A Question for the Ages

I must bring attention to an urban phenomenon that has puzzled me since I was old enough to form thoughts. Why do people throw shoes over power lines???? I don't think I have ever passed this particular occurrence without asking that question to myself and after all these years, I'm no wiser on the subject!

This pair is over a line near my neighborhood and I have to pass it anytime I go anyplace. Like me, my kids always say "Mama, why are those shoes hanging there?" I just say to them, "Honey, I have no idea, but I'd like to know, too." It's one of those stupid things I obsess about and constantly look for (this isn't safe when your driving, trust me, I know). When things like this are a part of my consciousness I usually try to find some kind of creative route to bring about some resolution in my brain. This time is no different, so I've decided to create a photo collection of all the shoes over power lines I see. I will probably entitle it "WHY?????"

By the way, this particular pair hangs on the power lines outside a questionable Chinese Massage Parlor down the street that I've always wondered about. I wonder if there is a connection? Do you think this obsession is silly? Go google "shoes thrown over power lines" and you will be astounded. Look, it even has articles in Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoe_flinging I think as Americans we must get to the bottom of this before I go mad! I look forward to your shoe flinging explanations below (Sarah, I'm sure you have some insights for me!)


  1. Oh---We are the type of people that have to wonder why someone would throw away a perfectly good pair of shoes! Here's another one, while you are researching: Why is there ONLY ONE SHOE when they are by the side of the road? I always wonder how THEY got there...do that many people put their shoes on the roof of their cars and drive away? Are the two phenomena related? Is this some sick joke?

  2. Oh, man, you crack me up! BUT you raise some good questions...food for thought...

  3. Last year there was a pair of shoes hanging right at the entrance to our neighborhood. The kids and I were just as curious as you! After a few weeks they disappeared - so then begs the question "How did they get down?" and is it a hazard to have them there? I'd like to see you get to the bottom of this and then let us know since you obviously have too much time on your hands!

  4. havent you seen the movie "Wag the Dog?" with Dustin Hoffman?
    It is in memory of "old shoe".

    Maybe people fling them because it is fun to see if you can get them up there.
    who knows. I used to try and fling my purse up on the roof, just because I could. No real reason...


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Your Skin Fix, December Edition