short john

Minimum-protection shoulder-strap wetsuit design, covering a surfer's trunk, chest, back, and thighs, usually constructed with two-millimeter neoprene and a small back zipper. The short john— or "shorty"—is one of the original surfing wetsuits, along with the legs-covered long john and the front- zip long- or short-sleeve jacket.

From the mid-'50s until the mid-'60s, short johns were often used from fall through spring, as surfers more or less braved the cold as best they could. Today, with ...