Saturday, 2:15 PM
Organizers plan 'no pants' event Saturday for the MBTA
Participants in a previous prank.
By Martin Finucane, Globe Staff
Knobby knees. Hairy legs. You can see plenty on the beach. You may also see them Saturday on the subway in Boston.
Some riders may be participating that afternoon in "No Pants 2K8," an event in which people will ride the trains in their underwear.
Organizer Adam Sablich said it's a "large-scale improv event," and that 400 to 500 people have expressed interest in participating through Internet social networking sights.
He said it's a spinoff of an event that's been happening in New York City for a half-dozen years.
The New York events have been organized by Improv Everywhere, a group that says on its website that its "pranks" are intended to "bring excitement to otherwise unexciting locales."
"We're out to prove that a prank doesn't have to involve humiliation or embarrassment; it can simply be about making someone laugh, smile, or stop to notice the world around them," the organization said.
Sablich, 25, of Haverhill, said nobody would do anything illegal and that participants could wear coats over their boxers or underwear.
"It's supposed to be something out of the ordinary that will get an interesting reaction. The whole idea is to give people a story to tell. ... The idea is not to inconvenience. It's not to offend. It's not to cause a ruckus. It's absolutely to give people something to talk about," he said.
The event will last from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sablich said he's definitely going to participate.
"I'm organizing it, so I'd better be there," he said.
Paul MacMillan, chief of the MBTA Transit Police, said just wearing underwear isn't illegal.
He said he didnít expect to add any staff for the event, but said officers already on duty may ride with the pranksters "just to ensure their safety and to make sure that it stays orderly."
"We don't have a problem with this as long as the participants pay their fare and ride in an orderly fashion and don't do anything inappropriate or illegal," he said.
He said some arrests were made in New York during one of the events, but that ride, which was unannounced, had caught police off guard.
"We don't anticipate any problems whatsoever," he said.