Sunday, January 08, 2012

No Pants! Subway Ride

The #Toronto 5th Annual No Pants! Subway Ride took place today at 3pm. What a great event to get Toronto laughing. Improv in Toronto say you only need two things to join in the fun: 1) Willing to take pants off in the ttc subway and 2) keep a straight face while doing it. You can see pictures from last year's underground event on Joe's post here. The worldwide phenomenon which started in 2002 takes place in 60 major cities and about 100 local participants gathered in Toronto at Queens Park near the horse statue, while fully clothed, to receive instructions and information regarding the event.

"Details: When: Sunday, January 8, 2012 at 3:00 PM, Sharp! (Over by around 5:30)
Where: Meet at the giant horseman statue in the middle of Queen's Park (to subway there, walk directly south from Museum Station. Bring: A backpack and a metropass/tokens. Do not bring: A camera (don’t worry we are taking pictures). Wear: NORMAL winter clothes (hat, gloves, etc), please do not dress to try and get attention. That completely defeats the purpose of the event."
TTC The Better Way sticker
After splitting into smaller groups they learned the rules of the game and then headed off to the north towards the Museum subway stop where they waited for appropriate trains and also doffed their pants to enter the underground train cars. Travelers waiting on the platform were surprised and confused by the activity and all the photographers. The No Pants people weren't supposed to give away the reason why they were wearing their skivvies and one of the reasons given out were 'it's a normal way to travel after work'.

 See more pants off photos after the jump.

Typical activities were playing on smart phones and tablets, listening to mp3 players, reading and like the lady above is doing: knitting. The players, sometimes alone, sometimes with a friend, or in larger groups got in and out of the trains, waited for the next train sometimes, while moving up and down the cars trying not to look out of the ordinary while photographers are snapping pictures all the while. They traveled from Museum Station to Eglinton Station, hopped on train traveling the other way, then traveled back to Museum where they celebrated their courage, group hugged and posed for photos.

The day ended up being almost perfect for a winter expedition with less than the appropriate amount of clothes. The adventures enjoyed being part of the secret group within Toronto's subway riding citizens. And those citizens remained polite and seem to really enjoy the fun that the improv members were generating. Some people asked others what was going on, but most seemed to just accept the undie wearing travelers with open minds and with a sense of humour. 
Initial meetup and briefing at Queens Park
This couple from Ireland wanted to participate but were too shy and she said her 2nd cousin Bono probably wouldn't approve
Citytv reporters join lots of other photographers documenting the event
This lady made me laugh. She came on the subway with her boyfriend not knowing about the event. He dropped his pants and gave them to her to hold. While he was acting normal in his underwear she asked us what was going on. She took it very well. Here is the happy couple below.

The lady in the middle is dressed for the arctic, the other two for No Pants! Subway Riding

The snow monster and penguin hats

Cole Banning of Improv in Toronto 

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