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The world is full of mysteries. Some of them are intriguing. Some are baffling. Others are completely idiotic. Keyless entry cars for example. They work by sensing that the car key is nearby then they open the door automatically. What is so good about this weird idea? Keyless entry cars are easily stolen because wily thieves can simply copy or ‘clone’ the key even if it is safely locked up inside the house. To prevent this happening you should keep the key inside a microwave unit or wrapped up in tin foil like a chicken sandwich. What is the point of all this malarkey? To save that nano-second spent using an old fashioned key?

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Holiday or second homes are another peculiarity, particularly those in foreign countries. They’re rarely visited but always require expensive upkeep. Having a holiday home can also severely limit your choice of vacation if you want to get the full value out of it.

And then there are open toe sandals. What are they all about? When I was a child in the summers of the early 1950s, long before the invention of trainers, all kids wore sandals - apart from those oiks who wore plimsolls which my mother considered cheap, nasty and bad for your feet. The sandals the rest of us wore were usually, all the same, made of brown leather, with a closed toe and fastened with a strap and a buckle. They were difficult to clean - a hand tattooed with boot polish was the usual result - but most of us solved the problem by not bothering. They were easy to wear, kept your feet cool and your socks relatively clean and if you were foot flexible enough you could take them off - and put them back on again - without undoing the buckle. Most importantly you could kick a football in them or that annoying kid next door. Then the fashionistas started wearing open toe sandals and the rot set in…

There are many reasons for not wearing open toe sandals …and particularly those that you fasten with Velcro.

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  1. Wearing open toe sandals is like wearing shovels on your feet. Walk across a beach or grassy field and the next thing you know is that you have a boot full of sand, grass, fag ends, sweet wrappers and anything else equally nasty - animal, vegetable or mineral - that might be lying around.
  2. Velcro fastenings are equally efficient when it comes to picking up stuff. Go to East Sussex for the day and you’ll come back home with half of Camber Sands trailing behind you. If you have ever wondered why Birnam Wood went for a walk in “Macbeth” it is because Malcolm’s army was wearing open toe sandals!
  3. Open toe sandals are a great way of displaying what is best left hidden - disgusting toenails, bunions, toe-jam and any other debris trapped between the toes.

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The popularity of open toe sandals and their little friends - sliders and flip flops - has resulted in a gradual disappearance of traditional closed toe leather sandals with buckle fastenings. Even Clark’s, the once great supplier of time-honoured ‘schoolkid’ sandals, seem to be hiding their stock somewhere out of sight. What are we closed toe sandal aficionados to do? Socks with Sandals? Ask Footy Scent and his chum Hush Puppy!

– from Martyn Day