Lesson #74: Curling Shoes

My options for sports last night were limited. Much as I love hockey, I can’t deal with women’s hockey; it’s boring. I like a perfectly executed hip check like I saw in the Switzerland/USA game on Wednesday and women’s hockey doesn’t offer that.*  So a friend and I decided to watch curling. He’s kind of been keeping up with it, I can’t usually be bothered. But when given the option of the men’s semifinals or the women’s hockey final, I chose the lesser of the evils. Anyway, about 3/4 of the way through the Canada/Sweden match (game?) I have decided that I can’t figure out the shoes. I ask my friend. He doesn’t know. We move into a conversation about bathroom assassinations.**

So today’s goal was to find out how curlers can slide at will and have traction at will. The answer is ridiculously simple. One shoe, called the slider, is soled with teflon and allows the wearer to slide down the ice. The other shoe has a rough tread to give the wearer traction while sweeping (or walking). The whole concept is kind of like a skateboard in the sense that you push with one foot and glide with the other.

*I should state for the record, as both he and my dad suggested that I’m setting women’s lib back 50 years, that I feel this way about a lot of women’s team sports. I refuse to watch women’s football too (though I prefer women’s volleyball). As a rule, women’s sports are slower and more technical and while they might be “prettier”, I like grit. And speed. And power. I’m not against women playing the games at all; by all means go, play, have fun! I know I did when I played football, volleyball and rugby! I just don’t want to watch them.

**Like you do!

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