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Itemized: Red Shorts by Steven Alan for Dockers

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Every week a different FADER staff member will pick a clothing item or accessory that he or she has lately been spending a lot of time with—or would like to—and write a little love letter to it. We would’ve done a column on who we’re dating but that seemed a little bit much. This week Matthew Schnipper talks the Barn Door Shorts by Steven Alan for Dockers.

My legs are gross. I don’t have spider veins or lumpy ankles or anything, but they are kind of hairy and I feel like, just in general, no one should have to look at them unless they are a doctor, we are at the beach or we are doing it. Up to last summer, I’d only had one pair of shorts since late high school, some Banana Republic slacks I cut off with dull scissors. They didn’t fit great and they were stained and made me feel semi-gross, but shorts are expensive and I already had these. Why buy a new pair when you only wear them four times a year? This was general wisdom until last summer when my Fuck-It Meter™ exploded with the rough heat and I bought a pair of shorts at J.Crew. I wore them constantly. It turns out dark blue goes with everything and, eventually, your legs get tan. The hair doesn’t go away, though. My legs look like the floor of a barbershop. But because I have the strength to accept the things that I cannot change, this summer, I’ll be unveiling a new pair of shorts, this collaboration between Steven Alan and Dockers, in a soft red.

I went to summer camp in preppy Connecticut in the ’90s and all the counselors wore Phish shirts and red shorts. I didn’t get into Phish until I accidentally Shazam’d them in a bar last year and, sure enough, a year later, the gear follows suit and I am turning into a Choate varsity lacrosse player. And those dudes looked like they were making out with blondes and occasionally doing whippets. It’s the kind of carefree lifestyle I endorse. Is it okay to project fun suburban nihilism against a shitty city grind? I am balding and way closer to 30 than 20. But I am going to try to fake it with heavy pastel above the knee. Please don’t make fun of my calves.

Itemized: Red Shorts by Steven Alan for Dockers