January 14, 2013

No Pants Subway Ride – Enlisted Edition

No Pants Subway Ride – Enlisted Edition

Simply, the point of the yearly “no pants” subway ride is not to take ourselves too seriously. That’s some curveball the editors at Zimbio throw, however, leading off the 12 photo edit with the shot above. Whether we’re talking about the military’s rough go of it over the past ten years in Iraq and Afghanistan, or maybe there allusion is to breaking the sexual orientation barrier, it’s quite confounding to see a soldier stripping for a photographer for the national newswire. And, if the inclination is to still take the moment in fun, the tension and discomfort coming off those other passengers isn’t helping any.  I understand it’s for play, but it’s hard for me to see this any other way than the army caught with its pants down.

But then again, with the kind of teflon the military has built up since 9/11, the militarization seemingly unending, perhaps this soldier was pretty brilliant.

(photo: John Moore/Getty Images. caption: A soldier takes off his pants while riding the subway on January 13, 2013 in New York City. He and thousands of others participated in the 12th annual No Pants Subway Ride, organized by New York City prank collective Improv Everywhere. During the afternoon event, participants boarded separate subway stops and removed their pants, pretending that they did not know each other. The event, referred to as a “celebration of silliness” is designed to make fellow subway riders laugh and smile.)

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Michael Shaw
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