(With apologies to Armistead Maupin.) A correspondent writes:
I work out at a gym off campus. I have often seen some of my colleagues and one of my graduate students in various states of undress, including nudity. Likewise, they have seen me the same way. While I am generally very comfortable being naked in front of others, I have found that these encounters make me slightly uncomfortable. They also make me laugh. What is the etiquette for seeing your colleagues and your students naked in the gym locker room? I sure could use some advice.
Heh. I’ve never been so grateful for my 33 mile commute as I am today!
Dear readers, let me throw this one out to you. While I’ve lived in college towns for the past 14 years, they weren’t the towns where my university was located, so while I appreciate that this is a problem for many uni faculty and students, I’m not the best person to answer this question. (Come to think of it, I’ve never regularly showered anywhere but home. I’m a runner–I don’t need a gym.) What do you think? What is locker-room etiquette anyway, besides “don’t stare” and/or “acknowledge your colleague/student but only above the collar bone?”
Related but not immediately relevant confession: I’m just not into all of the body care in public facilities that’s become nearly de rigeur over the past decade. What’s with all the spas and waxing everywhere, all of the time? It’s like middle-class women are all ancient Romans, getting oiled up and wiped down by strigil-wielding attendants. Thanks, but no thanks!