les baigneurs

October 24, 2017

Last week, while swimming, it occurred to me how utterly bizarre it is to be sharing a large tank of water with strangers. I thought about all our bodies –– fleshy, plump, boney, hairy ––  floating in the same salty water. I thought about how few other situations bring us as close to next to naked strangers. Saunas, beaches, Bikram, orgies. I like how swimming is both communal, and solitary. We’re in the same pool, but all moving to our own rhythm. Sometimes, when I see my fellow swimmers out in the world, on a streetcar or at the supermarket, I barely recognize them. How different we all look with our clothes on. We smile at each other, and walk on.

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