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I Respect Anyone With The Bravery To Swim Naked In The Inner Harbor

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Baltimore Sun - In April, an unidentified man was seen jogging naked through the city streets. On Wednesday, a man swam naked in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.

Baltimore Sun photographer Kim Hairston happened to be on assignment near the Maryland Science Center at about 9:40 a.m. and caught the man on camera.

It wasn’t until he swam to the dock and emerged that she discovered he was nude.

“It was just odd,” she said.

The man got out of the water and started getting dressed. Hairston said she saw police officers approach the man and talk with him for several minutes.

“You’re just stunned when you see something like that because it’s the Inner Harbor,” Hairston said.

The water in the Inner Harbor is not safe for swimming due to high levels of fecal bacteria. Despite environmentalists’ goal of creating a “swimmable” harbor by 2020, the water routinely receives failing grades for quality.

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On first glance, swimming naked in the Inner Harbor could be described as “gross” or “ridiculously gross”. But who am I to judge? One man’s gross is another man’s refreshing dip. And that’s exactly what that guy did. Just because I, or anyone I know, wouldn’t strip down and take a swim in the Harbor, which is “not safe for swimming due to high levels of fecal bacteria” doesn’t make it wrong, per se. In fact, it makes this man brave. Tempting the E. Coli gods to smite him. Tempting the stray, rusty needles to stab him. Daring the toxic waste and sewage to infect him. He stares danger and Hepatitis C right in the face and doesn’t bat an eye, and it’s not just because of the meth.

And besides, if they didn’t want people swimming around in the Harbor, they wouldn’t have put the Harbor there, right? Where’s the rule that the big body of water can’t be your personal bath tub? I’m glad the citizens of Baltimore are realizing the scenic Harbor can double as a place to cool off on a hot summer day. Cool off now, die early of dysentery later. That’s my motto.