Minor British Institutions: Men in shorts
Saturday 11 June 2011
The British male has an invincible compulsion to show a bit of leg, even though it is rarely appropriate, or fetching. Our climate, after all, doesn't often demand drastic lower ventilation; and the most common cut of leg is blobular thigh married to challenged calf, usually of a mortuary or mottled hue. The oft-accompanying socks, too, nod to the knotted handkerchief rather than the sportif (although they do at least cover up the feet).
So what is going on here? Why are there more and more men in shorts? Why do they now appear with the first primroses, and sometimes all year round? Well, there's the obvious influence of foreign holidays, but I think it's more to do with a hazy, inherited imperial hotchpotch of mad dogs, midday sun, gin slings and Carry On Up the Khyber: what you see might not be pretty, but it is a fine and jolly example of our famous sense of humour, both conscious and unconscious.
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...
£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...
£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...
£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...