Mint shoes spare Japanese the shame of smelly feet
TOKYO: Worried your feet smell? In Japan, where people take off their shoes inside homes and many bars and restaurants, a shoe maker has created an insole with a mint aroma that covers up the odour of socks and feet.
The insole is fitted inside the shoe, allowing the wearer to pump mint fumes with every step. It has been a hit with businesspeople, said Yukio Aoyama, president of its maker, Tokyo-based S.A.I. International. “Businessmen here tend to wear leather shoes and I think many are bothered by their foot odour,” he said.
Japanese-style restaurants, where customers leave their shoes in lockers by the door, say minty shoes could help business.
“Many female customers wearing boots seem to worry about their foot smell and refuse to take them off,” said Hisako Washio, 59, who runs a restaurant in central Tokyo. “So even when we have empty seats they don’t want to sit.”
A pair of insoles costs about 3,000 yen ($28), and the mint aroma lasts for about six months, Aoyama said. (source)
Remember – the shame of stinky feet can lead to Sepaku!
Limburger is a profoundly stinky cheese, as wisegeek.com describes–
Limburger cheese is a shockingly odorous cheese which originates in Belgium. Most individuals who have been in the vicinity of Limburger remember the smell, which has been likened to rotting feet or moldy boots. Some consumers are in fact utterly unable to get over the smell and experience of the flavor of the cheese, which is actually quite excellent. As the smell indicates, Limburger has a strong and aggressive flavor, which is very popular in many parts of Europe.
While Limburger is originally from Belgium, many German dairies manufacture the cheese as well, and Limburger is also made in some parts of the United States. The distinctive cheese goes well with strong bitter foods, like rye bread and onions, and many consumers greatly enjoy the taste of Limburger on a sandwich, in a salad, or in other culinary settings.
Limburger’s distinct odor is partly due to the fact that it is a washed rind cheese. During the curing process, Limburger is periodically washed with a mild brine solution, which prevents many bacteria and molds from settling in on the cheese. In the briny environment, enzymes thrive on the surface of the cheese, and they will begin to break down the proteins inside. Limburger is also fermented with Brevibacterium linens, the same bacteria responsible for body odor, and this contributes to the odor. [emphasis mine]
The sentence I’ve boldfaced goes a long way towards explaining why female malaria mosquitoes are attracted equally to limburger cheese and the smell of human feet. (read story)
And, now, limburger in pop-culture. Here’s a video of the B-52s “Dance this Mess Around,” way back in 1979, the chorus of which goes, “Why don’t you dance with me?/I’m not no limburger.”