Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by mafoofan, Jun 16, 2013.
I just asked some coworkers. They are all east coasters and did not wear shoes indoors growing up.
I understand why people would think this and I tend germophobic, but that's why I try not to lick or eat off the floor. Also, I think it was Benjamin Franklin, or maybe Nikola Tesla, at any rate some genius inventor (Ron Popeil?) who devised something called a welcome mat which guests can wipe their shoes on to remove dirt. Perhaps it has some sort of ionized surface or other space age coating, like nylon pile, to remove germs, but at any rate, it's generally what people I know use to keep dirt out of the house and is remarkably effective. Perhaps that technology hasn't made it out to the east coast yet.
Also, I consider the floor to be like acid river at summer camp - once something touches it, you generally keep it away from you until it's been cleaned. Of course this is difficult because my wife throws pillows and duvets on the floor and thinks nothing of it.
I'm a bay area guy and have the same experience as itstillmatt - the only time I see shoes off in the house with guests is when people are extremely comfortable with each other and its a completely informal gathering where feet are on the couch. And I'm still generally grossed out by it. The thought of putting my feet in slippers that have been worn by previous houseguests is similarly unappealing. Perhaps the prevalence of hardwood floors vs carpet plays a role as well. Also, I haven't the least concern about wear and tear on flooring since hardwood floors last forever (at least 100 years for typical oak flooring used in SF).
I did go to one party that was shoes off and indoor/outdoor to a limited extent so people went outside in their socks and tracked in about 5x as much dirt as you ever would with shoes.
Sensible approach. Ironically I normally don't wear shoes around the house (because my own feet are inoffensive to me) but always put on shoes before guests arrive so that they take my example to do the same.
This experience also differs from my own. Typically the more well-off people I have known don't clean their own homes and don't mind the extra work for their housekeeper. All that said, the general rule in the bay area is that white people shoes on, asian people shoes off.
Thing is, I enjoy having the option to sit on the floor and lounge around on it. It needs to stay clean for that.
I've had hardwood floors everywhere I've ever lived. One of the great benefits of wood is the feel under your bare feet. Durability isn't the issue.
I grew up in Maryland in a shoes-off household (I am half Asian and was raised in a Japanese style house - though I am not Japanese). Pretty much all of my Asian friends had shoes-off households as well. However, none of my white friends did the same. It was so foreign to most of them that they'd never even heard of it, so it's not as prevalent a northern/eastern thing in my experience as in the foo's.
We are not a shoes off household officially but many of us are more comfortable without them. I usually lounge about without them. But we never ask guests to take them off - too impractical. I've thought about it at times because it does make for at least a cleaner-feeling home but when you have three dogs it's all out the window anyways.
I just don't understand how anyone can not have a shoes-off policy after seeing what the floor on a men's bathroom looks like.
My front door isn't connected to a public men's room - is yours? Obviously reasonable minds differ on the policy. I don't understand how people live with dogs (which are basically redistributors of bacteria) but millions of Americans have no problem cohabiting with them. We have a welcome mat which prevents most dirt from entering our home and we clean our floors regularly (or rather, someone else does).
And although I'm a germaphobe, let's be real here - dirt on floors isn't exactly a pressing public health matter. I'm sure there is bacteria on the bottom of my shoes (probably a shocking amount) but unless a person keeps their house much cleaner than any shoeless house I've ever been to, I think you are just substituting footborne bacteria for shoeborne bacteria. Millions of Americans live in shoe-infested houses and manage to get by.
If people want clean floors they should eliminate all carpets and rugs and clean their wood, tile or laminate floors more frequently. Whether they wear shoes or not is just a small factor in cleanliness.
Bacteria, shmacteria. I'm talking about half of the sand from the playground and all of the rubber "dirt" from the turf fields.
Was there ever.
To save you the trouble of reading all 40 pages, I am happy to report that the thread concluded this attitude is both correct and gracious.
Dirty shoes shouldn't be allowed in the house unless you're having a Tough Mudder after party (hey could happen, you live in Bernal right?). In shoe tolerant households, kids get yelled at for tracking dirt in the house - but not generally for wearing nominally clean shoes. As a practical matter, I generally take my shoes off at home when we aren't having guests, but I don't kick them off at the door, I do it when I get around to it. If I go mountain biking, hiking or traipsing around in mud, I generally change as soon as I get home and take care not to make a mess.
No shoes house does not mean no footwear, just no outside shoes. It has it's benefits such as much more comfortable footwear for around the house and removing dirty/wet shoes before tracking them all over the place.
The most rediculous version of this, a German fellow that i know is married to a Japanese woman who has an entire set of clothes for around the house that she will change into.
We're just building our immunities. When the apocalyptic outbreak happens, it will take those who live in shoeless houses first. Next will be the ones in shoed homes. Those of us with dogs shall inherit the earth.
Tracking in mud and dirt is not the whole problem. Just think of all the less visible stuff you step-in outdoors--worst of all, fluid and waste particles from both animals and people.
Those who wear shoes in the house--do you ever walk around barefoot? How do you feel about it?
Yes. I feel fine.
This is likely happening:
However, I am annoyed to discover that a ~$700 chair has to be assembled. What if I screw the screws too tight? I might not know until it's too late. Will the wooden legs eventually splinter or warp under the tension? The anxiety almost makes it not worth pursuing.
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