roman Catholic Church, that a daft crank like Mary Daly could teach 30+ years at Jesuit Boston College speaks volumes. She’d have probably been there until her death if she didn’t go full loon and refuse to accept male students in her “advanced” feminism classes.

    The irony of classes on female exclusion from power by the Patriarchy practicing exclusion was obviously lost on her.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Hibernian
    The Jesuit Order was suppressed twice by the Pope, once in the late 18th and/or early 19th century, and relatively recently by John Paul. They began by stressing education and understanding of other cultures in order to propagate the Faith and fight heresy, and ended up for the most part going native and becoming heretics themselves.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  151. When I went to high school the sixies, the big issue was that the water was cold. We all went the showers for a few seconds to get wet and then get out. In winter, this was an ordeal. I presumed everybody showered. I do not remember anyone nicknamed “stinky.” Maybe it is different when you are young. During the summer vacation, I would go three or four days without showering and no one noticed. As a middle age adult, if I do not shower in the morning, I stink by lunchme.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  152. jb says:
    @leftist conservative


    What strikes me is how fast the change was! It would be interesting to get more information from gym teachers about precisely when things started to change, since that might help pin down what the driver was.
     
    The rapid shift from communalism to neopuritanism coincided precisely with a shift in the ability of teachers to enforce classroom discipline. I lived in a town in west texas in the sixties and early seventies. That town was almost completely segregated between latino and white until the early seventies. Classroom discipline was quite strong back then, and students could be paddled right in front of the classroom. Thus, classrooms were calm.

    When I moved to san antonio in the early seventies, I attended a large high school that had been recently racially integrated. Once the racial integration took place, classroom discipline broke down. The teachers and school admin were afraid of blacks filing racial discrimination complaints against them. And so the blacks could raise hell in the classroom.

    That same fear of black complaints still plagues america--in many gov't agencies even today, management is afraid of black bias complaints and will not make blacks work, but will make whites do the work of blacks.

    Homogeneity breeds trust. Heterogeneity breeds mistrust and conflict.

    The rapid shift from communalism to neopuritanism coincided precisely with a shift in the ability of teachers to enforce classroom discipline.

    I don’t know about this. The college town high school I went to (I graduated in the early 70′s) was full of the well behaved white children of professors and professionals, along with a significant black minority (maybe 10 percent) that was dangerous and disruptive in the usual way, and to the best of my knowledge had always been so. This being a college town (a major university actually), it had already absorbed the full force of the radical 60′s, and the teachers were already afraid to discipline blacks for fear of accusations of racism. Yet I remember no hint of what you usefully term “neopuritanism.” (I don’t remember it in college either, or in graduate school, where even in the 80′s you showered in a big room with a tile floor and shower faucets coming out of the wall, and no stalls at all, but since these were much more elite institutions than my high school they don’t really count against your thesis).

    My own suspicion is that it had more to do with the sexualization of our culture, with aggressive gay activism, and with the pedophilia panic. But that’s just a suspicion, which is why it would be interesting to have hard data from high schools across the country telling us precisely when students stopped showering. But you’d need to interview a lot of old gym teachers, so it would be quite a project, and it’s hard to see whose agenda would be advanced by the information. So it probably won’t happen.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  153. @Brutusale
    For all the alleged biases of the Roman Catholic Church, that a daft crank like Mary Daly could teach 30+ years at Jesuit Boston College speaks volumes. She'd have probably been there until her death if she didn't go full loon and refuse to accept male students in her "advanced" feminism classes.

    The irony of classes on female exclusion from power by the Patriarchy practicing exclusion was obviously lost on her.

    The Jesuit Order was suppressed twice by the Pope, once in the late 18th and/or early 19th century, and relatively recently by John Paul. They began by stressing education and understanding of other cultures in order to propagate the Faith and fight heresy, and ended up for the most part going native and becoming heretics themselves.

    Read More
    • Replies: @James Kabala
    The suppression of the Jesuits in 1774 was done for political reasons - the Pope acceded to the wishes of monarchs who resented Jesuit power. It lasted about 40 years.

    John Paul had disputes with the Jesuits, but they live on and still run 30+ colleges in the U.S.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  154. @Steve Sailer
    General William Odom, former head of NSA, told me in 1999 that the military's main problem with homosexuals was with highly masculine ones. You didn't want your son's drill sergeant to be one.

    The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany about 15 years ago (Meiwes, I think his name was) had been a drill sergeant in the Bundeswehr.

    Read More
    • Replies: @HA
    "The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany..."

    I'm going to take your word for it, since on topics such as this, you're clearly something of an expert.

    Explains a lot, actually.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  155. @The Last Real Calvinist
    I was in jr high/high school from 1978-84, and we did group showers, and thought little about it. I hadn't even realized something like this would drop out of favor!

    I can confirm that the Japanese are not too worried about group nudity. Mrs Calvinist and I both like hot springs, so on our trips to Japan we always try to visit some. Many are sex-segregated, and once you're past the locker room door, it's nudity all the way. Everybody first needs to shower thoroughly, usually in a big open bathroom, and then not a stitch of clothing is allowed in the bathing areas, which remain single-sex. A very tall white man like me gets a few odd looks, but I've never had too much trouble. Having said that, there are supposed to be places that don't allow foreigners, I guess since seeing them in such circumstances would be considered too much for the usual customers to deal with.

    The initially-disconcerting thing about these places is that the locker room attendants, even on the men's side, are often older women, so you'd better be prepared.

    There are also co-ed places, but they require swimsuits to be worn.

    China has plenty of hot springs as well, but they tend to be co-ed, again with swimsuits, although in the single-sex locker rooms there are no attempts to hide nudity.

    This is changing. Younger generations don’t like public baths so much, and many are starting to prefer showers over baths in general. Public nudity or semi-nudity has a long history in Japan. There are some schools that still preserve strange rituals like forcing boys to swim in the ocean in fundoshi, or traditional underwear.

    As more foreigners and immigrants are brought into the country, I expect many of these traditions will start disappearing.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  156. @Melendwyr

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess?
     
    Or more precisely, they made it next to impossible to detect the symptoms of various STDs that, prior to the chlorination of water, could be transmitted quite easily in a swimming pool. I've read that one of the duties of swim coaches was to visually examine students, discreetly, for any signs of an infection that might put other pool-users at risk.

    Of course, I rather suspect that this quite reasonable policy was ideal for homosexual pedophiles, too. Greater awareness of homosexuality likely was at least partially responsible for the abandonment of group swimming, combined with common chlorination.

    [edit] I still remember being surprised when browsing through some old high-school yearbooks owned by my uncle and aunt and coming across photos of the swim team, buck naked. I presume increases in body insecurity, as well as fears of pornographic interest, put a stop to that. Competition spectators were fully co-ed. I find it difficult to imagine being comfortable with that, but it seems to have been accepted at the time.

    It’s hard to believe. I was both a competitive swimmer and sometime skinny-dipper. I think serious swimming in a birthday suit is very uncomfortable and occasionally painful.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  157. @Hibernian
    The Jesuit Order was suppressed twice by the Pope, once in the late 18th and/or early 19th century, and relatively recently by John Paul. They began by stressing education and understanding of other cultures in order to propagate the Faith and fight heresy, and ended up for the most part going native and becoming heretics themselves.

    The suppression of the Jesuits in 1774 was done for political reasons – the Pope acceded to the wishes of monarchs who resented Jesuit power. It lasted about 40 years.

    John Paul had disputes with the Jesuits, but they live on and still run 30+ colleges in the U.S.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Hibernian
    They run colleges that aspire to be Catholic Harvards, with all of the political correctness that entails. John Paul took away their power to elect their own superior for awhile, then they regained it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  158. @James Kabala
    The suppression of the Jesuits in 1774 was done for political reasons - the Pope acceded to the wishes of monarchs who resented Jesuit power. It lasted about 40 years.

    John Paul had disputes with the Jesuits, but they live on and still run 30+ colleges in the U.S.

    They run colleges that aspire to be Catholic Harvards, with all of the political correctness that entails. John Paul took away their power to elect their own superior for awhile, then they regained it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  159. Maybe kids just don’t like being treated like cattle anymore. I understand the reason for it in the military, but dehumanization is unnecessary in the average life.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  160. Mike Zwick [AKA "Dahinda"] says:
    @slumber_j
    A certain Miss Fox, the wizened and presumably lesbian head gym teacher at Hinsdale Junior High School, due west of Chicago, was locally famous in the mid-Seventies for standing sentry outside the girls' showers there and running her index finger down the girls' bodies to make sure they'd dried themselves adequately after bathing. My sister found it creepy, unsurprisingly, as did the other girls. The parents knew about it and as far as I know did nothing.

    Different times, I guess.

    I went to another West Suburban Chicago Area high school where the male gym teacher, and wrestling coach (not Hastert), would make kids do push ups in the nude in front of him if he determined that they were goofing off in the shower. All the other gym teachers would sneak off to the teacher’s lounge after class but this teacher would wander around in the locker room.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  161. @Peter Meyer
    Per Wikipedia, the YMCA used to allow/encourage/require men to swim nude up until the 1960s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nude_swimming#Indoor_pools

    Swimsuits were considered unsanitary I guess? But of course people were much less squeamish in those days. Foucault also wrote (to reiterate slumber_j) that less aggressive forms of pedophilia, and adolescent sexuality generally, were a minor concern in pre-modern times. So the village pervert showed his penis to an 11 year old girl...what's the big deal? Not until the rise of psychiatry and the asylum was this considered a pathology and a grave crime. And Foucault semi-advocated for the decriminalization of sexual relations between minors and adults:

    https://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/danger.htm

    Foucault and his line of thought were influential in the 70s, in Europe and elsewhere (and still today, amongst social scientists). Child pornography was legal in, e.g., progressive Sweden:

    http://www.icenews.is/2009/01/29/child-pornography-in-swedish-national-library/

    Just an example of how quickly and violently fads can reverse themselves. The present is fleeting, the future uncertain. The past is another country.

    I took swimming lessons at the YMCA in the 60 and we did it in the nude. I thought it was a bit weird, and the diving board could be a problem, but I had no choice.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  162. @5371
    The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany about 15 years ago (Meiwes, I think his name was) had been a drill sergeant in the Bundeswehr.

    “The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany…”

    I’m going to take your word for it, since on topics such as this, you’re clearly something of an expert.

    Explains a lot, actually.

    Read More
    • Replies: @5371
    Short of new material, eh, sockpuppeteer?
    , @Anonymous Nephew
    Seems a tad gratuitous, that. I thought the information about the cannibal was interesting and relevant to Steve's comment.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  163. Ian says:
    @Formerly CARealist
    Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don't have to go through the day smelling other people's stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    I went to elementary and middle school in the late 80′s and 90′s in Detroit, and we had bathroom stalls with no doors on them. I generally avoided using them, but every once in a while, I had no choice. I remember one time being at the school after hours waiting for my ride and really having to go. I held out for as long as possible until I could no longer. I figured that I should be safe since there were hardly any people left in the building at that point. So I went, only to have the janitor come in, walk right by the stall I was in, and then turn to me and say, “hello”. I was mortified.

    I graduated high school in 2000. We were required to take communal showers there after gym class. I remember feeling awkward about it the first day of freshman year, but after a couple times, it quickly seemed normal. My vague impression (to use one of Steve’s favorite phrases) was that it was similar with the other boys. We would typically joke around (and sometimes even sing) while showering.

    I also played for city travel hockey teams growing up. Up until about age 15-16, everyone waited till he got home to shower. At age 16-18 though, I and most of my teammates (though not all) would use the locker room showers, some of which were communal, depending on the arena.

    However, from this thread, it seems like my experience was not the norm for someone from my age.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  164. @HA
    "The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany..."

    I'm going to take your word for it, since on topics such as this, you're clearly something of an expert.

    Explains a lot, actually.

    Short of new material, eh, sockpuppeteer?

    Read More
    • Replies: @HA
    "Short of new material, eh, sockpuppeteer?"

    That's up to you -- let’s hope so. I’m not a fan of your evident dismemberment/mutilation fixation, but it is arguably less disturbing than your previous reliance on masturbating children as your metaphor of choice.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  165. @Formerly CARealist
    Oh wow, another installment of WHY TO HOMESCHOOL. You get to shower alone, and you don't have to go through the day smelling other people's stinking sweat.

    Another point. I remember seeing the boys bathroom without doors on the stalls. IOW the guys had to sit in full view of others. What the heck was that all about? Does that still occur or are all the stalls private now?

    Keep on homeschooling folks.

    Homeschooling as in deferring having children and limiting their numbers or at least your career options and income? Not a good thing for the kind of people who are actually capable of homeschooling, let alone the nation.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  166. I’ve never had a communal shower, but they used to be ubiquitous and are still widely practiced. There were no showers for after gym at my small town school, except for the ones in the dormitory for students from out of town, which were communal. I missed mandatory military service by a few years, which would have had communal showers. During my University days, a lot of the student dorms were older and had only communal showers and stall toilets. The situations varied by gender and from dorm to dorm. You could find a dorm with shower cubicles for the ladies especially, or a simple room with many shower heads for the guys. There was even a co-ed dormitory with public showers, but those were cubicles. Myself, I never had to go through the experience, but a lot of people who did were very prudish about it, especially the girls (taking turns or showering at odd hours). Dunno about the older generations… can’t imagine anyone ever asking them about that, but I’m sure the answer would be different, just like people here emphasize the generational divide in the US. My grades were very high so I got a room with its own complete bathroom in the better dormitories, which I shared with only three roommates. I found it a blessing, but, looking back, I might have enjoyed a memory or two of chance encounters at the co-ed showers. I kept thinking of a remote controlled car with a camera like in Revenge of the Nerds.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  167. @TangoMan
    A look back at CA in the JFK era

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fISgKl8dB3M

    Here’s the top comment on that video:

    “So what were the girls doing at the same time? (And were they dressed as scantily?) Also don’t see a single non-white kid in here.”

    So much resentment. What’s his problem?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  168. @5371
    Short of new material, eh, sockpuppeteer?

    “Short of new material, eh, sockpuppeteer?”

    That’s up to you — let’s hope so. I’m not a fan of your evident dismemberment/mutilation fixation, but it is arguably less disturbing than your previous reliance on masturbating children as your metaphor of choice.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  169. @HA
    "The cannibal homo in a famous case in Germany..."

    I'm going to take your word for it, since on topics such as this, you're clearly something of an expert.

    Explains a lot, actually.

    Seems a tad gratuitous, that. I thought the information about the cannibal was interesting and relevant to Steve’s comment.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to All Steve Sailer Comments via RSS
PastClassics
The major media overlooked Communist spies and Madoff’s fraud. What are they missing today?
The “war hero” candidate buried information about POWs left behind in Vietnam.
What Was John McCain's True Wartime Record in Vietnam?
The evidence is clear — but often ignored