The No Pants Subway Ride is an annual event that dates back to 2002. For nearly 20 years, it’s been an annual tradition every January (the exact date would change from year to year, but they’d announce it in December).
The No Pants Subway Ride was started by Improv Everywhere, an NYC-based improvisational troupe. As they describe the event:
The idea behind No Pants is simple: Random passengers board a subway car at separate stops in the middle of winter without pants. The participants behave as if they do not know each other, and they all wear winter coats, hats, scarves, and gloves. The only unusual thing is their lack of pants.
This video tells the story of the very first No Pants Subway Ride:
Since its humble beginnings in 2002, the event has expanded to cities all across the United States (Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington D.C., among others)and has included global rides in Berlin, Lisbon, London, Melbourne, Montreal, Moscow, Munich, Prague, Saint Petersburg, Tokyo, Toronto, and other more metropolitan cities around the world. Over the years, well over 60 cities in more than 25 countries have participated.
Part flash mob, part performance art, the responses The No Pants Subway Ride participants have gotten have run the gamut from double-takes to outright staring, to pretended not to stare, to patrons leaving the train, to riders being taken into custody. Oh, and one woman in Washington D.C. cursed participants in 2014 for, “riding around in public, with their butt cheeks hanging out on the Lord’s Day, during flu season.”
Click here for some videos of a bunch of past No Pants Subway Rides.
Unfortunately, the 2021 No Pants Subway Ride has now been canceled. From their website:
NOTE FOR 2021: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are cancelling the annual No Pants Subway Ride this year. We look forward to hosting more large-scale events once it is safe to do so again. In the meantime, we’ll be working remotely on an office in the middle of the river.
So many things have been canceled in the past almost-a-year due to COVID. The ceremonies for the Freddie Awards. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Conventions and concerts galore. So is it any surprise that the 2021 No Pants Subway Ride is canceled? Not one bit. But for those who like to participate (yeah, I wouldn’t be one of them LOL), I’m sure they’re disappointed.
Feature Photo: Improv Everywhere
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary