I was kicked out of a Country Kitchen Restaurant once because I had bare feet. I was three years old.

Yesterday I was reading something that brought back a memory for me; which led me to look up a few things about the history of not being able to go barefoot in restaurants.

You know the "NO SHIRT, NO SHOES, NO SERVICE" signs that you find posted on many stores and restaurants?

According to the website: Society for Barefoot Living it's not an OSHA mandated 'law' at all... even though you may have been led to think so.

Do OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) regulations (in the U.S.) require customers in businesses, including stores and restaurants, to wear some kind of footwear?

ANSWER: No! OSHA regulations apply only to employees, not customers. But even for employees, OSHA requires footwear only in special circumstances-and then it must specify the standards and criteria. In many cases, OSHA regulations do not require footwear for employees.

I've always been partial to going barefoot.  I don't have pretty little dainty feet that see a pedicure every week, because my feet need to be functional.  More than likely you'll find me outside in bare feet.  In the woods, down by the creek, walking down the concrete drive to get mail; all in bare feet.  I also don't think to put on shoes when I really should... like the time I had to go to Target at 8:00 at night for last minute school supplies for one of the kids projects, only to park and then find I had forgotten shoes.  And couldn't go in the store.

Or could I have?

In the end, it looks like it's a muddy water type topic; no clear black and white on whether or not you could go barefoot into the grocery store whenever you wanted and they couldn't tell you any different.

I just like learning something new... and to me, this little tiny tidbit of information was interesting.

About that memory that triggered this yesterday?

I was kicked out of a Country Kitchen Restaurant once because I had bare feet.

I was three years old.

My parents were visiting friends and my Dad took me (3 years old) and my brother (1 year old) to eat at Country Kitchen while my Mom and her friend stayed at the house and talked 'girl talk' for a few hours.  My Dad carried us both in, we sat in a booth.  The waitress approached to take our order, but when she spied my itty bitty 3 year old toddler feet that were sans shoes, she informed my Dad he had to leave the restaurant.


He tried to reason with her but apparently the manager backed her up.  No bare feet.  Even if those feet were like, only 4 inches long and never touched the floor because they were carried by her Daddy!

I think our world today is quite insane, but apparently even back in the early 1970's people were stupid.  But then again, from the history I was reading online through the Google gods, it seems that the big push for "No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service" might have been started in earnest in the early 70's because of the 'long haired hippies' of that time. 

I don't know... but I DO know I still remember feeling ashamed and embarrassed and confused as my Dad argued with the waitress (yes, I remember this...) and carried me back out to our truck and drove away. 

All because of my little toddler bare feet.