That told me that the moment has arrived to take things one step beyond and start wearing short shorts. Keep the early momentum going away from the Victorian zeitgeist. Help usher in that Late Victorian / Late Fifties atmosphere where things started shaking up a bit.
I'd planned ahead awhile back and bought the closest thing I could find to short shorts, these swim trunks by H&M in navy (minus the suss-looking belt). As the pictures show, they just look like jogging shorts or tennis shorts from the '70s and '80s. Although made from synthetic materials, they're not really clingy and don't cover a huge area of your body, so they don't make you sweat any more than normal. Not like a polyester leisure suit or whatever.
In fact, aside from being comfortable to wear, they're much more comfortable to walk around in because your legs are free. I haven't worn shorts this short since like 1990, and holy shit, locomotion feels noticeably more natural. Not as though today's shorts feel like burlap sacks, but they do trap some heat and rub against your skin more than they need to (i.e. not at all).
Sitting down, squatting down, and standing up all feel more natural too -- especially when squatting down to look at or pick up things near the ground. That's when longer shorts get pulled more against your legs. None of that feeling with real shorts. There's no "riding up" feeling on the mid-to-upper part of your thigh because there's hardly any material down there to ride up in the first place.
Needless to say, I can't see going back to medium-length shorts anymore, and will get the couple pair that I have hemmed, as well as turn slacks and jeans that I don't wear much into shorter-length cut-offs. If it's good enough for Clark W. Griswold, it's good enough for me.
Ha, I know... I heard you asking it already -- what was everyone else's reaction? You must have looked like a traveller from another planet with your legs showing in public.
For the most part, no strong reaction, visible, audible, or tangible. I noticed chicks checking me out a little more than normal, but nothing out of this world. Then when I was walking through a crosswalk, a car full of teenage or college girls who had to stop for me, let out a fanfare of catcalls -- "Yeah!" "Uh-huh!" "All right, get it!" Typically, even if girls think you're cute, they don't make catcalls unless you're dressed in some striking way, like wearing a suit with a bold pattern. It shows the guy isn't so self-conscious and feels a basic level of comfort with himself, even somewhat daring. In the back of their minds, if they had your baby, it wouldn't grow up to be a total wuss or a wallflower.
I didn't notice any disgusted or creeped-out looks from girls, though there could have been some, just given how prudish the culture has become. Most of them merely noticed a dude walking around with unusually short shorts and it didn't faze them enough to have it show.
As for guys, there was a tiny bit more of a backlash, but only among losers. Some fat black teenager turned around and gave me a mild "WTF?" look on the train, and a wigger or juggalo guy who rode past me on his bike turned around to give me what I assume was a "WTF?" look (he had sunglasses on). Both were wearing dumpy trashbag shorts themselves, so I took their reaction as a good sign.
Oh, and there was a sexually frustrated chump in that car full of girls, and he tried to yell something at me but got cut off or shut down by one or more of them. I couldn't hear exactly, but the tone was of a generic insult. The girls said something like, "Pssh, please" or "Oh, hell no" to rebuff his attempted cut-down. You can't try to slam a guy who is too much higher up on the attractiveness scale because it comes off so obviously desperate and pathetic, and by calling attention to the contrast or gap between you two, makes your own ugliness / dorkiness more palpable.
Overall, though, again the reactions were nothing noticeable from guys. I was hoping for one or two reactions like shouting out, "You cannot be serious!" in a John McEnroe voice, but I guess it's good enough that I didn't hear anything like, "The '80s are dead, faggot!"
It's weird, I didn't even notice the queers looking over or stalking me around any more than usual. That's what I was the most afraid of -- a whole gaggle of them flocking over and ejaculating their lisping, buzzing voices all over the room. Really dodged a bullet there.
So if you're the easy-going, no self-consciousness type, I say give 'em a try. You'll be surprised by how little people will react to them, and by how comfortable they feel to walk around in. It seems like people's reaction was mostly on an informational rather than an emotional level -- noting an occurrence, and ever so slightly updating their expectations of the world to be in a more informal and carefree direction than they'd believed earlier.