1950 Memories of Suburban Adventures

Home » 1 - Exposed (1950-1954) » 3 - Accidental Nakedness » Accidental Nakedness

Accidental Nakedness

Sometimes, life plays a dirty trick by shining a beacon of exposure in our direction. In my case, the exposure came in the form of accidental nakedness.

Mom pulled David and me in a wagon down our dirt road in Welch Hollow. The vibration tenderized our hineys and made it fun to say shaky ahhhs. Our chorus blended with the wagon wheels as they rhythmically crunched over stones.

We reached Dad’s cousin’s house and saw another family with children outside visiting. The adults sat in folding chairs, hiding in the shade of a huge maple tree.

“Giggy, come on over,” they called.

Mom pulled us across the road and parked our wagon.

A large galvanized wash basin sat in the driveway, surrounded by laughing and shrieking kids. It sloshed with water warmed by the sun and a little pee. David and I took off our shoes and socks, and rushed to join them.

David and me, swimming with the grandchildren of Bochi's neighbor (Mrs. Sexton).

David and me, swimming with the grandchildren of Bochi’s neighbor (Mrs. Sexton).

I hopped in and out of the tub with my bare feet, getting wet up to my knees. The other kids wore bathing suits, and had a lot more fun splashing each other and taking turns pretending to take a bath.

I ran over to Mom and tugged on her arm. “David and I want to get wet all over. Can we take off our clothes and play in our underwear?”

“No. It isn’t appropriate in mixed company,” answered Mom. “Anyway, we can’t stay too long. I have to get supper ready for Daddy.”

“I want to pretend to take a bath.”

David and me taking a real bath.

David and me taking a real bath.

“Stop your whining or we’ll leave now.”

I heard that line a lot. I knew Mom meant it because I tested her a few times. I sat by the driveway, pouting. An older girl (age seven) walked over and squatted in front of me.

“I think they keep extra suits in the garage,” she said. “That’s where I got mine.”

I took an indirect route away from Mom’s line of vision. A folding clothes rack made of wooden dowels (like the one in our bathroom at home) displayed several bathing suits. I picked the prettiest one with faded polka dots.

The garage had no door and no private place to change. I ducked inside a lean-to against the outside of their garage and stripped off my clothes. I stood holding the suit, figuring out which opening was the head-hole and which were for feet, when Mom’s voice reached me.

“Mary Barbara, I said it’s time to go home.”

She must have been calling for a while because other voices joined in, and some were getting close. I was naked as a blue jay and a far cry from being appropriate for mixed company. I grabbed my discarded clothes and hid behind a pile of stacked boards and assorted junk. The calling became frantic, and so was I. If they’d stay away, then I could put my clothes back on.

Me with clothes still on.

Me with clothes still on.

“Mary, are you in here?” whispered the girl who told me about the bathing suit. “If you are, you better come out now.”

I crawled out, holding my clothes in front of me. Finally, I could change before anyone else saw me.

My underpants weren’t pulled up yet when she screamed, “I found her! And she’s bare-naked!”

The exposure should have served as an embarrassing lesson. Unfortunately, I was doomed to repeat accidental nakedness at a couple later dates.

Related posts: Amazing Discoveries/Visiting Planet Earth; Pandemonium Trail/Naked Again


Now it’s your turn: As a kid, did you have an accidentally naked experience?


© Mary Norton-Miller and 1950s Suburban Adventures, 2012 forward. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Mary Norton-Miller and 1950s Suburban Adventures with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


  1. Anonymous says:

    One of my favorites!!

  2. Whoopsy haaaa 🙂
    Well she should have let you play in your underwear I think – would have turned out much better 😉
    I think I was always frolicking in nicks or the nud to start with…

    • skinnyuz2b says:

      You’re right, it wasn’t my fault at all. We usually did play in undies. I think Mom’s hesitation was because the visitors were not well known.

  3. Claire says:

    Ha! Fantastic post… I can relate…!

  4. When I saw the title I just had to read it. You have the most vivid memories of any writer I know. You’re up there with Steinbeck and Doris Kearns. Have you ever read Wait Till Next Year? It’s about her and her dad. Anyway, love the pictures and the essay’s sweetness that splatters all across the page 🙂

    • skinnyuz2b says:

      Thanks, Susannah. I always thought I remembered more than my siblings because I was the oldest. Then I was in charge of my HS class 30th and 40th reunions Only 32 kids total. Each time, I wrote a ‘Who did this?’ quiz with answers on the back. I was amazed at all the ‘how do you remember all this’ comments. I suppose I was an observer.
      And you are more well read than anyone I know; yet another book to add to my reading list. And you know how much I love YOUR writing.

The Feedback Booth:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 239 other subscribers

Blog Stats

  • 19,175 hits

Copyright Notice

All Rights Reserved. Please contact me for any text and/or images.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 239 other subscribers
%d bloggers like this: