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Wayne Post
  • Anne Palumbo: An unexpected challenge of carefree summer

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    Every summer, right around now, I feel a real kinship with fellow Northerners who are slow to show some skin.

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    Every summer, right around now, I feel a real kinship with fellow Northerners who are slow to show some skin.
    We "reluctants" wear jeans in the heat, long sleeved shirts when a tank would do and roomy sweaters at high noon.
    It's not that we're anti-skin; it's more that we need time to reintroduce our skin to society...our pasty, washed-out, wintry skin.   
    Premature skin exposure can be traumatic for folks like us. One slip-up can set us back weeks. I know what I'm talking about, too, having been chastised by my own family for possessing the pallor of a corpse when I dared to wear capris a few weeks ago.  
    It's why I aim for a gradual skin rollout that begins in mid-July.  By then, I'm physically and emotionally ready for whatever comes my way.
    Physically, my translucent winter skin will have toughened up to the point where it can withstand some exposure.  Nothing extensive, mind you – a forearm here, an ankle there – but enough to say to the world, "I'm not dead, honest."  
    As the summer progresses, I do get more daring in my exposure, revealing an occasional shoulder, perhaps a bit of knee if I'm feeling exceptionally confident.  
    You will never see me in those short shorts, however, the ones that seem to be the rage among young females.  Clearly, these gals have no qualms about skin exposure.  Do I sound jealous?  I'm not.  But do I wish they would stop bending over to pick up dropped pennies?  Yes, I do.
    I'm also physically ready to lighten my clothing load because, by then, I can't take the heat any longer.  What was tolerable in June is no longer tolerable in July.  Not sweating like a cooked goose trumps feeling like a chaste mummy.
    Emotionally, I'm game to show some skin because of the camaraderie I feel among other "reluctants" who are braving exposure.  I don't know how, but I can always spot someone who’s uncomfortable in their own exposed skin.  Maybe it’s the way they keep yanking and pulling and readjusting their clothing that gives them away.   Or perhaps it’s the bed linens they’ve buried themselves in at Bed, Bath & Beyond.
    Does this sound odd?  Not wanting to traipse around in a hankie and a couple of coffee filters during the dog days of summer?  I’m sure it must to all you free spirits who can’t wait to shuck your weighty winter garb for skimpier fare.  But for some of us, especially those of us raised in the North, summer is a real challenge.  We miss our multiple layers and all the coverage they so lovingly afford.   Cold weather can’t come soon enough!
    Page 2 of 2 - Next week:  Why Speedo-wearers shouldn’t pick up dropped pennies either.
     
     
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