Just Because You Can….
Recently, while our husbands were away on a short Mancation, a friend and I decided to treat our kids to a weekend at Great Wolf Lodge.
If you’ve never heard of it, Great Wolf Lodge is basically Las Vegas for kids. The hotel chain boasts an expansive indoor water park, complete with multiple slides, a wave pool and a kid friendly jacuzzi. Once you’re sufficiently water logged, they have a wide variety of other activities guaranteed to keep your kids engaged and entertained until you all literally drop from exhaustion.
For me, the best thing about places like this, is the people watching. If I didn’t have three kids to keep alive, I’d happily spend an entire day tucked away in a corner of the water park observing the other guests. It’s a melting pot of people from all walks of life….contained together for the duration of their stay….and it makes for some great social observations.
On this particular trip, it was a bikini clad mom that really caught my attention. Personally, I believe that if you are comfortable and confidant enough to wear an itty-bitty, teensie-weensie, yellow, polka-dot bikini….then you should go right on ahead and do so. This isn’t about which body types should or should not be wearing a two-piece. It’s more about whether or not that choice in swimwear is appropriate for the venue….at least in it’s ittiest-bittiest of versions.
Bikini mom first caught my eye when she clicked past me wearing a pair of those Dr. Scholls original platform sandals. The kind with the wooden soles and leather strap topped with a metal buckle. When I saw the shoes, my first thought was, “Hey! Penny from Dirty Dancing had those shoes!”
Then I noticed the rest of her and my next thought was, “Hey, Eve constructed something like that in the Garden of Eden!”
Bikini mom was clad in a very skimpy two piece that left little to the imagination. Let’s just say, if I was curious as to whether or not she waxed….I didn’t have to be curious for long.
The top half of her suit appeared to be made of dental floss and two diamond shaped, Girl Scout Archery badges that concealed just enough of her breasts so as not to violate the rules of the establishment: Bathing suits are required for entry into the pool.
The bottom was constructed of the same thin thread and minuscule amount of material as the top and sat dangerously low beneath her hip bones in front. The back was cut, Brazilian style, so that it wasn’t exactly a thong….since the strip that ran perpendicular down the crack of her ass was just wide enough to conceal her butt hole anytime she felt the need to bend and snap….which happened with far more frequency than you might think.
While I did consider the suit to be a bit much, given that the general clientele within the water park were kids ranging in age from infants and toddlers to teenagers, I was more troubled by the lack of common sense employed when choosing such a suit….given that the attractions at the water park are such that reliable coverage should be a priority….you would think. It seemed to be the kind of suit best worn while lying supine on a lounge chair, not frolicking in a wave pool, or being shot out of a tube slide.
The first time I witnessed her wardrobe malfunction, my friend and I had just corralled the kids for dinner. As everyone settled into their chairs at the pool, waiting for us to pass out pizza, we were all drawn toward the sound of joyful screeching from the vicinity of the wave pool and just in time to see bikini-mom burst from the water, a la Ariel from the Little Mermaid.
Only, unlike Ariel’s seashell top that remained firmly in place….because Disney knows their audience….one of bikini mom’s boobs dislodged from it’s tenuous cover causing her to exclaim in surprise….in that way people have of exclaiming in surprise when they aren’t actually surprised at all.
While she tucked herself back into her top, continuing to draw as much attention to herself as possible, the waves thrashed at her delicate suit and the bottom half shifted about haphazardly, exposing so much I felt guilty not offering her at least a dollar for the show.
I wavered between wanting to point and laugh hysterically and wanting to toss her a beach towel and a reminder that she was in a place that offers “splashin’ fun for the little one’s” and not a hedonism resort somewhere in the Caribbean.
Seriously, when I planned this little getaway, I hadn’t bargained on needing to include a conversation about female anatomy. My four year old son is convinced I pee out of my butt, because he can’t wrap his head around the fact that I don’t have a penis. Neither of us is ready to have a conversation that includes the words “Vulva” and “Urethral Opening.”
Then there’s my hormonally charged, fourteen-year-old step-son. The kid spends his, uh….private time….Googling “Big Boobs.” I know this because he wasn’t savvy enough to erase his search history and his mother practically castrated him when she discovered his research. For weeks my husband and I had to listen to her wail on about the degradation of her precious son because he’d seen a few online nipples. So you can image the hell that would have reigned down had she learned he’d been exposed to an anatomically altered, but otherwise correct, real-life Barbie Doll wearing break-away clothing. Furthermore, I was concerned the experience might be setting him up for some unrealistic expectations….I mean, how am I supposed to explain that not everyone bleaches her asshole?
I also had my twelve-year-old step-daughter to think about. She’s at a delicate age as it relates to her own development and her thoughts regarding body image. How was I to explain that typically, breasts don’t naturally resemble fully inflated basketballs and they don’t have the power to defy gravity?
Based on the horrified expressions of the other on-lookers, desperately trying to block their children’s view of the show, I wasn’t the only one having similar thoughts.
If the woman had just tucked tit and ran for a cover-up, I would have probably considered the entire debacle an innocent error in judgement, but she was clearly reveling in the attention and I pitied her for her desperation.
We didn’t remain in the water park too long after that, as the kids were itching to check-out the other activities, but throughout the time that remained, we were treated to several unrequested encores. A few times, I noticed other parents approach various staff members and based on their animated gestures in her direction, I assume they were lodging complaints. I just hoped this was her last hurrah and she’d be checking out in the morning.
No such luck. We ended up sharing the facilities with her all weekend, but for the most part, we all quit paying attention once the initial shock value had worn off and she was no longer all that interesting….kind of like the Kardashians.
However, we were pulled from our inattentional blindness momentarily, when it seemed as though she’d lost the entire bottom half of her suit in the Wolf Tail water slide. Everyone within view gasped, even the lifeguards who appeared to be frantically searching the churning waters for it, but it turned out the suit was just small enough to be inhaled by her nether regions. Using her fingers as excavation tools, she was able to retrieve it, while giggling and feigning shock.
This was apparently the final straw for the resort staff. Though I wasn’t close enough to hear the entire conversation, I did hear one staff member say, “Fully stocked swim shop” as he gestured toward the store just outside the pools entrance and I heard bikini mom say, “Jealous” and “Swim dress,” in what I assume was an attempt to defend her suit choice and lodge a jab at the other female patrons.
Then I was kind of mad. While I couldn’t speak for anyone else, I could honestly say I wasn’t envious of a woman so seemingly desperate for attention, she was willing to flounce her goodies in front of a bunch of children and families. If the suit stayed taut, I might have thought it a bit risqué, but otherwise unremarkable.
The issue wasn’t jealousy, it was her general lack of respect for the rest of us. It’s not like we were hanging out in the Grotto at the Playboy Mansion. We were at a child-centric theme park, so I don’t think it was unreasonable to expect a G-rated experience….PG13 at worst.
I’m not sure why she, or anyone, would choose the swim suit she did. Perhaps donning barely there clothing is a form of self-expression? Maybe it’s the same as showing off a pure bred at the Westminster Kennel Club dog show? Or maybe it comes from an unfulfilled need for attention?
Whatever the reason, there is a time and a place for everything. Like the Byrds so wisely sang:
To everything (turn, turn, turn)
There is a season (turn, turn, turn)
And a time to every purpose, under heaven
A time to build up, a time to break down
A time to dance, a time to mourn
A time to cast away stones (clothes), a time to gather stones (clothes) together….and show some class.
Seriously, if you are so scantily and unreliably clad, that I could perform a Pap Smear while you cavort about….you’ve gone too far.
Moral of the story: Get some (morals)