Real Men wear Shorty Shorts.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Jul 16, 2012
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The only reason I don’t wear vintage swim trunks every day of every summer—

Me, before my birthday party.

—so short so they’re super comfortable, liner included so no need for underwear, all I need all hot Colorado summer long—

…is ’cause it’s all people

mad men shorts

(especially women—guys, if you want to know what’s it’s like to feel objectified, here’s your ticket to feminism 101)

want to talk about every day, every time I wear ’em.

Me, I’d rather get through a day without talking about my shorts. I just want to wear them, ’cause it’s hot, and they’re cool.

So I’d like to kindly request that you shut the fuck up.

So I’m dredging up these photos, below, to remind folks that until Michael Jordan’s generation made long shorts cool, shorty shorts were everyday American Man.

And they’re bbback: there was just an article in the NY Times about how James Bond was inspiring the gay community, and fashionistas, to embrace the shorty short. Thing is, they did at least a few years back. So did hipsters—I’ve got a great pair of shorty shorts, with swim liner, from American Apparel, and have for a few years.

And if the stylish gays and the stylish hipsters are into ’em, that means Target nation is only a couple years away. So get on the shorty short bandwagon now, and impress your friends.

And make ’em normal and everyday again, so our friends will shut up about it, already.

Used to be, not just runners wore the shorty short. Used to be, it was manly.

For more blather about manhood, click here.


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


30 Responses to “Real Men wear Shorty Shorts.”

  1. Katie says:

    OMG. I laughed so hard. I work at a library and one of our patrons wears shorty shorts. We call him "Shorty Shorts" and/or "Hotpants". Maybe he's just too trendy for us.

  2. elephantjournal says:

    Today me and some pals were talking about shorty shorts…while we did maybe 20 women walked by in the shortest shorts imaginable, and it's totally taken for granted, no biggie. But a guy walks around in old school trunks, and it's all anyone wants to talk (and laugh) about, all day long.

  3. Duff says:

    I hate that men's exposed legs are a fashion faux pas this decade. It's too damn hot for these capri pants that pass as "shorts" for men. Being 6'5", I have never been able to find a pair of shorts that fit other people's standards for the proper length of men's shorts.

  4. Andréa Balt says:

    Haha! Me when I saw your shorts: He wears that? How awesome. Adding to my top 10.

    I think the American shorty shorts are like the European thong. You people need to evolve in nakedness.

  5. Howie says:

    I prefer running shorts when working out and doing yoga, it’s more comfortable (for me at any rate).

  6. jwest says:

    not to agree 100%…but do most men understand how simply ridiculous they look wearing too-bagy too-long "shorts" ? seriously…check the mirror (or ask for a comment) on those plaid 3/4 length tent covers you have on!

  7. Ryan says:

    How does leg hair play into this?

  8. […] odd silk clothes that show cleavage or whole breasts, and men in too short short-shorts are not enough to turn me off to the rewarding and always interesting calling of teaching […]

  9. elephantjournal says:

    Not sure, my leg hair is pretty much blond, so don't think much about it. Either way, however, I doubt that Real Men worry about Too Much or Too Little Leg Hair.

  10. tridentgirl says:

    American men could use a little more flare, a little more style, a little more leg if you will. Bring on the short shorts! Two words: James. & Bond. (yum)

    American women on the other hand have WAY too many "trendy" things going on all at once (feathers, millions of bracelets, such short shorts one can see the ass cheeks, backlesss shirt, Ray-bans, a hat, braids, tattoos up the ying-yang, fringed purse, huge earings, and whatever the latest in shoe-wear is) they all look the same, way too cool for school. Who, what, when, where, how is the girl underneath all of the accesories?
    Two words: Paris. & Hilton. (yuck)

  11. elephantjournal says:

    Jenny: I saw one of the most beautiful men i've ever seen yesterday on my way home from work. He was wearing white "shorty shorts" like the 70s joggers wore and had a fluffy full head of blond curls and dark tan skin. Looked sort of like Tommy Ross from Carrie. Loved it! I support men in shorty shorts.

  12. JinpaG says:

    "…tattoos up the yin[g]-yang …" couldn't have said it better! Well, and the ass-cheeks showing from the shorts-so-short-they-may-as-well-be-undies. Nakedness is cool and all … but these trendy styles aren't really about the beauty of the body … they're about faux-sexiness. And faux it is. (And on tattoos, which I like quite a bit … in moderation: don't people know how much heavy metal they're injecting into their bodies when they get full sleeves, full leg-tats, or full-body tats? … these people have no idea what havoc they're wreaking on their systems … but they'll find out later. Sadly.)

  13. Roger Wolsey says:

    I wear "short shorts" but only when running. People look silly running in long shorts. That said, question: are you also favoring bringing back jockstraps? (kinda needed if exercising in short shorts)

  14. @yogatwit says:

    I wear short trousers, but I have a hard time finding them. Most men's trousers hang down at the knees. Pity. Where can I find short trousers for men that don't hang down too the knees. It is the same with trousers for men who practice yoga.

  15. @Joanespring says:

    You have nice legs Waylon.

  16. Tracy Schumacher says:

    I saw you on Pearl St today from behind and I knew it was you – you were wearing your shorty shorts! I rang my bike bell at your nice legs!

  17. TheBigJ says:

    Real men do wear short shorts. On that I agree with you. But it's not manly to wear them with button-down shirts–it's geeky. Real men wear them with tank tops. I walk around like that, and I'm 6 foot 1 and weigh 265 pounds–not fat–muscle. Big broad shoulders, muscular legs and arms, huge triceps and calves. I dare anyone to tell me I look effeminate or gay.

  18. […] all, I did name her after the great muse of all things sexy for a […]

  19. Carrie Tyler says:

    This totally made me laugh out loud when I clicked on the hyperlink that Elephant put in on the word "sexy" from my article ( to this article.

    Waylon – long live the short shorts. You have fabulous gams and should wear them proudly. I'd kill for those legs.

  20. […] that I had heard so much about, abominable yoga guy, completely covered head to toe in hair, and wearing shorts which left nothing to the imagination. photo courtesy Justin […]

  21. […] underlying issue of inquiry here is clearly Dong Culture. Dongs have been vocal in the comments of this column, and their demand for recognition is […]

  22. nick says:

    theres nothing wrong with guys wearing short shorts !! geez!! just let us do what we want

  23. […] Heaven Had a Yoga Class for Dead Hipsters, this is what it would sound […]

  24. Gabe says:

    some of my shorts are so short my ass cheeks hang out, and i have a few pair of nearly see thru shorty shorts, i dont care what other people think or say, its what i like, im not out to please every one elses expectations.

  25. James says:

    Hey Gabe

  26. Kathy says:

    I think they’re HOT! It speaks of confidence and comfort as well as the benefit of fashion. I wish more men wore them. Just sayin’.

  27. michellec433 says:

    Hey, if the shorts are proportionate to the rest of your body, then by all means wear them! Some men look good in short shorts while others look better in longer ones. Same goes for women too. LONG LIVe THE SHORT SHORTS!

  28. Bear says:

    Hey, in the 50's, 60's & 70's men wore real shorts and the bathing suites wear also short. The clown pants they sell as shorts these days look like shit. I use to buy shorts and cut off my jeans as short as the pockets would let me. Everyone did! I just can't figure out how 40 years later as men most are now afraid to show some leg.

  29. RockJock says:

    I have dark leg hair and rock the short shorts. Doesn't matter. It is your skin. I feel at home here in Austin with the short shorts, but when I go out to the small towns in Texas there is some pressure to conform. DO NOT CONFORM!