Monday, April 17, 2017

The Protocol School of Texas: Removing Shoes at House Parties

The Protocol School of Texas: Removing Shoes at House Parties

"I understand your hesitation when it comes to removing your shoes at someone else’s home. Whether your heels complete your outfit or you just feel uncomfortable being barefoot outside of your own home, taking off your shoes may feel awkward and almost too personal. But there are certain, and valid circumstances in which the request to remove shoes is appropriate and there is a right way to go about it."

The Daily Mail: Why you really should take your shoes off in the house: The soles are infested with diarrhoea-causing bugs

The Daily Mail: Why you really should take your shoes off in the house: The soles are infested with diarrhoea-causing bugs

by Stephen Matthews

Shoes are packed full of harmful bacteria picked up as people travel and these can multiply and spread on carpets and floors.

And just touching the infected surface could land you on the toilet for a couple of hours with the embarrassing stomach bug.

Study author Professor Kevin Garey said: 'It's amazing how far humans travel during the day, and all that walking drags in germs and bugs.'


A pro-shoes off story in the Daily Mail, the Darth Vader of tabloid newspapers. I absolutely hate the Daily Mail with its pro-Brexit stance and its hostility to immigrants. However, it's probably true that a lot of the readers of the Mail keep their homes shoe-free. This is where class comes in.

A lot of people with shoe-free homes are young, trendy, professional hipsterish people (like me?). However, a lot more are what you might call upper-working class people. Skilled manual workers and successful small business people. People who have done well for themselves and have nice homes. Such people have lovely white carpets and don't have the social pretensions that would keep posher, more middle-class people from asking guests to take their shoes off. Those are not the sort of people I would get on well with if we had a conversation about politics, but I'm definitely with them on taking your shoes off at the door.

Some of the Trump supporting Americans who follow me on Twitter favorite my tweets on removing shoes. They are probably a similar sort of people to those Daily Mail readers who keep shoe-free homes.

Yes, we British really are obsessed with class.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Pounding the Streets

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Guardian: Should you take your shoes off inside the house?

The Guardian: Should you take your shoes off inside the house?


by Stuart Heritage


"My brother is a fastidious shoes-off-er. I visited him recently and, within a couple of minutes, he gestured at my feet in horror. “What are those?” he asked. “These?” I replied, pointing to my trainers. “I bought them onli–” “No!” he yelled. “What are they doing on in my house?”

This is the best way to divide people. There are those who despise the thought of rubber on carpet, who lie awake panicking because wearing outdoors shoes indoors upsets the natural order of things. Then there are normal people like me, who don’t really care because they understand the purpose of doormats.

However, as much as I hate to admit it, the shoes-off-ers might be on to something. A recent study led by researchers at the University of Houston has shown that 26.4% of shoes carry Clostridium difficile, while a 2015 study claimed that 40% of shoes carry Listeria monocytogenes. Work on a farm? A 2014 study concluded that your boots are almost certainly covered in E coli. These are not the things that should be traipsed through living rooms."

This is from a 'shoes-on' perspective, but it's good to see this issue getting some coverage in a major newspaper. The comments seem pretty evenly divided.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Classic Conversion Story

After she sadly had her dog put to sleep, my colleague cleaned her carpets, which apparently required a good deal of effort. She's now asking visitors to take their shoes off.

It's quite common for people to adopt a shoes-off policy after having their carpets cleaned. Unfortunately, some people let it slip once they have forgotten the contrast between their clean carpets and their dirty carpets.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Keep Out Dog Dirt