From birth to death, we members of the human race seek out reasons to celebrate. And why not? For it is commemorating important occasions that  binds us. That offers us satisfaction. That makes us and others feel good about ourselves, and, of course, in recent times has resulted in huge profits for the retail trade.

It is true that birds celebrate too, for is it not through their jubilant dawn chorus and joy that we delight in each new day? However, personal adornment and ceremonial costume would appear to be the preoccupation of mankind. Could it be that that the plainness of the naked human form is just another of God’s little mistakes? After all, peacocks, leopards, zebras and crocodiles need no help to look good, and we are only to happy to borrow their skins to conceal our own defects.

Maybe this a comparatively modern phenomenon? Well, without the prohibitive cost of regressive therapy to take me back to my caveman ancestors, I will never know, so with that in mind, I will concentrate on more recent times.

Surely one of the most bizarre adornments must be that of the 16th century ‘codpiece’ to accentuate the size of a gentleman’s member, and I can only assume that it is our fetish for gender equality that has stood in the way of its re-emergence today.  The need to match it with some vaginal or clitoral decoration having, thankfully, not as yet hit the catwalk.

Today, anything goes, and there can be no better place to witness this than in central Brighton. Friday and Saturday evenings will see crowds of hen party goers parading the streets donned in skimpy, unattractive, synthetic costumes. The larger the thighs, the tighter and shorter the belts, pretending to be skirts. The plainer the girls, the louder and more eccentric the clothes.

But make no mistake, this is not all.  Transvestites troll the seashore, often putting us girls to shame with their elaborate outfits, beautifully coiffed hair and immaculate make up.

Perhaps the climax, though, is the Naked Bike Ride which takes place once a year. Here, there is the opportunity to peer at the wide variety of penises and bosoms on display, some decorated, others dangling as is. It is hilarious, harmless and  particularly helpful if doing some kind of research.

I rest my case.

Kate Dyson


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