On November 2, the second Naked Bike Ride in Kansas City drew more than three dozen cyclists willing to bare their bods — and risk arrest — in the name of a little two-wheeled liberation. Claus Wawrzinek, a Kansas City resident, says shedding his clothes and braving a cold bike seat was a chance to show off the cycling community and catch the eye of metro motorists.
At least 10 men were completely commando, Wawrzinek says. Others wore a sock, Red Hot Chili Peppers-style. None of the women, he adds, were showing all their skin, but certainly some were in a state of undress sufficient to attract attention.
As Wawrzinek recalls, the risqué parade had traveled about two miles from its Westport starting point when cyclists encountered police in the Crossroads. Several sources tell the Department of Burnt Ends that the cops wanted the nude cyclists out of the heavily trafficked art district as quickly as possible. Wawrzinek was near the back of the pack when he saw "a bike in the middle of the street and some policemen dragging someone to the side of the road."
The scantily clad biker was Joey Grimm. The 19-year-old Kansas City Art Institute student was wearing nothing but a tube sock. That is, until he was arrested by Kansas City police officers.
His alleged crime, according to a ticket issued by KCPD: "Did knowingly expose his genitals under circumstances in which he knows that his conduct is likely to cause affront or harm by riding his bicycle on the city street and through large crowds with a tube sock over his penis and no other clothing."
Capt. Rich Lockhart, spokesman for the Kansas City Police Department, says he's not sure why Grimm was singled out in a sea of near nudists. It was probably just a matter of not responding promptly to commands, he says.
Nancy Woodfill, a friend of Grimm's family who rushed to the scene to bring the tube-sock cyclist some clothes, found the exposed arrestee hidden between two parked cars in a lot at 20th Street and Main. Grimm told her that he was ahead of the pack and, because of traffic, couldn't pull off the road as fast as the police demanded. "So basically, he was knocked off his bike," Woodfill says.
Grimm, who didn't return calls from Burnt Ends, has made headlines for showing off his physical attributes in the past. As a sophomore at De Soto High School, he won an award from Kansas U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore in 2004 for his painting "Sexy Self Portrait." The skillful piece with a tongue-in-cheek title was even exhibited in the U.S. Capitol.
This time, though, Grimm's daring display landed him in the city clink for several hours. And, come January, the artist will have to win over a municipal judge, or his sexy cycling could cost him $600 in city fines.