You can't do that!

Earlier today I was picking dry clothes from the drying rack, because even nudists wear clothes at times, which requires washing and drying them. As usual I did that in the nude, because the rack is in a room in my own house, there are gauze curtains for the window, I’m fine. Until this morning, sort of.
I tend to do all household things in the nude…

I noticed someone standing on the gallery outside the window (I live on the 4th floor), doing his best to look inside. I recognised one of my neighbours, face pressed against the glass, hands around his eyes so he could see what was going on. The window is always tilted open, so I clearly heard him call out: “You’re not wearing clothes!” I replied that I knew that. He didn’t leave; instead he called out: “You can’t do that!” Only then he left. I thought.

A moment later, the doorbell rang. I knew it was the neighbour, as the window he had been peeping through is very close to the front door, so I walked to the door and opened it. Yes, naked. That seemed to give him a shock, even though he’d already seen I wore nothing. He stared at me (all over, which made me feel like he was severely invading my privacy) until I asked him what he wanted. (“My face is up here” were my exact words.) He told me that I can’t walk around naked.
Oh, in my house I can. I know this for a fact. As long as no one can immediately see me from the outside, I’m all in the clear.
He: “But I saw you.”
Yes. You were doing your curious utmost to see what was happening, almost pressing your head through the double glazing, so indeed you saw me. This is not accidentally seeing something, this is curiosity and acting like a peeping tom, invading the privacy of my home. (By that time another neighbour passed by. She glanced at me, smiled with a nod and a wink and walked on.)
“Still I think you are not allowed to do that.” His that was accompanied by a finger pointing at my privates.
Well, I’m not sorry but I think you are not allowed to do that unless I give you permission.

The discussion, with me standing naked in the open door, went on for a while until I offered to call the police and ask if they could come and explain things to him. He dared me, and only as I took the phone he walked off.

I am not going to put on clothes when I’m right. Period.

124 thoughts on “You can't do that!”

  1. All I ever got was a very loud ugh from the neighbor behind my property. I think I just shocked him.:) I am very careful not to offend anyone since my whole back yard is not exactly private. Nothing else was every said and the they are still friendly to me although we are not actually friends. I did catch the neighbor to my left peeping over the privacy fence one time but nothing was ever said about it. Then again she fried her brains on drugs a long time ago so she has a hard time telling the difference between reality and fantasy so who knows what went on inside her head.

    • Since my encounter with him in the hall, this afternoon, I tend to think of it the opposite way. He was at first unlucky to see me, but this had the end effect that he now is aware of what he's doing. He shouldn't snoop along windows. That curiosity bit him in the butt a few days ago, and now he seems to understand that he's doing something wrong. (For as long as that sticks in his head.)

  2. I'm in total shock with your story, Paul. The audacity of this man! I can only imagine that he heard from someone that you live nude in your home and it bothered him so much that other people are not living with the same ideas he has. Something like the religious fundamentalist who believe everyone should follow their brand of ideology and want the government to enforce their beliefs. It's frightening, not only in countries where Islam is dominant, but even in places such as the US, especially the South. I think it's getting worse. Free thinkers need to become more vocal and demand to be left alone. Maybe even run for political office.

    • Carl Mario, I doubt anyone knew about my nudity (although many probably do by now). This man is incurably curious and always takes his time walking past windows (with or without curtains), to see if he sees something interesting. This time he got his money's worth I dare say.
      You are right in that he has a problem in accepting other people's ways, that's why he started calling out that I "couldn't do that".
      I think he's a sad pathetic soul.

  3. It is. It's not legal here to stand in front of a curtainless window in the nude, where everyone passing by can see you, but I have curtains everywhere. He really had to put in an effort to see inside.

    • Is that actually a written statute in NL? If I were you, I'd have a solicitor look into that. It's possible that the common understanding that there is "a law that forbids home nudity visible to passers-by" could be just something people believe to be true without it actually being true.

      I mentioned your situation to a friend of mine who is of the opinion that the fundamental rights guaranteed you under EU law would call any "You have to have curtains" law into question.

      I'm no legal expert (and my source is still studying law!), so I really recommend getting some legal advice from an attorney there in NL. In any case, you might want to look into a "cease and desist suit" against the neighbour, if he decides to be a pain again.

  4. Given that you're on the forth floor I'd be ringing the police and laying a complaint. Unfortunately in Australia it is against the law to be viewable from a public place. IE: The street. I assume a neighbours garden wouldn't be a problem as it not a public place.

    • Next time I *will* call the police, for violation of privacy and harassment.
      You should make sure that a neighbour's garden is not considered a public place; over here it is – unless they have to climb a ladder and have binoculars and mirrors to see you.

  5. Its sad that someone with nothing better to do, did what your neighbour did Paul. Good for you for standing up to him, doing that naked makes that even better, and for pointing out that you are perfectly free to be naked at home. Especially without doing anything to attract the attention of people outside of it.

    He acted like many bullies do.

    It would be interesting to witness the next time you meet him!

    • I leave everyone their values and honours, all I ask is that they do that for me as well. Indeed, I am fully in my right – I am certain that the police would have agreed. I really would have called them.
      This man is 'famous' for being curious. This time it got him into a kind of trouble he's probably going to have nightmares about. Well, tough luck. I'll sleep fine tonight. And naked.
      I'll let you know what happened when I meet him again.

  6. This reminds me of the story of the person who called the cops to complain of a neighbor exposing himself within range of the back window. The cop came and looked out and said he could see no one, naked or otherwise. The person looked shocked, then climbed up on a high stool, craned neck and twisted head, and said, "No, there he is, right now, and not wearing a thing, just like I told you."

    Some people, sometimes … 8^|

  7. It's almost shocking in this day and age, that even a prude is not aware of peeping tom laws which I believe are nearly universal. People seem to best understand only their own take on the law. Even us nude types.

    Ironically as I write this, I am listening to a radio discussion on NPR about the singing style "crooning" Some folks of the day saw this phenomena as the end of civilization and morality as they knew it and suspected that crooning too must be against the law. Haven't we all been there a few times already?

    I'm sorry to read that you were forced in you own home to stand your ground in the face of such lunacy Paul. Good show!

    • It was so astonishing annoying. _I_ am aware of the laws in this country, I make sure that I'm not to blame and then he is going off on me like that. Urgh.
      I am already looking forward to meet him again. Just to see how he reacts to seeing me (which will probably be clothed again, but hey).

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