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April 12, 2013 / neiltheseal85

An open letter to Country Road

(Alternate title: I bought a pair of shoes that nearly killed me)

I am writing this as a way of alerting Country Road and their customers to a serious design flaw in one of their products. Hopefully this letter will convince people to value their lives over fashion and to not make the same mistake that I did. Also, I hope that Country Road will see some sense and recall the most dangerous product in their catalogue and the most terrifying non-violent weapon ever created.

The product that I am talking about is a seemingly innocent pair of shoes. I have bought shoes from Country Road before without problems. They were comfortable, lasted a long time and did not cut up the back of my feet during that time where you have to wear them in. For these reasons I felt comfortable buying another pair of shoes, although I bought them online this time. Naively I thought that the worst case scenario when buying shoes online would be that I would get the size wrong and have to return the shoes. How foolish I was.

Seemingly Innocent

Seemingly Innocent

But there was more to these shoes than seemed at first. Beyond their innocent and plain exterior hid a serious defect. They had clearly been cobbled by the Devil himself. They had wooden soles. Really Country Road, why would you make a shoe with a wooden sole? If I had wanted to buy wooden shoes I would have just bought clogs

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Caption: Which I did!

At first, the wooden soles were not so much of a big deal. Sure they made the sound of my footsteps obnoxiously loud and made everybody who I approached recoil in terror. Yes they made sure that anything that I stood on crumbled into a fine powder. I just assumed that, despite having a few issues, these shoes would still get the job done. They are just shoes anyway. At first having footsteps that made me sound like a horse was nothing but a mildly amusing novelty and a small inconvenience, however this honeymoon phase did not last long.

The first signs of trouble came when the magnificent wooden soles started to get scuffed. Pebbles stopped crumbling under the shoes’ might and now started to get lodged in there. I stopped becoming a welcome guest in my friends’ houses as my shoes now inevitably scratched up wooden floorboards and kitchen tiles. By this point I had begun to lose confidence in my new shoes, but I had not given up. These issues were small weren’t they?

I am confident that the product designers at Country Road have literally never walked a mile in my shoes, if they had they would have realised that they are portable death traps. It wasn’t until the issues of friction came about (or complete lack of it) that I realised that these shoes were actually trying to kill me. Soon the wood that was glued precariously to the soles began to break off into shards as did my ability to remain standing.

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From County Road’s user manual

At times I would find myself walking to work, quite innocently, when my wooden soles would inevitably connect with a small pebble or even the slightest decline in the surface of the ground. Upon contact, my leg would then shoot out in random directions, and on more than one occasion, I found myself doing the splits in the middle of a busy road. I bet everyone else found it hilarious. Running is an absolute no in these shoes. Even if the soles could even create enough friction to take a step forward there is no way that the shoes could stop the momentum created by such a move. To run – for the train or tram – means taking my life into my own hands.

Rain is another thing that poses a serious issue to my health and well being  I’m not even talking about large amounts of rain, whenever the smallest amount of moisture hits the ground, these wooden shoes lose all friction entirely. If someone so much as sneezes in front of me, I will find myself ice skating all the way home.

I wish I was making this up

I wish I was making this up!

The most life-threatening incident that happened in relation to these shoes was also the most spectacular and the most embarrassing. I originally bought these shoes to wear at my wedding and at the time I was blissfully unaware of their murderous inclinations. There were some slight mishaps during the reception but nothing that I couldn’t handle, that was until I made the decision to carelessly walk down a small wooden staircase that lead to the main area where everybody was enjoying themselves. There must have been the smallest amount of moisture on the stairs and when the wooden part of my sole connected with this moist wooden step it caused the most outrageously spectacular result. Instead of happening in slow motion, the events unfolded in super fast forward. My legs shot out in front of me and I landed arse-first on the steps surrounded by people who thought I had just killed myself at my own wedding. Fortunately I was ok and the only injury I suffered was a bruise on my bum that lasted for about three months. This story isn’t all bad though, my spectacular fall taught me that I have reflexes of a cat. At the time of the slip I had a full pint of beer in my hand and I DID NOT SPILL A DROP!

To finish, I ask that you, Country Road, immediately stop selling these shoes and that you promise to never again put wooden soles on your shoes. Or if you do make wooden shoes I ask that there be a large sign reading “CAUTION novelty shoes with wooden soles, use at own risk” so that unsuspecting shoppers like myself are aware of the risks involved in making such purchases. While you continue to sell these shoes I will boycott all Country Road stores which is an act that I’m sure will bring the whole company to its knees. But seriously, these shoes have the stability of roller skates and should not be worn by anyone. No that’s not true, there two types of people who may choose to wear these shoes: those who wish to die in the most hilarious manner possible and maybe contestants on those Japanese game shoes that seem to take pride in painful humiliation.

CAUTION novelty shoes with wooden soles, use at own risk!

CAUTION novelty shoes with wooden soles, use at own risk!

One Comment

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  1. flatpeaches / Apr 12 2013 4:01 am

    They certainly are dangerous! Maybe Country Road have made them so that anybody who buys one of their jumpers dies before they realise that they just paid over $100 for a piece of crap that will have holes and pill within a few months?

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