Monday, July 26, 2010


Sigh. The Tour de France is over. The FIFA World Cup is over. What am I going to do until football season starts?

Well, for one thing, I just learned that the back panel of a shoe is called the "counter." The upper part of the shoe that covers the foot is called the "vamp," and the strip of material that joins the sole to the upper is called the "welt."

Scientists believe that people have been wearing shoes for the past 26,000 to 40,000 years. (But I suspect that the cavemen didn't have "welts.") Ancient cave paintings in Spain and the south of France (see, there's the tie-in to the Tour de France) show humans wearing shoes. And, an "Ice Man found frozen in the French Alps was wearing shoes at the time of his unfortunate demise around 5,000 years ago. (Back to France.)

Who knew? Well, probably a lot of people, but not me.

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