Now concedes that flat feet are not bad...


December 17, 1990

MEDICAL SCIENCE now concedes that flat feet are not bad for you and may even be good. Which prompts this reminiscence from one of our agents:

"Growing up in the Thirties with flat feet was a terrible fate, especially if your dad happened to be a fellow with a perfect arch who was proud of his military academy graduation ring. Early on in life, I had to get accustomed to the fact that I was a born reject, a lad who could never fulfill his father's dreams by gaining entry to the Naval Academy.

"But that was only the start of it. The high corrective shoes I was forced to wear were a constant humiliation. Especially because most of my buddies sported sneakers -- sneakers without arch supports!

"Then there were the jacks and marbles. They were not for play, at least not for me. For 15 minutes a day, I had to pick up marbles or jacks with my toes as a means, I was told, to build up my lousy arches. Each day I would feel for evidence of improvement. No luck.

"The humiliation and the regimentation registered senseless on my youthful scale of values. For my feet felt fine. They didn't ache. They didn't hurt. I could walk. I could run. Even on long hikes, my dragging and groaning were not the result of pain but of laziness.

"How I longed for adulthood, when I could blend into the general population without being stigmatized. And yet, when that bright day came, I had become so brain-washed that I began a lifetime of wearing Wright Arch-Preserver shoes. Yes, they have preserved my arches. They have kept them flat.

"Now all of us flat-footed folk can walk proudly in the sunlight. Content in our comfort, we need not be condescending to the poor blokes whose insteps are so high they get an occasional pain in the arch."

AH, THE WONDERS of America's modern-day telephone service. Thanks to advances in technology, you can dial up virtually anything your heart desires these days.

Take the example of 1-800-WANT-POT, a toll-free number for a $30,000-a-day drug operation. It was recently "disconnected" by New York City police. When a customer dialed one of the five constantly-ringing lines from any Manhattan location, he promply received a packet of marijuana from a bicycle messenger.

The success of such an operation makes us wonder how long it will take for the spirit of ingenuity and enterprise to bring about the advent of such "services" as Dial-A-Rolex and 1-800-HOT-CARS.

BURGER KING was recently found in violation of child labor laws. The company's slogan rebelliously boasts, "Sometimes you gotta break the rules," but, apparently, the company has found that sometimes you gotta conform to them, too.

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