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Life Lessons

Fellas, Our Horrible Climate Future Demands You Wear Short Shorts

Bad Bunny performing on stage in Philadelphia in 2022, wearing an outfit with red shorts while sitting on a beach chair while enjoying a beverage.
Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Roc Nation

When summer finally arrives, typically in an unwelcome slap to the face at some unknown hour in the transition from May to June, my mind always goes to linen. I wish I could say this impulse came from my summers spent as a personal valet in Saint-Tropez. Sadly it's the cost of a career that, until this point, required me to be in office settings that demanded "work wear." If I was required to wear long pants in the the hottest time of the year, then I would embrace the breathable and light comfort of linen rather than it's dour country club cousin, the chino.

Linen pants are great! Who doesn't love to slip into something so versatile that it works just as well running errands as it does on a dinner date. And yet, there remains one small problem. They are pants. Summer is the time of shedding layers and inhibitions, it is the high season of shorts. And for many men this means you must choose a side in the never-ending inseam wars. If you are wearing shorts while reading this, please halt here to go find a tape measure or ruler.

Would you say you are more of a mid-length guy, who favors shorts that gently kiss the top of the kneecap? Does your taste fall south of the knee, finding peace in the era of And1 mixtapes and Allen Iverson crossovers. The inseam wars are a murky and messy business. The proper length of a pair of shorts is no simple matter of fashion, it clouds men's minds and temps definitions of masculinity, inviting no shortage of breathless, pragmatic and outright horny coverage on coverage of ones midsection.

How could I be immune? I survived a childhood in the 90s and a post-college life in the aughts, I lived with my share of cargo shorts and baggy denim. No one should live long enough to see JNCO's be resurrected again. And yet there they are, on the street, among us, mocking us! Surviving all of this has lead to only one conclusion: It's time to embrace that carefree above the knee lifestyle. Maybe it's the glut of soccer tournaments on TV, or the siren song of bro summer. It is absolutely the 15th incarnation of Doctor Who. Either way our gams demand freedom.

Consider the current archetypes for shorts wearing:

Jose Perez/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images
Jacopo M. Raule/Getty Images for Gucci

The choice is obvious! Why let your legs drown in a sea of moisture wicking nylon and microfibers when you could be breezy and carefree? You're not fooling anyone in those athleisure pantaloons, you're not crossing anyone up on the fly when you're running errands! Why risk going Rudy Giuliani mode when you could be be bold and sexy. Remember: be your best, get thee inseam to five inches or less!

Perhaps you are saying I am not ready, I am unsure. What if I am a girthy lad, or a wisp of man, and I feel safer in the confines of an inseam that reaches for the earth. It is true you should always wear what makes you feel like yourself. But have you considered the only thing stopping you is shame whispering in your ear? It is restrictive and stultifying masculinity that is better left for dead in the laundry pile. We don’t have time for shame!

As our climate cruises past the point-of-no-return into a full blown apocalyptic inferno, do we really have time for these squabbles? If the planet is only going to get hotter, shouldn't we all let our shorts get a little shorter? If mankind won't take a stand on destroying the planet, at the very least free your thighs from the silly trappings of gender essentialism.

It is comfortable, it is efficient, it is just a little sassy? Slutty even? And given the trajectory of the year 2024 it's time to take all the simple pleasures while you can. If there has ever been a year where tomorrow is more uncertain, it's this one. Life is short, make your shorts even shorter!

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