Friday, 20 July 2012

Naked rambler - cheeky hero or just a bit of a dick

Steven Gough naked rambler
Land's End to prison, setting off
Steven Gough is at large again.

More than a decade ago the former marine had an epiphany and took his kit off. He decided that the human body is a beautiful thing and the right to wear one's skin as nature intended should be an automatic one.

His way of doing this was to hike from Land's End to John O'Groats wearing nothing other than a hat, a rucksack and a stout pair of boots.

it was all quite a hoot when he set off jiggling up the road and headline writers had a ball. Or balls actually.

By the time the naked rambler set off for a second lap he had acquired quite a following and a girlfriend. So far so good, until he hit the nudes headlines in Scotland. He was arrested for breach of the peace.

For the next few years he spent months and naked months in prison mostly in solitary confinement and the all-together. He undressed in court, on aeroplanes and anywhere else he could, incurring the wrath of lots of people it's better not to incur the wrath of.

His bare bottomed crusade turned into a monumental waste of his life, of money, of police and court time, and of his relationship with his teenage kids. How did it all go so wrong?

On the one hand he has a good point - the human body is a fine thing and it does seem insane that all this fuss has come from one man's refusal to keep his boxers on. Surely there are far worse things than showing the world your meat and two veg? Especially when nudity of one form or another is not easy to avoid on telly, in the papers and on the web.

Of course, integrity, passion and commitment are fine fine things that used correctly can change the world for the better. But all he has really achieved is pity, pithy headings and some strategicly placed pixels.

He is free again and this time the police and courts have decided to let him go on his way. Where to? Sunny side up into the arms of the authorities again, back to build relationships with family and friends, or somewhere else?

It's possible it might not all be a total waste if he uses his notoriety to reiterate the very point he set put trying to make.

He could give intelligent and considered interviews in all sorts of places - pointing out the lunacy of a world that jails a man for walking around in the buff yet permits pornography to be available to everyone with only a few clicks of a computer button.

Only I think Steve would get better results if he kept his pants on. It might just be me, but it's ever so hard to concentrate when there is a willy waving about nearby.


  1. This is hilarious. Your posts haven't come through again, so am catching up. Glad you enjoyed your hols and no doubt that feels miles away by now. Love the lego table and good luck to this man!

    1. Since I wrote this, he's been arrested again. What a pointless existence! And thanks we had a lovely holiday.


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