After the Emperor!

Illustration of the fable The Emperor's New Clothes
As I begin typing these words unto an empty page, I am fully aware of the onslaught of impassioned criticism my writing is bound to unveil. Admittedly, I am finding it somewhat difficult to type, for my hands tremor slightly at the mere thought of the incessant scorn that may forever befall my name. In fact, I must admit the word ‘slight’ in no way describes the violent shaking in which my hands are currently engaged, and it has taken no less than two full hours simply to formulate the past three sentences in a legible manner.

Yet I must persist. I must continue to type. For the fear that consumes me is dwarfed by the passion that pulses through every fiber of my being. Yes, it is passion that drives me on—that forces me to continue. It is passion for my cause, and sheer conviction in my beliefs, that shatters the icy embrace of terror, and forces me onward.

For no matter the response I receive, these words must be written. No matter what awaits me upon the publication of this document, be it humiliation, malevolence, or even death, I must make known my convictions. I must share with the world the ideas that have befallen my tortured mind. Listen closely now, as I impart my great epiphany upon you all. For the health, happiness, and longevity of our society, I have found it absolutely vital, that we, the people of the world, in grand and triumphant unison, cast off our rags of oppression, discard our garbs of injustice, absolve ourselves of our tyrannical habiliments! Yes, you heard me correctly. It is absolutely vital we cease to wear clothes.

Are you a brand, my dear friends? Are you a manufactured, mass-produced, cluster of mundane colors and patterns, oafishly compressed into a perverse form? No, my friends, you are a human being: a magnificent creature, the great masterwork of many millions of years of evolution. You are a glorious individual, a force of grace, distinction, and splendor! So why, oh why, would you confine yourself to be nothing more than the manifestation of shallow materialism? Of corporate greed and indifference? It is in a detestable assault on all that is good and natural and pure that the greedy business man has convinced us all that our naked bodies are shameful and obscene; that only when buried beneath manufactured clothing can we be beautiful and complete. But this is a lie as great as any— a lie as great as the flatness of the earth, or cheese-based composition of the moon. This is the great American lie, and we must fight it to the end. Let us ride into the battle of self-preservation, hoisting the transcendent flag of our own naked bodies! Let us show the greedy businessman we do not need his lies, for we have achieved self-actualization without his dubious aid.

For my brothers and sisters stationed in the colder regions of the United States, I realize that participation in this clothing revolution may pose a practical dilemma, but let me say this: the mind, when filled with strong enough resolve, can overpower the body in remarkable ways. Yes, in the midst of a frigid Montana winter, your liberated figure may ostensibly experience something akin to extreme coldness. But, if you simply allow the momentous revelation that you are no longer a puppet in a play of fools to permeate your consciousness, I think you will find yourself remarkably warm.

If the snug embrace of liberty proves insufficient against nature’s whims there exist a number of techniques that should allow you to preserve both your warmth and your dignity. You could coat your entire body in a thick layer of Vaseline, for example, entrapping heat without obscuring your glorious suit of autonomy. Alternatively, several layers of saran wrap should do the trick. Whatever you do, just don’t let the fire that is your spirit be extinguished by the suffocating conformity of your clothes!

I can sense revolution, my dear friends, eagerly lurking just around the bend. The people are growing intolerant of the corporate masquerade. No longer will we accept that idea that happiness and perfection can be purchased and then worn. Let us follow the example of the Emperor, that admirable lodestar, who dawned his “new clothes” so far before his time. After the Emperor, I say! Join me comrades, and let us cast away our rags of oppression, discard our garbs of injustice! Let us absolve ourselves of our tyrannical habiliments! Let us shine brightly, as glorious individuals, and cease to sulk through the dark anonymity of conformity, embodied by our clothes.

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