And What About the Naked Snowman...
By Bill Taverner, CFLE Director
Question: What is the difference between
snowmen and snowwomen?
Answer: Snow balls.
Newsflash! That’s not the only difference. The other way to tell them apart is that police will leave a naked snowman alone. But a naked snowwoman? Call 911!
I’ve seen plenty of snowmen in my life, all of them naked. None of them have ever been fully dressed, at least where it counts. Your typical snowman sports buttons, a scarf, and maybe a top hat, but who's ever seen a snowman with a pair of pants? And that’s probably the most critical piece of clothing a snowman would need in sub-freezing temperatures. Right, guys?
I admit to not having seen many "snowwomen" in my life, but a family of gifted artists, capable of replicating art normally reserved for the Louvre, treated their neighbors to a delightful surprise - their rendition of Venus de Milo. Eliza Gonzalez, of Rahway, NJ, and her 2 children, ages 21 and 12, created a snow sculpture that would rival the best work of Phil Connors (Bill Murray) in Groundhog Day.
Don't get me wrong - the statue was not without flaw. It wouldn't be much use in a class on sexual anatomy, as it lacked detail in the nipples and vulva. But, then again, I probably shouldn’t be critiquing snow art. I've never been able to construct a snow figure that didn’t end up looking like "snow lump".
But, Ms. Gonzalez had at least one set of neighbors who were more severe critics than me - they called in the police. Oh, how I wish I could have been on the Gonzalez doorstep to hear that exchange.
Imagine if you will...
Officer: “Uh, excuse me, ma’am. We received a complaint about your snow lady out front. The one without the head…”
Ms. Gonzalez: “Yes, officer, it’s a rendition of the work of Alexandros of Antioch from about the first century B.C. Is there a problem?”
Officer: “Well, uh, she doesn’t have any clothes on.”
Ms. Gonzalez: “Yes, well, she doesn’t have any arms either. Is that a problem, too?”
Officer: “No ma’am. The severed arms and decapitation are fine. It’s just the nakedness.”
Ms. Gonzalez: “I don’t understand. What is it you want me to do?”
Officer: “If you could, uh, dress her, that would be great, ma’am.”
Well, we know at least that last part actually happened. A green bikini top and a blue sarong now adorn the snow figure (see the picture above). Suddenly the armless, headless Venus de Rahway is headed for the beach in 30 degree weather.
“I thought she looked more objectified and sexualized after [we] put the bikini on,” said Ms. Gonzalez.
Why is it that instincts tell us (in this case - the police) to cater to the most erotophobic among us? Why couldn’t the officer visit the neighbor’s home instead and say, “Uh, look…I think you may have the problem here?" For goodness sake, the snow figure replicated a piece of classical art - it was not intended to outdo Larry Flynt!
It seems only fitting to conclude this essay with one of my favorite comics that I’ve sent to friends with my “Season’s Greetings” messages. The comic shows two "snow parents" lovingly building their "snowchild."
“Would you look at that? They’re making a baby right in the front yard!” cry the snow neighbors. “It’s disgraceful!”
Oh, and I am definitely calling the TV networks the next time I see a pantless Frosty prancing around my TV.