(CNN) — Unless you are a professional basketball player or a postal worker, shorts for dudes are usually not in the office dress code. But what about the rest of the working malekind, whose poor legs are doomed to be imprisoned in pants during the long, sweaty summer months? Shouldn’t they, too, be able to feel the cool kiss of freedom on their leg hairs?
A young call center worker from the UK decided to test this. It’s been hot as Hades in Aylsebury, where 20-year-old Joey Barge lives, so he tried his luck with some semi-professional shorts.
Alas, he was denied, thus bringing about an unexpected double standard. As he pointed out in his tweet, if women can wear skirts at work, why can’t he wear shorts?
The problem is, despite the best efforts of fancy toddlers and high-brow dressers like Pharrell, business shorts aren’t really a well-trafficked avenue of male fashion. And — this is just anecdotal — not many offices are super comfortable having their male employees jam around like they’re about to attend a clam bake.
No pants, no problem
So, Barge decided to test his company’s tolerance (and sartorial logic) by slipping into something a little more comfortable: A dress.
If a man can’t wear shorts to work, are you going to deny him the ultimate comfort and breathability of an office-appropriate frock?
His office responded with some happy news: Shorts would be allowed, but only at 3/4 length and only in solemn, business-y colors.
Yes pants, yes progress
For the record, it looks like 3/4 shorts are, in fact, one standard deviation away from manpris, but progress is progress.
Barge said he had to get creative to avoid looking like he was about to go for a mountain hike.
“I bought chinos and cut them and pressed them to make them smart,” he said on Twitter. “It’s better than trousers.”
If past male trends are anything to go by, his sacrifice will be but a harbinger of things to come. We are at a convergence; can you feel it? It’s…the Leggening.
The shape of things to come
First there were formal shorts. Then there were manpris (man-capris). Male skinny jeans were constrictive, but still, they highlighted the male leg in a way we hadn’t seen since our forefathers signed the Declaration of Independence with their stockinged calves on display.
Then, there were the male rompers, and with them, some unholy takes on the male summer statement short.
Now, the era of work shorts is about to dawn.
You have seen the signs. You have heard their stories. The men demand comfort. The men demand inclusion.
Like the blinding rays of the sun, their legs will rise again.