A naked violinist was jailed in Portland on Saturday after witnesses reported the man setting up in front of a downtown Portland federal courthouse with his violin, bow, and nothing else. The exposed violinist was arrested by police for indecent exposure, yet he refused to budge his bare butt off of the courthouse steps. Police were forced to pick the man up and carry him over to a squad car, reports The Associated Press on May 24.
According to police records, the man gave his name as 25-year-old Matthew T. Mglej. When police arrived, they warned the man and told him to either dress himself or go home, but Mglej just kept on playing. The chin music conversation didn’t last too long; police hauled the naked fiddler off.
According to Time.com, which carried a photo of our stripped down string player (face only that is), Portland city code states that it is “unlawful for any person to expose his or her genitalia while in a public place or place visible from a public place, if the public place is open or available to persons of the opposite sex.” The Portland Police Bureau said they advised Mglej several times to leave after multiple calls came in complaining about his nude playing. No word on if Mglej was an accomplished player or just an overly exposed entertainer giving off some bad vibes, as it were.
Ironically, Portland does make an exception to their city code about being naked in public. The annual “World’s Naked Bike Ride,” set to take place this year on June 7, allows nude bike riders to strut their stuff in front of tens of thousands of spectators. According to the ride’s funding site, the event “highlights the vulnerability of cyclists everywhere and decries society’s dependence on pollution-based transport.” The motto is fitting: “Be as bare as you dare.” The event draws about 8,000 nude riders each year, who are told to stay on the designated route and not to walk around the city naked.
And certainly, don’t bring your strings, unless it’s a thong.