Top 10 unusual things to know about flip flops, THE summer shoe

Walking with flip flops in the summer is like driving a convertible, toes in the wind! Classy in Vegas and everywhere you put your little toes in this superb invention which is for our feet, what the thong is for our buttocks: a magnificent showcase!

1. The first flip-flop is over 5200 years old!

Which gives you a nice leg, you might say, but still. It was the Egyptians around 3200 BC who first wore flip-flops originally made of a simple rigid sole in braided papyrus and fitted with leather straps. Already at the time, these grolles were worn to avoid burning your feet on the sand.

2. The name tong was coined by American GIs during the Vietnam War

It is therefore to the US Army that flip flops owe their name. It is indeed with the word Thong which means “thong” in English, that the GI designated these funny shoes worn at the time by the Vietnamese to go to work in the rice fields.

3. The success of the Havaianas is due to a manufacturing error

In 2012, 50 years after its creation in 1962 in Brazil, more than 4 billion pairs of Havainas (which means “Hawaiian” in Portuguese) had been sold worldwide. Originally and for 30 years, these models were offered only with a blue and white sole with a blue flange. It took a manufacturing error in the early 90s during which the flanges were produced in green, for the brand to decide to market models in different colors. As for the small Brazilian flag that is regularly found on the pairs, it appears for the first time on a model created especially for the 1998 Football World Cup in France.

4. Quebecers call it “gougounes”!

Why not after all, they do call insects “bugs”! In Egypt, flip flops are called “chipchip”, “papa” in Chad, “flip-flop” in England and “slache” or “clache” in Belgium.

5. The Romans turned them into bling-bling pumps

First imagined for the Pharaohs, flip-flops will go on to seduce the Romans who, faithful to their reputation a bit as you saw, adapted them to their tastes. This is how the empresses found themselves wearing flip-flops whose soles were made of gold. What Italian simplicity!

6. The world record for flip flops is 39.56 meters.

Achieved during the World Flip-Flop Throwing Championships in 2015, this record is held by 2 Girondin teachers. Why two? Because it’s not enough to throw your flip-flop with your foot, your teammate must catch it before it hits the ground!

7. More than 18,000 bacteria are hidden in each pair of flip flops

Only after wearing them of course. New, there are fewer risks. A 2009 study by the University of Miami showed that flip-flops were full of bacteria, including the dangerous Staphylococcus aureus and other crap from fecal residue. If you think about it for 2 seconds, walking around with open shoes and a 3 centimeter sole is necessarily risky.

8. Walking regularly in flip flops is super bad for your health.

A podiatrist says so. Wearing flip flops too often can cause tendinitis of the toes, which are forced to grip like crazy to prevent you from breaking your hoe. Another study also reveals that walking with flip flops would force you to take shorter strides and cause back, knee and hip problems…

9. In France, driving in flip flops is not forbidden – but on one condition…

Don’t have an accident! In this case you could be fined according to article R412-6 of the Highway Code which requires that you do nothing that hinders your ability to control your vehicle, as was the case for a driver in 2015, who hit a vehicle of the Gendarmerie after his flip-flop got stuck on the accelerator pedal…

10. You can get paid to test flip flops

A summer job of course! The offer is a bit dated, but it offered to test flip flops for the Tribord company belonging to the Decathlon group. Only skill required: wear size 38!

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