A lot of times in life, you don't expect one of your friends to send you naked pictures of his wife and then one day it happens and you are forced to answer some tough questions for yourself. At least that's how it happened with me anyway.
A couple days of ago, I was spending a little time "surfing the net" when I checked my e-mail inbox to discover a nice, though somewhat profanity-laced note from a friend I hadn't heard from in a while. I can't remember exactly what he wrote, but I was happy to hear from him, so happy in fact that I even wrote back to ask him what he had been up to/how things were going on his end, etc.
A few minutes later I received his response to the e-mail I had sent him in response to the e-mail that he had sent to me. In this e-mail, he mentioned "getting involved in porn" or something along those lines. Since making mention of porn is a quick go-to joke for a lot guys (though not me. I'm above it) when corresponding with a lot of other guys, I assumed he was making a hilarious joke. To keep the hilarious joke going, I responded in a subsequent e-mail with something along the lines of "good luck with the porn" or something equally laugh-out-loud funny.
Shortly thereafter, I received another e-mail from him in which he said he was only half-kidding about that whole "getting involved in porn" thing from his previous e-mail. Apparently my friend had taken up photography in earnest with an emphasis on taking photos of wife, specifically what some might call "tasteful nudes," which in turn are often referred to by others as "erotica" (which in turn is often referred to by still others as "porn").
Tasteful nudes, erotica, and/or porn aside, I was still pretty sure my friend was joking about taking naked pictures of his wife, so much in fact that I kept the zingers coming by writing back to him about how I'd "really like to see naked photos of his wife some time" and I "hope he builds a website with naked pictures of his wife on it." I chuckled to myself as I hit the send button. Man was I on today!
It is at about this time when things stopped being funny/started to get really, really awesome.
In response to my e-mail about how I'd like to see naked photos of his wife, my friend sent me a link to a website on which he and his wife had been archiving all the naked pictures he had been taking of her in his spare time away from being a high-ranking government official.* It was at this point that I found myself at a crossroads of sorts. Being a born and raised Catholic, I was pretty darn sure that one of the Ten Commandments says something about not "coveting thy neighbor's wife" or something. I turned these words over and over in my head a bunch of times, poking at the semantics/checking for loopholes, and just generally trying to figure out if this applied in any way to me looking at naked pictures pictures of my friend's wife on the Internet.
After a few seconds of this, I decided that I was totally in the clear. Still, I was troubled. On the one hand- given my status as one of this nation's foremost political analysts- I'm always up for taking a look at naked pictures of pretty much anyone. On the other hand, my friend and his wife are people I've had chicken wings with and stuff. Was I really ready to make that leap from enjoying a light snack with close friends to totally checking out my friend's wife's goods? The answer, I decided after a bit of soul searching, was definitely, totally, as soon as possible, YES, YES, and YES!
Having made the decision to move forward in my quest to see naked pictures of my friend's wife, I clicked on the link my friend sent me to discover a gallery of photos of my friend's wife sitting around and doing stuff in the nude. My initial reaction was "Yes, that is definitely her and she is definitely naked. Holy sh*t. Holy f*cking sh*t." Also, I realized that- having already passed the link on to me and all- my friend was probably expecting me to write back soon and let him know what I thought about his photography skills/naked pictures of his wife, so I had no choice but to forge ahead and click on all 26 thumbnails in the gallery to get a sense of things.
It's kind of weird when you see someone you know totally naked in photos or- even better- on film. Not long ago, I was watching a movie featuring an actress friend of mine and at one point she totally took all her clothes off. My initial reaction was to look away (I am a gentleman), which was shortly thereafter followed by the decision to repeatedly hit rewind. I had similar feelings while checking out naked pictures of my friend's wife. Generally speaking, seeing your friend's wife naked is usually followed by getting punched in the face by your friend or getting some sort of indecent proposal from both your friend and his wife (in the latter case you usually have to move or- at the very least- cry yourself to sleep the next few nights). And as these things go, people usually look either much better or much worse naked than you might have previously imagined over and over again while taking a shower or cleaning up around the house. I am happy to report for both of us (and also my friend who took the pictures of his wife), however, that she looked really nice naked. I don't mean that in a creepy way- remember these are "tasteful nudes" I'm talking about here. Get your head out of the gutter. And remind me not to invite you to the MoMA next go-round.
Anyway, the naked pictures of my friend's wife mostly involved her hanging out in an old motel room in various states of undress and doing things like chewing gum, watching TV, and whatever else people do when they're naked and someone else in the room has a camera. In a couple of the shots, she even had her vagina hanging out. Since I am really mature and stuff, I could handle this in all its complete and total awesomeness. Given the choice, however, I must admit that my comfort zone lies somewhere closer to photos in which my friend's wife's vagina is not in the frame. Call me old-fashioned or whatever, but that's just where things are at with me at the moment. And just to let you know that I am a man of universal standards- I have yet to expose my external genitalia in or on any known media to date (no matter what anyone else's Photoshop skills might suggest).
After roughly 47 minutes of looking at naked pictures of my friend's wife on the Internet, I decided it was time to drop my friend a line and let him know what I thought of his new hobby. "Great shots," I wrote. "You really seem to have mastered that whole lighting thing and stuff. Were those shot on film or digitally? Nice vagina." Then I deleted that last part because I am classy. When in doubt, always take the high road, I say.
In closing, I would like to point out that if President Bush spent even half his time taking naked pictures of his wife instead of doing all that other crap he's been up to since he's been in office, this country (and a bunch of other ones too) would be a LOT better off.
*not his real job.