Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Underdressed for the Occasion

Do you have moments in your family history that probably shouldn't be recorded, much less publicly shared? Perhaps an incident that was neither acknowledged in the moment it happened, nor has it ever been discussed since?

Me neither.

Well, alright. I have one.

It was the summer of 2005. Katie’s side of the family was having a Family Reunion at a ranch in southern Utah. A few days prior to the official reunion many out-of-staters were flying into Las Vegas to stay with us for a day or so, and then driving from there up to the ranch. We thought this was great, as it allowed us some extra time with a handful of siblings and cousins.

It was a Sunday morning and you could hear the mayhem of a full house outside our bedroom doors. We had crammed several families into our home, many with small children, and we were all trying to get ready for church at the same time.

Katie was in front of the mirror in the master bathroom, blow-drying her hair, as I stepped out of the shower. Now, if you must know, we are pretty casual with our nakedness; and additionally, if you must know (you are so nosy!), sometimes I … well, I air-dry. There. I said it.

I suddenly realized that all my bathroom stuff (deodorant, hair gel, toothpaste, smell-good) was still in my racquetball bag from the day before. And my racquetball bag was not in the bathroom. Nope. It was on the bedroom floor, in front of the door. I strutted across the room and had my head buried in my bag as I pulled my stuff out of it… When abruptly, somebody knocked hard and deliberately on the door. THUD, THUD, THUD. (At least, that’s how it sounded to my naked ears.)

I tipped my head up and locked eyes with the doorknob. My heart stopped, my world went silent, and time froze. A single water drop from my hair ran down my face.

At this point, my brain told me I had two options. Option 1: Frantically yell, “DON’T COME IN!” Or Option 2: Remain silent and wait for them to go away. I went with Option 2 because I was confident that yelling “DON’T COME IN!” would immediately conjure up the image in this poor soul’s head of one Ken Craig standing less than three feet away, stark raving naked. And that image isn't doing anybody any favors.

I chose wrong.

Promptly, the doorknob gave and the door swung open!

As I saw it, at this point, I still had some options. 1. Push the door closed on their face. 2. Pull my bag off the floor and strategically place it like “so” (I’m showing you with my hands right now), or even 3. Jump behind the door!

But no. I chose Option 4: Jump into the open from where you’re standing, and spread your body as wide as possible as you sail across the room. Yes, jump like you are taking a bullet for the President of the United States, and that bullet simply must not pass by you; naked or not.

It probably looked more like the shot above; though in my mind, it was more like the photo below.

I closed my eyes as I leapt through clear and present danger, because I knew for sure that if this person and I made eye contact, our lives would forever be changed.

And before I landed, I heard a woman’s voice yell, “EEEEEEEEEK!” and the door slam.

I ran into the bathroom where Katie was still blow-drying her hair. “Your sister just saw me naked!” I reported, as if I was tattling on her.

“What?” answered Katie, with her head still under a blow-dryer.

“Your sister! She just saw me naked!”

“When?” she responded so calmly.

“Just NOW! A few seconds ago.”

“Oh… I’m sure she didn't mind.”

????????????????????????????? (This is where my brain just fell right out of the back of my head.)


“Just…I don’t know…you play racquetball…you’re fit…. I’m sure she didn't mind.”

I...(pointing wildly at my chest)…I MIND!”

“Were you walking around like that?”

“Yes, in our room!”

“She just walked in?”

“Well, she knocked first, but then walked in.”

“She just barged in without waiting for a response?”

“No; I didn't respond, because if I’d yelled not to come in then she would have imagined me naked!”

“Well, she doesn't have to imagine it anymore.”

“Who walks into a bedroom when the door is closed?! This is not my fault!”

“Isn't it?! She knocked! You don’t have to yell in a panicked voice! You can calmly respond, ‘Just a minute’ or ‘One second.’”

“Oh. Huh. Those both sound pretty great, actually. WHERE WERE YOU 20 SECONDS AGO!?”

I got dressed and finally, after reassuring myself that this would go away and there wasn't really any reason to discuss it further, I headed downstairs. On the way down I thought to myself, “Maybe it wasn't Katie’s sister that saw me after all. Maybe it was her cousin…”

For some completely irrational reason, I just knew I would feel better if it had been her cousin. I have absolutely no idea why. We were all similar ages, from similar backgrounds, and followed similar social norms of not being naked in public. But I sensed that if it had been her cousin, the two of us would be able to just laugh it off quicker. So I did what any normal individual in my situation would do.

I located Katie’s cousin in the living room, walked right up to her, and in a normal voice, just normally said, “Meredith, please tell me that you just saw me naked in my bedroom.”

She stared right back into my eyes with a widening smile, not even flinching, and said, “Nope.”

“Shoot,” I said back.

Well, I had successfully deduced who it was, and now, Meredith probably had, too. We agreed to never discuss it again. And I never brought it up with Katie’s sister either. And if she is reading this, please note, there is still no need to discuss anything. I’m fine. You’re fine. And I don’t keep my bathroom things in my racquetball bag anymore. Now let's all just get back to work. As you were.