It Rained Shoes on Palmetto Expressway (Florida)!

Twitter was abuzz today with this unusual story, and I first caught wind of it from @LenKendall and @attitudegrrrl. Thousands of shoes of all kinds appeared out of nowhere on the southbound lanes of Palmetto Expressway, disrupting traffic for hours.  No witnesses have come forward, and it remains a mystery how the shoes got on the busy highway at 7:42 a.m.  Seriously, no one saw this?!  I guarantee if I had been in the area, I would have seen it from a mile away.  Poor shoes!

Some say it could have just been a truck whose doors swung open, releasing its huge shipment on the concrete.  Others think it was a prank similar to one pulled by thieves who returned a statue stolen from the West Palm Beach home of Bernard Madoff.  Others still believe it to be a protest against President Bush, a reference to his recent shoe-dodging experience in Iraq.

But there is an upside to this story of shoe abuse: several nonprofits are benefiting from this shoe-a-lanche (as my friend @attitudegrrrl called it).  Many were invited to pick up as many shoes as they could carry from the stack that the Florida Highway Patrol was keeping in northern Miami-Dade.  Unclaimed shoes will go to Soles4Souls, a shoe-giving charitable organization with projects around the world.

This mess of shoes caused long traffic delays and a two-hour clean-up Friday morning.  Law enforcement officials said whoever dumped the shoes will be charged for the clean up, and it won’t be cheap.

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