VIDEO: Subway riders go pantless

January 15, 2013 

VIDEO: No Pants Subway Ride 2013

More than 4,000 people in New York City went pantsless Sunday in a mass prank called No Pants Subway Ride 2013. This is the 12th year of the event, in which pranksters enter subway lines fully clothed, but strip down to their skivvies, much to the amazement of fellow riders.

The orchestrator is Columbia native Charlie Todd, who founded Improv Everywhere in 2001. Todd is also a performer at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York, and he’s the author of "Causing a Scene," a behind-the-scenes book about Improv Everywhere ’s pre-planned practical jokes.

In April, 2012, Todd gathered participants in downtown Columbia for a similar spontaneous prank, the MP3 Experiment. Participants downloaded an MP3 file, a mix of music and instruction around 45 minutes long. Without listening to the file, they synchronized their watches to the clock from the same website before going to Boyd Plaza in front of the Columbia Museum of Art. Then they pressed play at the predetermined time.

What started as a prank in New York City some 12 years ago, when seven guys rode the subway without trousers, has grown into an international display of silliness.

Tens of thousands more participating worldwide. Dozens rode the light rail in Charlotte on Sunday.

Video from the Charlotte ride

Staff Reports, with reporting from The Charlotte Observer

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