Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Degrees of Firmness Part 2

re-post

I think for friends I would go for the very direct no.6 (Could you take your shoes off, please?) and for people I did not know, I would use the more restrained no.4 (Are you alright with taking your shoes off?).

It may be that you are just too shy to use the more direct requests. However, you might find that the softest approach no.1 works a lot of the time. If you are barefoot and there are a lot of shoes by the door, you may get the right reaction just by saying:


You can take your shoes off here, if you like.

21 comments:

richyrich said...

I think I've said on here previously that I am thinking of letting out a spare room in my house to a lodger (only temporarily though) Although I have advertised in an online agency I haven't had much response so far and I decided to approach a lettings agent to try and find a lodger for me.

The agent is coming to see me on Friday at my house and it will be interesting to see if she will take her shoes off upon arrival without being prompted. If she doesn't I will definately ask her to do so. I will probably use No 6 on the "Degrees of Firmness Scale" (after all I will be a prospective customer of hers so she will no doubt be keen to comply with my wishes) I will also try and ask her advice on how best to handle the issue with any lodger I end up having without alienating him/her.

I will of course be saying on here how the visit went.

Celestial Fundy said...

Thanks.

If she does not comply, you can always use another agent.

richyrich said...

Well yes, but even if she doesn't like the idea, she'd be extremely foolish to turn away the prospect of business worth hundreds of pounds to her over such a matter!

Eulalia (Lali) said...

First things first: I LOVE your header! Always good to find a fellow fan of the pre-Raphaelites. Re: shoes off, I'd be happy to comply if it was a cultural norm, as it is in Japan and other countries. Then I would be prepared with the right kind of socks, slippers, etc. And as a yoga practitioner, I agree that being bare at least some of the time is good for the feet. Thanks for commenting on my blog.

Celestial Fundy said...

Thanks for visiting and leaving your comment.

If you know somebody with a no-shoes rule, you will be prepared for it, just like you would in Japan.

Mr.Anonymous said...

I've just read Jaques Seguela, a famous French image-maker, recalling he arranged a dinner for Nicolas Sarkozi, some other French top politicians and Carla Bruni and the latter one changed her high heels into slippers when she came. I think she cared of her comfort, but not the floor, yet anyway: if such a celebrity finds nothing weird in shoes-off whatever the reason is, then France is supposed to be a more shoes-off county than it is though about

Mr.Anonymous said...

pardon, I wanted to write "thought about"

Mr.Anonymous said...

http://www.vayama.com/greece-etiquette

"do take your shoes off" - no comments

Celestial Fundy said...

I thought Carla Bruni was not allowed to wear high heels, being rather taller than her husband.

Celestial Fundy said...

Interesting that page says shoes should be removed in Greece.

On the other hand, somebody asked about removing shoes in Greece on Yahoo! Answers. All of the replies said that Greek people keep their shoes on.

I also read about a half-Greek, Half-Bulgarian person who said his Bulgarian relatives all removed their shoes, but his friends in Greece refused to take their shoes off.

Apart from the page you provided most of the evidence is against shoes being removed in Greece. I suspect some regional variation is at work here.

Mr.Anonymous said...

The event took place before their romance started. And if she wanted not to scare him off with her high heels, why didn't she put on some low-heeled pumps?
On Greece: I remember somebody (in Yahoo answers?) from Greece writing it's different from home to home in their country.

Celestial Fundy said...

She is usually photographed wearing low heels or flats when with her husband. I have seen her wear some horribly bland loafers.

Mr.Anonymous said...

yes, but she has had to adopt this AFTER starting a romance with Sarkozi

Miss Nona Nonymous said...

What I find works the smoothest is simply having a little plate asking people to remove their shoes hanging in the entrance. They come in all sorts of flavours, and they can be more blunt than you could without seeming rude.
Mine says: "Please take your shoes off. The carpets weren't bought to clean your shoes."
If I said that to people they'd find me rude, but when they read it themselves, they find it funny. I never need to ask anyone to remove their shoes, they see the plate, and see my shoes stacked neatly beneath it, and then take their shoes off, accepting it as a custom of the house.

Celestial Fundy said...

Miss Nona Nonymous,
Thanks for visiting and leaving your comment.

Have you visited before? If you don't mind my asking where are you from?

Anonymous said...

Richyrich,

I may have missed it, but am just wiondering how you got on with the letting agent?

Was she happy to remove her shoes in your home?

Andrew.

Celestial Fundy said...

Andrew, I do not recall you sharing your own views on the subject.

Do you prefer people to remove their shoes in your home?

richyrich said...

I'm afraid that the letting agent didn't come after all. About 15 minutes before the time of the appointment she texted me saying that she couldn't help me and that I should go and look for another agent. When I then phoned her to ask why that was the case she declined to give a reason and just repeated that I should look for another agent. I don't know why she said that so close before the time she was due to visit but there you are. I'll now probably just look for another agent, exactly as she suggested I do.

Miss Nona Nonymous said...

Nope, that was my first visit, this is my second :) Nice site! I stumbled upon it trying to find out what the reason for the shoes-off-policy in Japan. Saw a couple of movies, and it seemed almost religious about their shoes-off-policy, so I thought it might be. Thus went to check it out. It wasn't...

I live in Denmark, a little country in northern Europe (for those in the unknowing). Customs here about shoes in the house are quite varied, depending on where you live, whether people have carpets on the floors, warm/cold floors and many other factors.

Celestial Fundy said...

Thanks for coming back, Miss NN.

I have heard removing shoes is very common in Denmark, but I get the impression the Swedes are a lot stricter about it.

I have been to Copenhagen airport (on my way to Helsinki), but that is all I have seen of Denmark.

I like Anton Berg chocolates.

sandro said...

Dear Ms.NN
May I ask you a couple of points about the Denmark shoes-off etiquette? Is carpeting a reason to take your shoes off or the opposite? Do the Danish people tend to remove their shoes not to scratch the hardwood floor? (I actually red the latter in a book about Danish social culture). Thank you in advance