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#NoPantsSubwayRide 2016 - The Bare Legged Public Transport Takeover

Yes, this is actually a thing, and it isn't even all that new. Every year since 2002, the New York subway has born witness to hundred of bare legs as citizens have taken part in the 'No Pants Subway Ride'. It's exactly as it sounds, people simply get on the subway at specific points and all meet up on the train, sans pants (or skirts, or anything that might stand between your underwear and the outer elements).
It was originally started by the performance art collective Improv Everywhere, who have gained a huge YouTube and social media following thanks to their madcap stunts, which include turning a shopping mall food kiosk into a musical and re-enacting an early scene from Star Wars Episode IV, again on a subway train. With this, the participants sit apart from each other, and as more and more get on, the train is gradually filled with pants-less pedestrians.

In the 15 years since it went active, it has expanded from a phenomenon exclusive to New York into a global sensation. This year people took part as far afield as Tokyo, Madrid, Jerusalem, Moscow and right here in the UK. Other passengers were understandably confused, with a lot of bewildered social media posts cropping up asking why there were so many bare legged people standing around acting like they didn't know each other.

Overall, it seems to have gone off without a hitch this year, but twas not always thus. In 2006 the activity was halted by a somewhat overzealous police officer, who had the train stopped, all the passengers removed (pants or otherwise) and arrested 8 people. The case was thrown out of court, since there is no actual law against wearing no trousers on a subway train. The incident was widely mocked in the media, David Letterman even parodied it by doing a 'No Pants Cab Ride'. Since then it's more or less gone off without incident, except for one other case of police intervention in Istanbul in 2012.

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

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#NoPantsSubwayRide 2016 - The Bare Legged Public Transport Takeover Reviewed by Unknown on Monday, January 11, 2016 Rating: 5

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