General Question

spendy's avatar

What's with the one, lonely, old, stranded shoe on the side of the highway?

Asked by spendy (1446points) May 27th, 2008

I’m completely baffled by how common it is. Does anyone have an experience or theory that might explain this? Why the shoe? Why not one sock or one glove? What’s with the one shoe!!?!

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29 Answers

Allie's avatar

I’ve lost one flip-flop before. On a road trip to Mexico I was hanging my feet out the window and the wind took it off.
I don’t see how this would work for a shoe though. Aren’t they usually tied while on your feet? Maybe someone just really didn’t like the look of that shoe.

MisterBlueSky85's avatar

I always see random socks by the road. I even see them by the railroad tracks. WTF?

I’ve wondered about this before. Someone shed some light!

El_Cadejo's avatar

I have no clue about the single shoes. What also confuses me is whats with tying your laces together and then throwing them up onto the telephone wire?

babygalll's avatar

I’ve seen this so much where I live. I mostly see kids shoes and often wondered how a kids shoe got on the highway. Until one day my brother told me his 2 year old son asked him to open the window and his son took his show off and threw it out the window! Never knew the reason, but I am sure it is kids throwing them on the highway!

spendy's avatar

Kids shoes, I understand. But most of the shoes I see are larger, like men’s shoes. Sometimes a lone Converse, sometimes a work boot, I guess it’s just about anything really. I’m so confused about this.

Adina1968's avatar

You are psychic! I was just thinking about this today! I swear! I passed a converse sneaker while getting on an on ramp. This was a full size sneaker. Maybe it is the remnants of a horrible car accident! All that was left of the guy after he got hit by the truck was the sneaker! Yikes!

marinelife's avatar

I think it is a combination of all of the above. There was a terrible car accident here and in the news footage, there on the side of the road was one of the person’s shoes. I also think that on some of those tied sneakers the laces rot or they come untied and fall. Maybe one rolls into a ditch and one stays on the road. Maybe an animal carries one off. I also think wacky people are fooling around maybe threatening to toss someone’s shoe out the window and the wind takes it.

Socks are a completely different thing. As you all know from doing laundry, socks go walkabout. Clearly, they were told they were free-range socks and never looked back. The crossing a road or railroad track, they are hit and that’s it. They’re left laying there. My theory as to why they don’t leave in pairs is the yearning of a twin to establish its own identity.

Shoes, they just aren’t as independent-minded.

Seesul's avatar

The shoes tied together and thrown over a wire are supposedly a sign for a place for drug deals.

babygalll's avatar

Seesul: Is it really?

El_Cadejo's avatar

Wow just wow. Who knew there was so much history behind it. Its even a sport in New Zealand.

Allie's avatar

babygalll: Yes. It’s also a way to mark gang territory.

Edit: Good link, uber.

AstroChuck's avatar

What if the lonely shoe still had a foot in it? Oooh.

Seesul's avatar

single shoe is out searching for the single sock that went missing from the dryer

ebenezer's avatar

maybe the shoes were traveling together but got separated, leaving double the number of lonely shoes.

Allie's avatar

It’s like Homeward Bound, but with shoes and socks instead of animals. And there’s a bunch of them instead of just three. And they’re all split up instead of in a pack… ok maybe it’s nothing like Homeward Bound. =\

AstroChuck's avatar

When the one, lonely old stranded shoe gets run over by a passing semi, does its sole go to heaven?

bulbatron9's avatar

The other one was blown out by some poser who never skates switch!

Seesul's avatar

ac. That’s soley determined whether or not it walked down the right path during its heeling time on earth.

Seesul's avatar

…and put its best foot forward.


If the shoe manages to survive then Dr Schoal can heel it.

AstroChuck's avatar

I think it’s time to give these bad puns the boot.

judochop's avatar

it is also an art movement done by many, many street artists just for this reason. I have thrown many an old shoe out the window while traveling.

spendy's avatar

@AstroChuck + Sessul, you guys are killing me. I knew this thread would be laced with humor. :)

@judochop, seriously?

babygalll's avatar

@judochop: Hope you didn’t hit anyone in the head!

judochop's avatar

For reals. It is. And for the record, I don’t throw shoes at people.

mcbealer's avatar

@ bulbatron9 ~ that video is hilarious

marinelife's avatar

@bulbatron9 I second mcbealer. That was the final word.

omfgTALIjustIMDu's avatar

I saw a ratty old bra lying in the middle of the highway today. I guess that’s more easily explained than the shoes though….

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