The 11th year of Los Angeles’ No Pants Metro Ride went down on Sunday, Jan. 13, as the veteran and rookie agents of GuerilLA (formerly GLAImprov) joined their bold brethren for a perfectly absurd day, taking advantage of the local public train system sans trousers.
It all began in NYC when Improv Everywhere staged the first No Pants Subway Ride 18 years ago. Since then it has spread around the globe, calling to all — the ridiculous, the daring and the just plain adventurous masses who want to join in on something different on the second Sunday of the year.
The L.A. faction of this mirth for the masses starts when those embarking on the mission meet the agent assigned as their ride captain at one of the six rendezvous points spread out through the Los Angeles Metro system. There, they are briefed on the simple parameters: Take off your pants, board the train and try to keep a straight face.
We try to remind everyone that the true goal and fun of the mission is to get reactions from the unknowing commuters. My standby retort when asked where my pants are is usually, “Can you believe it? The damn cleaners lost them ... again!” and then I quietly return to reading the paper.
Once agents get everyone on the proper train, all six groups converge (almost) simultaneously on Union Station, heading upstairs for the fullest “exposure.” Most agents take this time to say hi to friends they only see once a year while wandering the terminal; some grab lunch, some just hang loose. You’ll find me and my crew making our annual pit stop at the station’s Traxx Bar. Then, as waves of reactions and reminders of the current time, place and scenario sweep through the station, we head out to take over a single train line together as one big, ballsy pantless army.
The past couple years we took advantage of the new Expo Line to Santa Monica but, due to popular demand, this year we returned to our roots and jumped the Red Line to Hollywood & Highland. Once we were there and the mission was complete, our lead agent (code name: Silky) gave the final debriefing to all before we filed up to the Hollywood Walk of Fame to take a group photo on the giant steps of its shopping mecca.
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Another pants-less mission was in the books and there was no longer a need to act casual, so we all filtered across the street to Pig N' Whistle for our official afterparty, with food and drink specials and a DJ (Joe Dana, in his skivvies, natch) helping us to celebrate the exhibitionist excursion's success.
We hope to see y’all next year! Over and out. This message will self-destruct in 5 seconds.