I took off my pants because I was shy

People often ask me how and why I got started in this whole flash mob nonsense... especially people who've known me for a long time. You see, I used to be incredibly shy; almost agoraphobic even. So how is it I ended up hosting dozens upon dozens of public performances, many sans pants? It was kind of an accident. I wasn't planning on it; I was roped into filling in for someone else at a No Pants Subway Ride (in another city) last moment.

Shy-Bald-BoyI agreed because I realized my shyness was out of control and I needed to do something drastic to stop it, and fast. I needed to rip the bandaid off. Well, really, taking off my pants in public wasn't simply ripping off a bandaid; it was more like ripping off 20 feet of duct tape wrapped around my hairy leg.

Ironically, at the same time I was scheduled to lead throngs of people in depantsing I had also already scheduled a date. I didn't change my plans or let my date know; I figured the surprise would weed out anyone too prudish or boring. That's who I was, and I didn't want to be that. If I wanted to date myself I'd get a big mirror and a faster internet connection

I mean, I wasn't even comfortable wearing shorts, let alone a bathing suit. Now I'm going to take off my pants in the city (in winter) in front of strangers... and my 'way-too-hot-for-me' date??? And organize a giant crowd of pantless people??? I'm a shy introvert! Yet, it worked. I was terrified, and a bit chilly, but nothing bad happened. 

That's what I've learned from doing these; I have nothing to be afraid of. Even if something bad did happen, the worst case scenario is not as bad as being a prisoner to social anxiety. The best case scenarios have led to life-changing friendships.

My actions were drastic but they also opened up a lot of doors for me both personally and professionally. Yes - professionally. I wouldn't be where I am in my career had I not made that initial leap. It made me realize how much I was getting in my own way, which allowed me to then get the hell out of it. Maybe if I had seen this article from Anna North, I wouldn't have had to resort to such extremes. If you're as shy as I was, your next "adventure" might be as simple as a party, business function, or night club. Check out the tips on properly tackling stranger-interaction with the article, How To Deal With Shyness.

Why do you participate in these kinds of events? Log in with Facebook and let me know in the comments below!

P.S. The date went really well!