Shoes Hanging in The Balance

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We will always have those shoes that we want to get rid of after owning them for a certain period of time, right! No doubt about it! Some people can think of the most creative ways of sending the shoes into oblivion. If anyone is thinking of “shoefiti,” then he/she is correct!

So, what on earth is shoefiti?

Shoefiti, which is also called shoe flinging, is a very common, but less talked-about subject matter in the United States and Canada. This is also a practice that is seen in other places globally, such as Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand. These shoestrings are tied together and are thrown on telephone cables, power lines, and/or overhead wires.

My question is how do people manage to throw his/her shoes on these wires without hitting innocent people that are walking, or cracking someone’s car windshield? To be very honest, I do not know, but there are many stories behind shoefiti, but the reasons remain a mystery.

According to some people, the reason that shoefiti exists because it represents a nearby crack house, which is also known as “Crack Tennies.” It may also symbolize that once an individual try heroin it is very difficult to kick the habit. The more sinister story is the shoes are a memorial for a killing that is gang-related, or a slain gang member.

Shoefiti goes beyond the inner-city dilemma. It also takes place in suburban and rural areas, except that most of the story connections tend to be less sinister. In some areas, shoes are hung on wires and cables to celebrate the end of the school year, or an upcoming marriage as a ritual. For example, in Scotland, a young man throws his shoes on phone wires once he loses his virginity. This is “spreading the news” to his friends. Other individuals say that the shoes are stolen property that are thrown across the wires either as a practical joke on drunks or being a bully. Many people just want to get rid of his/her shoes because it is full of discomfort, become tired of them, or simply do not fit.

There are many neighborhoods that hang up shoes on wires and/or tree branches in memory of a deceased individual, which the shoes belonged to. According to some of these stories, the shoes are hanging in case of the return of the decedent’s spirit, that it is a step closer to heaven. That sounds pretty creepy! Let me throw in one more of these mysterious claims: shoe flinging on power lines outside of a house symbolizes the property remaining free from ghosts.

The phenomenon of shoe stories is pretty interesting, but there is a downside to this as well. In many cases, it can cause power outages due to the dangling shoes’ weight on the wires. Also, there have been reports that some individuals were attempting to take shoes from power lines, but were electrocuted as a result. This is a very tragic outcome.

Many of us will not be able to understand why people hang their shoes on wires, tree branches, etc. I know one thing: I am not hanging up my beloved shoes on wires and cables under any circumstances.



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