If you have been reading my blog for a while, you will know that I take footwear seriously. Of course I’m aware that many things matter more in life, but my obsession and my entire work life are focused on shoes.

You can therefore imagine the shock and horror I felt when during Christmas dinner, my dad told me this story:

He married my mother in the early 1970s, and as was the norm for grooms at that time, wore a velour suit with flared trousers. Rather than splash out on brand new shoes, Dad decided to wear his black patent boots. He had bought that pair to go with a dinner suit, and not yet had occasion to wear them. My father would wear them on his wedding day.

As was the wish of my mother’s traditional English parents, my mother and father were married in a Church of England church.

In the Church of Scotland (which my father was accustomed to), it was not required to kneel at any point in a church service or wedding.

The December wedding went smoothly to everyone’s joy, and later, in the room where Dad and my mum spent their first night as husband and wife, my father took his boots off. Such a relief after a long day on his feet.

It is hard now to know what made this man turn those boots over, but when he did, he blushed from his toes to his (even then balding) head.

There were labels on the soles of those boots. Those labels told a story all of their own. They were bright red, shouted out “sale”, and (as my father realised) let everybody know when he knelt down in the church, how much they had been full-price, and the discounted price my frugal father paid.

The moral of the story is of course: REMOVE THE LABELS FROM YOUR SHOES!

Do you have an embarrassing shoe-related story to tell? If so, please write it here in the comments, or tweet me @shoeconsultant

Photo courtesy of Photography Life
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