Ever since  that piece about plastic surgery and the aestheticians who keep having the gall to send me email about how they can get me a “Facelift Miracle”(as if I needed such a thing), I’ve been noticing a number of items in the news about occasions where the focus is on skin and the display thereof.

The first one to catch my eye was an event down in the southern part of the state, Blue Ash,  Hamilton County (near Cincinnati).  It seems that this dude in a pickup truck all of a sudden started driving down the right-hand berm of the road; he sideswiped four vehicles then rear-ended a fifth, a Mercedes, struck the median and overturned onto a Jeep.  Whooeee!

The skin connection?

Once his truck mercifully came to a stop, the man got out and began running down Interstate 71, stark naked, nearly a mile , while being pursued by a law enforcement officer.  He claimed that his brakes failed but I’d say the failure was likely somewhere else altogether.  One of the law officers on the scene said, “I don’t know what he was on but it was something.”  He’s been charged with vehicular assault, aggravated vehicular assault, resisting arrest and OVI (operating a vehicle while under the influence).  A Hamilton County judge has set bail for the various offenses at over $600,000.  Indecent exposure wasn’t even listed.  The videos (everybody does videos now) of the escapade  have his nether regions pixilated out—the news is for family audiences, after all.  Interstate 71-southbound was closed for more than an hour.  Apparently, as soon as his truck came to a halt, he took off running and did not stop, even when people in stopped cars offered him clothes.  There were no clothes in the truck.  So…one is forced to assume that he hadn’t any clothes on when he started this adventure. Folks heading down that way to visit King’s Island got more excitement than even The Racer, The Beast and the Banshee.

Then the Record-Courier carried an Associated Press piece—with pictures—about the Philly Naked Bike Ride in–Duh—Philadelphia last week.  The event claimed to be about promoting fuel conservation and positive body image.  O.K., then, if that’s what they want to call it, who are we to argue?

Apparently, the décor ran to shoes, masks (I’d sure be wearing one of those, should I be so rash—more on that later—as to be participating,)  glitter, body paint, nothing at all or some faint-of-heart types who donned only underwear for the trip.  One chick was body-painted in front and on her back was emblazoned the message, “Live free, ride nude.”  Another chap had a sign that read, “The earth is the Lord’s.”  This doesn’t strike me as a real big Biblical event, somehow, but…oh well.  Somebody else was supporting breast cancer research or other causes and somebody else—harking back to the supposed purpose of the event, fuel conservation—sported “Burn fat, not oil.”

Anyway, it was a 12-mile jaunt through the City of Brotherly Love and is somehow connected to the World Naked Bike Ride movement.  They’ve been doing this for seven years now. ( Why haven’t we heard about this before?)

So, my second thought on this—after the first chuckle—was focused on the discomfort factor.  Those seats are no treat to ride on when fully clothed.  I’ve tried a couple different models and the thought of doing twelve miles with nothing between my tender anatomy and the minimally-padded plastic was not something that I’d like to think about again.  You can adjust the living daylights out of those things and still not be all snuggly-cozy while you’re pedaling along.  The “rash thing” mentioned earlier?  Contemplate where that could be an issue.  Or don’t if it makes you queasy.

And finally, more about seating, with clothing, presumably, The Ford Motor Company is moving into the area of super-luxury automobiles, with its eye (eyes?) on selling in China.  The upcoming Lincoln top-of-the-line models will have seats that are heated, cooled, adjustable for height and customizable for individual tushes—right, left, up, down, whatever, and with rear seats (Lots of Chinese millionaires/billionaires like to be chauffeured, so they, themselves, like to have the deluxe stuff in the back) accompanied by–not cup holders, you peasants—places for champagne flutes, massage cushions and desk space.  How do you like them apples?

I can hardly wait until that stuff hits the standard production line.  You could go in to get your seat fitted before taking delivery of your wheels.  Some of us might have to go with the heavy-duty models and the term, “wide-body” wouldn’t necessarily be referring to the wheelbase.

Henry Ford may be spinning somewhere.