Today we’ll hear a few curious tales involving shoelaces. Yes, you’ve read that right, strangely enough. Let’s go:
Who spares a second thought for shoelaces? Sure, they’re great for fastening our shoes and keeping them on our feet, but that’s about it. Isn’t it? Well, as humble and everyday as shoelaces may be, sometimes it’s wise not to take them for granted as these 5 crazy shoelace-related stories demonstrate.
5. Museum Trip
Whilst visiting the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge in 2006, Nick Flynn was on a staircase when he inadvertently stood on one of his shoelaces and fell down the staircases and crashed onto a windowsill. Unfortunately, the windowsill was occupied by three priceless Qing-dynasty vases which shattered into thousands of tiny pieces. The three hundred year old vases, which had been on display for sixty years, were painstakingly restored over six months and now live in a protective case. Mr Flynn walked away from the scene unhurt.
4. Screen Saver
As though rally driving isn’t hazardous enough on its own, classic rally car driver Gwyndaf Evans and co-driver John Millington were forced to improvise when the single windscreen wiper in their 1973 Ford Escort RS1800 failed during heavy rain whilst competing in the Roger Albert Clark Rally in December 2011. In torrential rain and the darkness of a winter night the rallying duo tied their shoelaces to the failed windscreen wiper and operated it manually from within the car. Despite the shoelace shenanigans, Evans and Millington went on to win the rally by a clear eight minutes.
3. Not a lot of people know this…
…but screen legend Sir Michael Caine won’t wear shoes with shoelaces thanks to an incident dating back to his earliest days as a theatre actor. “I never wear shoes with laces. When I was a young actor on stage I was always very nervous. I even used to throw up,” he told an interviewer in July 2011. “Then one night, one of my shoe laces broke. It screwed me right up. I haven’t worn shoes with laces since.”
2. Live and let tie
Lance Corporal Michael Davies, serving in Helmand, Afghanistan, wasn’t aware that he was in the sights of a Taliban sniper until he bent down to adjust his bootlaces in the same split-second that the sniper chose to shoot at him. “I could feel the bullet go past my head – it was like a draught”, the 31 year old TA soldier explained. “The sergeant said if I hadn’t bent down I would have been gone.”
1. Undone by shoelaces
An attempted burglary didn’t quite go according to plan for 32 year old thief John Pierce. Entering a house in Dartford, Kent in August 2008 through a front window he had smashed, Pierce somehow inextricably tangled his shoe lace with the top of the window fitting as he climbed in. Unable to free himself, the inept burglar was left hanging upside down by his shoelace for an hour before the homeowner, Paul Ives, returned. Pierce’s pleas to be freed were ignored and a small crowd gathered outside to mock him and take photos until he was later cut down and taken away by police.
The Alternative Store sell a wide range of shoes and laces in alternative styles such as Iron Fist shoes