Thoughts after 'testing' a planned outfit (which really means dancing around in front of the mirror a bit)
Despite having been bitten in tender places by fire-ants every single year I've gone up there, I am once AGAIN planning an outfit for Tropical Fruits that involves hot-pants. I believe it was 2005/2006 that I came very close to sitting in the medical tent at the stroke of midnight due to an ant bite on the very undercurve off my buttcheek- escaped with only minutes to spare and watched the fireworks and cheered the year's turn with an ice-pack clutched to my bum. I'm pretty sure I swore I'd be wearing something that covered my arse the following year, but 2006/2007 saw me in another little pinafore thing with short-shorts underneath. Two bites that year, none on my bum thank goodness but one on the underside of my pinky toe. Demonic bloody ants.
I seem to have two absolute standards in costuming: hot-pants and toplessness. Someone said once "I didn't realise you were one of those girls who always had her top off" and I thought did you not notice my breasts at every single dance party I've been at since 2002?
It is impossible to talk about toplessness without becoming defensive against perceptions or realities of exhibitionism (and what that even means), without launching into tirades about the arbitrary sexualisation of female body parts. If I'm planning on dancing like a motherfucker (which one would assume I am, given the money I've spent on the ticket and the fact that I'll be wearing decidedly practical shoes), then it is far, far more comfortable not to have to deal with any of the straps, wires, hoists or torture devices designed to protect my 'modesty'. My breasts are a whole lot less irritating if I just let them do their own thing, and possibly because I don't find them a very sexually interesting part of my body, I tend to forget there's even anything odd about having them out. When people refer to them or stare at them it takes me a minute to remember what they're on about. Oh? Them? Yeah. Woo, breasts. So, moving on...
I forget a lot about the dictates of modesty, and forget a bit as well about the signifiers given off by the exposure of female skin. I'm happiest on a hot dance floor in not a lot of clothing, so that's what I wear. It completely throws me when this appears to be titillating to people ('you look hot, nice outfit' is quite a different response to some sort of 'phwoar, it's female and on display, it must be for my loud enjoyment'- that grosses me the fuck out and can we try to bring a little less patriarchy into our happy queer dance parties please?). Sometimes I like to pretend that it's possible to enjoy my body, to enjoy doing things in it, without wearing every single bit of cultural baggage about my gender on top of it.