The Herald - The Herald Magazine
Should I shine my shoes noo?
HANDS up who still polishes their shoes? I don’t, ’cos I ain’t got no shoes. All I have are boots, and I let them keep their mud.
Waitrose has stopped selling shoe polish because of the shift to homeworking, where everyone wears baffies. Some people used to get obsessed by polishing. My mate detested anyone with shiny shoes.
That would have included my dad, who was always brushing his, as well as ironing his troosers. He was of that generation who’d wear a tie to wash the car. I mocked him mercilessly when a youthful rebel, but now I kinda admire it.
He picked up these debatable habits during national service and, indeed, I remember buffing my steel toe-capped boots when I was a prerebellion air cadet, training to be an RAF storeman or canteen assistant.
However, instead, I enlisted with the hippies, something I now regret. I could have been clean-cut. Instead, I became messy and talked pish aboot peace. Shoe-polishing symbolises soundness of character. Maybe I should take it up now. Aye, that’ll be shining bright.