At the time, it seemed like his team was on the cusp of a title but that obviously didn’t happen. Now his team is just two wins away from Chris Matthew getting to wear pants again.
On the one hand, I respect this man’s devotion to misery. Wearing shorts year-round in Canada is idiotic. It gets cold as all hell for some large chunks throughout the year. It’s currently 16-degrees Fahrenheit in Winnipeg which is most definitely not shorts weather.
It all began back in November 2001 when Winnipeg Blue Bomber fan Chris Matthew was certain his team would win the Grey Cup. Side note: I had no idea the Canadian Football League had been around that long so you can imagine my surprise to discover the CFL was founded in 1958.
As his story goes in the CBC’s article, he’s been stuck in shorts since that day:
In November 2001, Winnipeg Blue Bomber fan Chris Matthew made a casual bet when he thought his beloved team was sure to win the Grey Cup.
Still wearing shorts in November, he said he’d switch to pants after the Bombers clinched the cup.
“So ever since, I’ve been in shorts,” he said.
The ONLY time he’s worn pants throughout the past 18 years is to a funeral but ONLY if the family doesn’t know about the bet. “If they know about the shorts, I’ll still wear shorts to a funeral.”
He’s confident his team *can* win it all but that doesn’t mean they will, at least that’s the attitude he’s keeping throughout this playoffs run. And as you can imagine, his wife thinks he’s a total jackass for the bet but after 18 years she seems to have come to terms with it.
Despite his team being one step closer to the cup, he said they’ve let him down too many times for him to get too excited just yet.
“If they play as well as they did yesterday, they could beat anybody,” he said.
“If they don’t win, I’m fine. I’ve lived with this now for almost 20 years, I can continue, it’s not that big a deal. For their sake and for the sake of every other Bomber fan, I’d like to see them win.”
His wife, Darla, says she’s past the point of caring.
“I don’t care. He likes it, and I know that win or lose, he likes the shorts. And he complains, but I think he loves the attention,” she said.
“We have been walking down the street when it’s cold out. and I have a fur coat, and he’s in shorts, and people stare. And I just assure them, yes, he’s an idiot.” (via)
It’s hard to not think of this couple walking down the street in sub-zero weather in February with her face covered up in the fur hood of some full-body snowsuit and this dude slugging along in shorts and whatever it is he layers with up top.
The Winnipeg Blue Bombers are set to face the Saskatchewan Roughriders this Sunday in the Western Conference Finals. If they win, they’ll advance to the Grey Cup finals where they’ll then face the winner of the Edmonton vs. Hamilton Tiger-Cats Eastern Conference Final.
Two wins. That’s all he needs to start wearing pants again.
For more on this story, you can click here to head on over to the CBC.