December 28, 2004

Not Lacy Enough

I just returned from doing errands with the two thirteen-year-olds of the household, a son whom I'll call Shaggy Hair, and a niece, whom I'll call Blonde Niece. It's very cold here in the northeast so we were running between buildings, since we do the logical thing of leaving mittens and hats in the car so we won't lose them. What annoyed me is that I had to keep stopping to tie my boot laces because they kept untying themselves. When we were back in the car, my fingers numb from tying the laces repeatedly, I reminisced to the kids about shoelaces when I was growing up.

Back in the day, sometime just after the middle ages when I was a teen-ager, shoelaces were kind of thin, usually plain in colour, and not very exciting to look at. But they had one huge advantage over the stylish, thickly rounded laces on the boots I was wearing today. They usually stayed tied!

I do not understand how laces have evolved into something that does not stay tied. Why would anyone design a boot lace that would untie itself repeatedly? Isn't the ENTIRE FUNCTION of the lace to keep the boot or sneaker tied? If someone out there has got an explanation for this, I would like to hear it.


New Kid on the Hallway said...

I have no answer to your conundrum, though I sympathize. Really, just wanted to say that reading your post reminded me of the funky innovations in shoelaces of the 1980s - do you remember shoelaces with actual patterns on them?? Like hearts in red, pink, lavender, and purple? Those are the ones that stick in my mind, but I'm sure there were others. Were you too cool to wear them? (I seem to remember they were de rigeur on the original Nike swoosh sneakers, which I had to BEG and BEG for...)

jo(e) said...

Oh, yeah, I remember the fancy shoelace fad. The ones I remember best were neon orange or neon green. Hot pink was popular too. My little sister used to buy fancy shoelaces and wear them round her neck as an accessory. It didn't cost that much to be in fashion in those days.

What Now? said...

I think perhaps the issue is that the shoelaces that used to be made out of cotton and were flat sometimes broke, especially when they were trying to hold together something heavy-duty like a boot. The new, round, synthetic-of-some-sort laces have the distinct advantage of not breaking. However, as you point out, they also don't actually stay tied! I'm not sure why no one has yet invented laces that stay tied and don't break.

L said...

Shaggy Hair boy was THIRTEEN when you started the blog. Isn't that absolutely MIND BLOWING?

Linton was an infant.