Home » Stories we tell » DO I REALLY HAVE TO GET RID OF MY JORTS?



My husband has been telling me for years not to buy our son shorts made of denim.  I could not understand why.  He is a boy.  He is an active boy.  His new clothes last an hour before getting stained.  Shorts made of denim combine the airy freedom needed in summer heat, together with the durability and stain resistance of tough denim.

Fashion flash for all you people equally as challenged as me:  shorts made of denim = jorts.  Check out Urban Dictionary’s multitude of definitions here.  Jorts are now the equivalent of wearing George Costanza’s sweatpants in public.

Confession:  I have jorts and I wear jorts.

There.  It’s out.  I’m out.

I love jeans.  I love shorts.  Here is my Ode to Jeans. Why can’t jeans and shorts be combined fashionably?

Or maybe you are asking, “But Claire – your son is justified in needing rugged shorts.  Are you also playing cops and robbers in the woods, or driving toy trucks up and down the driveway, or maybe even  playing flashlight tag on weekend evenings?”

Of course not.  None of the above.  I like jorts because I spill things on myself, sit down on things that will stain my rear end, wipe my hands on them while cooking … oh dear, this is not going well.

One pair of jorts went in the trash last week.  They clearly were a denim version of short sweatpants, with the Seinfeld message:  “I give up!”  The second pair must also meet the trash can, now that I have publicly confessed to this fashion faux pas.

Ah, well.  At least I have my denim capri pants to fall back on.

Wait!  Whaaat?  Capris are a clear indicator of a middle aged women out of style?

Oh, Lord.  Time for a glass of wine.  Unless you want to tell me that THAT TOO is out of style?



About Claire Ziamandanis

Claire Ziamandanis is Professor of Spanish at The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY. Over her 20 years at the college, she has been a champion for study abroad, establishing the first affiliation for Spanish students, and then working with the Study Abroad office to open the doors to students from other majors. Claire loves travel, food, wine and Spanish but not necessarily in that order!


  1. Claire, Claure, Claire. I just can’t picture you in jorts unless we were paddling down the muddy Mississip on a raft ready to jump into the mud looking for frogs.

    • Um, Chuck…. why didn’t someone tell me???? I have been in jorts to the local grocery store, to the mall, pretty much everywhere but the golf course, only because it requires a stricter dress code, which I have truly resented! Yeah, yeah. Stephen did tell me, but only regarding our son! I guess that was a hint?

  2. Claire – I asked Sara (resident fashion guru) and while she chuckled at the idea of Dennis
    In jorts, it seems that for the “younger” crowd jorts are appropriate.
    It is just us mature girls for whom jorts are forbidden fruit.

  3. I am probably betraying my complete fashion ignorance (I had no idea what jorts were until this post), but I think this doesn’t hold for women (says the woman frequently seen in capris). Seriously though, if the college girls drawing all over the place here are any indication, jean shorts (particularly the short cut-off variety) are definitely not lame. Note urban dictionary only talks about jorts on men. For guys, not so much. I say, keep ’em!

    • Camila – I think the choices for women are either real short or not at all. And at a certain age, “real short” can be real gross less than appealing? Jorts are clearly a guy no-no, but I think for women, it is an age definer. Unfortunately, I think I will be wearing stained khaki and white shorts from now on.

  4. Stained Khaki? A whole new color! I gave up on shorts at about 8 years old. Same with bare feet. Some things just look better under wraps. I do wear jeans now and again, but it makes me think of my mother when she was old and trying to look fashionable. By the way, have you noticed that Honda is the new Buick.

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