Aarian Marshall is a transportation reporter at WIRED and former CityLab contributor. She lives in San Francisco.
A Minneapolis dad’s frigid denim installations have embarrassed his daughter, amused his neighbor, and won the Internet.
Tom Grotting, your and my new favorite dad, makes his frozen pants sculptures like this: First, he soaks them in a bucket of water. Then he hangs them. Then he manipulates the denim as it freezes in the frickin’ cold Minneapolis weather. The whole thing takes about 30 minutes, Grotting told ABC News.
”The kids hate it,” Grotting said. “My daughter is in the band and had a big rehearsal with the trumpet players and she texted me and said, ‘Dad, the trumpets saw the pants.’”
But, oh, before preteen daughters can be embarrassed, there is the crucial final step, which is finding a public place for the frozen pants.
Sometimes the pants hang out in a neighborhood coffee shop. Sometimes they live—all too briefly—near Grotting’s digital production company in downtown Minneapolis, where he likes to place the empty and animated trousers near parking meters so as to watch people “awkwardly squeezing in between the frozen pants as they tried to fill the meter” all day long.
Sometimes they hang out in his backyard, where they amuse his neighbor, Diane.
“The winter gets a little long and she doesn’t like winter very much so it’s mostly entertainment for Diane,” Grotting has said.
And sometimes they hang out on public roads near golf courses.
And then, as the snow will melt, as the blizzard will pass, as this frozen wasteland will one day turn to spring, the pants eventually fall.
Goodnight, winter. Goodnight, pants.