Thursday, June 14, 2012

Is it Really a Privacy Fence?

SOME YEARS ago, a member of our Bare Platypus team and his wife had an “animated” discussion about plans for a home improvement project.  Specifically, they were researching the expense, permitting process, and possible vendors to install a six foot opaque fence in the back yard.


“You want to spend your entire annual bonus on a privacy fence?” she asked.
“No.  I want to spend the money on a non-offense fence,” he replied.
“You want the fence so you can sunbathe and walk around naked…  You want a privacy fence,” she shot back.
He corrected her: “I DO want to walk around and sunbathe naked… A LOT, but that’s why I have to build a non-offense fence, not a privacy fence. There's a difference!”


You see, from the perspective of our Platypus, he felt forced to build the fence to avoid offending the neighbors---who would no doubt call the cops on him for nakedness.  But it was NOT out of any search for "privacy" and the distinction was important to him.

As he recounted to us, PRIVACY implies that you want to be concealed or protected from others knowing what you are doing. PRIVACY connotes that you are the person seeking out something.  As a legitimate nudist, our Platypus merely wants to avoid offending someone else. He’s not an exhibitionist, but he couldn’t care less whether someone else saw him in his birthday suit.  The fence is a courtesy to those who do not wish to see his nudity.

The fur on our Platypus bristles at any implication that he would spend money on a fence if others didn’t have hang ups about nudity. He wouldn’t. 

How about it readers? Is he being hyper-technical or is the distinction important? Is it important we make clear that our fences are NOT to protect those within them so much as a concession to those on the outside?