The pants! I've just learned the answer to the pants! (probably a WCCO thing)

See, there were these brothers-in-law. And the one (let’s call him Larry) gave the other (let’s call him Bill) an extraordinarily ugly pair of pants for Christmas.

I’m going to mix up the tricks over the years, but I’m sure Minnesotans of a certain age know the story.

The next year Bill gave the pants back to Larry…encased in concrete. The year after that, Larry returned the pants…encased in concrete inside of a tractor tire. The year Bill took the same pair of pants, put them into a tractor tire, and dropped them on Larry’s driveway. The next year. Larry put them in a glove box, and put them into a car subsequently squished by a car-wrecking place.

I lost the story over the years, and moved away from home, and came back, and The Story Of The Pants ended up being one of those things that make people look at you like you’re nuts when you mention it.

Tonight, however, I watched On The Road by Jason Davis, and found that the pants (those poor pants) met a decent end. One b-i-l hired a truck to deliver them to anohter b-i-l.


In a jar.

And called an end to the feud.

Now I’m a lefty, and because I am I think that all is right in the world. But there’s this part of me that wishes the pants (remember the pants?) had been in the basement when the old Met was detonated. Or that they’d been in the Wabasha tunnels.

Or, maybe, there are a couple of Dopers who could’ve come up with a better end of the ugly pants…

I have no idea what I just read. But I liked it.

Thank you so much for telling us. At my house every time we talk about bad gifts we have to talk about “the pants” I thought that in addition to being ugly they were sheepskin and became very stiff when cold. I can’t wait to tell everyone.

This was the part about Minnesota I absolutely loved when I lived there. You people are crazy! But it’s a fun kind of crazy.

I’ve lived here damn near my whole life, and I’ve never heard of these pants. It’s a shame, really.

More detail about the various tricks, along with the reason for the pants’ eventual cremation, is available on Snopes.

Snopes gives a full account of this story - not sheepskin but moleskin. You can read it here

Ha! SuperNelson beat me to the delivery. Damn this 28K modem! :slight_smile:

That is the funniest thing I have ever heard of. How have I never heard of it before now? I’m just sad it’s over. Maybe I’ll start my own tradition…

Alas, the demise of “The Pants”.

My parents and grandparents had a ‘thing’ with a plastic Easter Lily, akin to “The Pants”, and every year the pants were alluded to upon the annual attempted gifting of the lily.
(BTW, Jason Davis and his lovely Brit accent is on KSTP. I love “On The Road”- just when I think Minnesota is as boring as, well, as we’re portrayed, he finds something to make me say “Wow!”)

What a great idea!
Except to do it with fruitcake.

That stuff is nuclear proof.

Is anybody else hoping this’ll be made into a movie – kinda like a cross between the Discovery Channel’s “Mythbusters” and “Grumpy Old Men”?

Pickles comic for 12/23…

Thanks for the Snopes link. I’ll print it out and give it to my mom - she loves the pants story.

Is this a Minnesota thing - or have other people heard about the pants?

I’ve never been to Minnesota (other than two sucky weeks in Rochester), so the word must be out.

There is no other kind in Rochester. Especially if you’re there to go to the Clinic.

IIRC, there was a similar gig between two relatives in the Chicago area eons ago. They didn’t exchange pants. Not even sure it was always the same item, endlessly recycled, but the means of delivery was always unusual. One year, a cubic yard block of concrete magically appeared on the lawn, and somewhere inside, was The Gift.

I was. (Not to fault Mayo; I wouldn’t hesitate to go back if the need arose. They do know their stuff)

I agree. They’re one of the best in the country. But if you’re sick enough to have to travel to Minnesota for care, you can’t be all that happy, is what I meant.