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Man Freezes His Trousers, Turns Them Into ‘Dibs’: ‘Pants Are Always Funny’

Chicago author Adam Selzer used his time during the city's deep freeze to see if a frozen pair of pants could secure a shoveled-out parking spot. The move has delighted Chicagoans on social media.

Frozen-solid pants make for good dibs items, one West Ridge resident learned.
Courtesy Adam Selzer
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WEST RIDGE — A West Ridge man has come up with a novel way to mark “dibs” on a Chicago parking spot: by using a frozen-solid pair of pants.

Adam Selzer’s photos of a pair of frozen pants standing stiffly in the street is delighting residents on Twitter.

Selzer’s effort combines two local internet fascinations: finding out what can freeze during bone-chilling temperatures and snapping photos of the curious items used for dibs.

The polar vortex of 2019 created a number of viral “challenges,” including the tossing of boiling water into the chilled air, which turns the water into vapor. Every winter, Chicago residents also debate the merits of dibs — the saving of a shoveled-out parking space by placing an item in the space — while also documenting some of its craziest forms.

Credit: Courtesy Adam Selzer
After freezing a pair of wet jeans in Chicago’s frigid temperatures, Adam Selzer noticed they work well for dibs.

Selzer tried the frozen pants trick last polar vortex, when he soaked a pair of jeans in water and set them outside to freeze. He found that the pants can be made to stand up on their own while in the process of freezing.

With Chicago once again in the grip of dangerously cold temperatures, Selzer on Saturday tried the trick again. He photographed the pants on a snowy West Ridge side street.

A couple Twitter uses made jokes about the pants acting as dibs, and so Selzer decided to try it out — even though they aren’t in a legal parking spot.

“Pants are always funny,” said Selzer, an author, historian and leader of Mysterious Chicago Tours. “I’m glad people are enjoying it.”

Selzer said the frozen pants trick works if you soak a pair of pants and leave them in freezing temperatures for about twenty minutes. At that point, they can be formed into shape. After another twenty minutes, they should be frozen into place, he said on Twitter.

No pants were harmed in the effort, Selzer said.

“I’m wearing them now,” he said.

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