Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Actors Don't Hunt in Packs

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  • Danielle,

    Well, perhaps she thought you were making a move, because you mentioned the commando thing? So she was deflecting said move. I dunno.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3623 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I think it would have been much more of a move if I'd just dropped my pants, as she had requested. But yes, perhaps pointing out that I was naked under my clothes could have been seen as a hint that I was uncomfortable, and she was just sparing me.

    Either way, I didn't get my legs examined, which I thought was the unprofessional bit. OK, perhaps I should have gone out and purchased some underwear just for the occasion, but I really wasn't anticipating it being a problem.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I found my purple suede fringed go-go boots, inherited from my husband's grandmother. Would they be Emma's Worst Shoe Nightmare?

    They sound FABulous.

    But mainly it's because of the Judgeypants thing. I think I need to harden up.

    I'm considering hiring myself out as a bodyguard to protect women from other women. I suspect I'd hardly ever have to actually say anything ("Hey, did you see that movie Heathers? Fuck that was funny. You're not, you're just a try-hard bitch."), it'd just be a matter of my presence giving someone else the confidence to go home dry. Or perhaps I'm just being overly optimistic thinking the fear of Judgeypants is much worse than the actual judging once everyone involved is over sixteen.

    I'm pretty sure the fear is worse than the judging when it comes to breast-feeding in public. In two years, I never received one negative comment or disapproving stare.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4328 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I'm considering hiring myself out as a bodyguard to protect women from other women.

    I'd never before considered that as part of the reason women head to the private rooms in teams.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Dinah Dunavan,

    I didn't know what "going commando" meant, until the recent post. So what has not having undies on got to do with your legs? Unless parts of you really hang low? The mind boggles at how uncomfortable that might be. (Also wondering what Arnie in a singlet and dirt has to do with no knickers, or maybe not...)

    I make a point these days of being unashamed in communal changing rooms to be a good example to young women. The ones that change in the toilet cubicles must have some seriously ugly deformities to make getting changed over a toilet worth it. Although the bikinis they come out in don't hide much so I'm baffled, and intrigued.

    Dunedin • Since Jun 2008 • 170 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    I didn't know what "going commando" meant, until the recent post. So what has not having undies on got to do with your legs?

    Taking them off would be an issue. Jeans don't go above the knee very easily.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    futzing around with getting changed under the cover of towels and school uniform.

    This came back to me last night during Outrageous Fortune, while watching Shane Cortese slide from under a sheet to under a towel with a smoothness that made me actually applaud.

    Which is miles better than US sitcoms, where even when a couple are in bed having just had sex, the man will be wearing a t-shirt. You can't even see male nipples on the telly before 9:30 any more.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4328 posts Report Reply

  • Dinah Dunavan,

    Which is miles better than US sitcoms, where even when a couple are in bed having just had sex, the man will be wearing a t-shirt.

    The last couple of lite comedies I have seen on DVD had the woman wearing a bra during sex! WTF! Even a nice lacy number aint gonna last the distance.

    Dunedin • Since Jun 2008 • 170 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    The ones that change in the toilet cubicles must have some seriously ugly deformities to make getting changed over a toilet worth it.

    I'm waiting for someone from the XV to come in and mention that it's social pressure, not ugly deformities that lead to women getting changed in private.

    *twiddles thumbs*

    Since Nov 2006 • 6148 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    The ones that change in the toilet cubicles must have some seriously ugly deformities to make getting changed over a toilet worth it.

    I'm waiting for someone from the XV to come in and mention that it's social pressure, not ugly deformities that lead to women getting changed in private.

    You called, Kyle?
    I, like Dinah, wander round nekkid in the gym changing room for all those women who don't like their own bodies.I like to think of it like I do my always complimenting other women on shoes/hair/perfume etc, as a public service. It saddens me that women feel judged - especially since, many times, it really is all in their own heads. (Do you hear me, Danielle?) Some may say seeing me naked is a very good advertisement for why women should always wear bras. I say feel the fear, and do it anyway. Tell yourself you're beautiful enough, and you get to believe it.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3121 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    (Also wondering what Arnie in a singlet and dirt has to do with no knickers, or maybe not...)

    I believe the phrase came from the custom of commandos in the tropics to not wear underpants because they actually increased hygiene problems. Curiously, Arnie did not go commando in Commando. He feels much more comfortable in undies.

    So what has not having undies on got to do with your legs?

    Well, I do have legs right up to my bum.

    Although the bikinis they come out in don't hide much so I'm baffled, and intrigued.

    Perhaps they do it to build up tension.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Although the bikinis they come out in don't hide much so I'm baffled, and intrigued.

    Or...maybe it is just social pressure/habit, and the deformities are in your imagination? Like society telling them that anything short of "perfect" body parts are deformities? Seems a bit of a stretch to assume otherwise.

    It saddens me that women feel judged - especially since, many times, it really is all in their own heads.

    Doesn't make it any less real, in a lot of ways. The trick is to remember, if you can, that it doesn't ultimately matter. (Or, like me, be so crap with any form of face-to-face communication other than verbal that anything short of direct comment floats on by.)

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2092 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    This came back to me last night during Outrageous Fortune, while watching Shane Cortese slide from under a sheet to under a towel with a smoothness that made me actually applaud.

    That whole episode last night was bloody awesome. Powerful television easily up there with the best I've ever seen and I hope those involved feel proud of their work. Could see why they needed a notice at the end advising where to call for counselling. I blubbed (but not because of the towel).

    I've only seen once in some Brit tv drama over a decade ago a woman sitting in bed with her partner and not pulling the sheets around her ears. Maybe there are just not enough representations of changing room nakedness to reassure young women that they won't die of shame uncovered? I'm really surprised this stuff seems to be so common.

    I recommend doses of Peter Greenaway for equal opportunity commando comfort. And great film-making.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16277 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    I've only seen once in some Brit tv drama over a decade ago a woman sitting in bed with her partner and not pulling the sheets around her ears.

    Given all the nipples currently on display on the six o'clock news, this just seems even more ridiculous. Although not more than the ad for "extended and uncensored footage" on the 3 news website, which poor Hilary Barry was just forced to put in an extra plug for. One can't help thinking that if nudity was less problematic, we wouldn't be forced to put up with this.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2092 posts Report Reply

  • Isabel Hitchings,

    It's all about context. My mother was front-row centre as my second baby was crowning and yet a couple of days later it didn't feel right having her pop into the bathroom while I was safely behind the shower door.

    I'm slowly getting over my body-paranoia. For me it was hair that was the issue. Having sprouted rather a lot of it quite early on and having the sort of skin that goes vividly rashy at the first hint of most defoliatory devices and potions my intermediate and high-school swimming experiences were a little fraught. I've found that being short-sighted works in my favour as i can take out my contact lenses and indulge in the belief that I look just as fuzzy to everyone else as they do to me.

    Christchurch • Since Jul 2007 • 703 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Isabel - heh! Another myope greets you!

    I am utterly at ease in my body(well, I mean, I am my body arnt I?) - I havent worn bra since I was 20 (and I am a 42 inch C) or nightwear, ditto, and when I swim, I swim in what I was born in -

    but I really dont like people *looking* at me-

    I think this is because
    a) I have a squint (squints are evil! Kill squinters!)
    b)if I'm swimming, I dont have lens in, and I cant see who is looking - and that it is not as comforting as it may sound to the sighted among us-
    c)I am an extremely private person - my mother says she hasnt seen all of me since I was 8-
    d)OK, I'm a weirdo, but a nice harmless one who supports Jackie to the max- we iz ALL beautiful on the skin!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • dyan campbell,

    I believe the phrase came from the custom of commandos in the tropics to not wear underpants because they actually increased hygiene problems. Curiously, Arnie did not go commando in Commando. He feels much more comfortable in undies.

    No, no Ben... the phrase "going commando" come from the tv ad for GI Joe doll that ran in the 1960s... "Joe can go in by air, in a tank, by parachute or... go commando " (cue to GI Joe rappelling into battle). It refers to the guy's testicles swinging free and that's why it's so funny to North Americans when women mistakenly use the phrase "going commando".

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 595 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    GI Joe rappelling into battle . . .

    Fancy that.
    Reminds me of a story from someone working as a kids' party clown in Australia, who was "dakked" (had his clown pants yanked down} by a sneaky anklebiter as he attempted to juggle. All the more embarrassing as he happened to be "freebagging" at the time.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3326 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Do you fellas know just *how* many new terms I've learned on PAS?

    'dakked' -yes.
    'freebagging' -no.

    Keep 'em coming good people-

    (lolls back, sucking a quiet pinot gris (wait! something is wrong there?)
    and trimming back hiser silj (- gah!))

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Mrs Skin,

    I'm with Islander. I really like my body, no shame at all there, but I'm an intensely private person. I probably wouldn't actually get changed in the toilet, but it would cross my mind.

    Far as I'm concerned there's only limited classes of people I share my body with, and if you're not in one of those categories then I don't want you to see it. And I'm pretty happy with that.

    the warmest room in the h… • Since Feb 2009 • 168 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Dyan, I must confess I didn't look it up, having read about it years ago in some Soldier of Fortune magazines. The author was especially bitter on not going commando to the point he convinced me and I went that way for nearly 15 years. The idea of crotch rot really doesn't appeal. I've since realized that underwear have come a long way since then.

    But teh wiki agrees with me. It's called that because commandos did it. I find it especially hard to believe that GI Joe even could go commando - his undies are built in. He's never going to be caught freebagging when juggle-dakked. He'll down them and f*&$ing clown them. Go Joe!

    I have learned tonight that going commando is also sometimes used to mean "sans dinger". Maybe that explains the doc's reticence.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Hang on a minute, that's one dodgy clown. They surely expect to be dakked nearly every time they perform. They shouldn't be freeballing (freebagging is the female form) in front of children. Aren't they meant to wear long johns or some other comical kind of underwear?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    Hang on a minute, that's one dodgy clown. They surely expect to be dakked nearly every time they perform.

    Life hands out lessons, more often than not through the agency of children, and one modifies one's m.o. accordingly. It was in this context that the tale was relayed to me.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3326 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,


    The Ramones - Commando.

    According to the lyrics, four rules:

    First rule is: The laws of Germany
    Second rule is: Be nice to your mommy
    Third rule is: Don't talk to commies
    Fourth rule is: Eat kosher salamis

    No mention of underwear.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3326 posts Report Reply

  • Sarah Horth,

    Thanks for the great post Emma. It really took me back, the smells, the endless rehearsals, the excitement. Dad was an opera singer, and mum acted sometimes so I did the whole backstage thing as well.

    I remember being thoroughly embarrassed at Mum playing a drunk woman in a cabaret show at the Ace of Clubs (on top of Cook St Markets!) in Auckland and singing a throaty 'Hey big Spender' - cringe cringe cringe went my 8 year old self!

    Seattle • Since Aug 2009 • 44 posts Report Reply

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