by Inigo Bear (Private Eye)
It was a warm, yet slightly chilly, day in Moniaive. I stood at my window wondering what to wear. Suddenly there was a tap on my door. How it got there I will never know but enough chit-chat and on with the tale.
I opened the door to see a strange sight – a man wearing two right shoes and a bright yellow flat cap.
“Good morning strange looking man,” I said, “how are you and why can I help you?”
He opened his wallet and took out a card. I took it and read the inscription – ‘Hiram C. Bonkington, Traveller in Ladies Underwear’. I gave him back his card remarking that his dress preference was his business and his alone. “No, no,” he cried, “you misunderstand, I am an agent for a well known Ladies Underwear chain and I need your help.”
I invited him in to sit on my Louis XVIIII settee and tell me all about it.
“Well,” he said, “I spent last night in a hotel and this morning discovered to my horror that I had two right shoes at the bottom of my bed. I told the landlord but he only laughed.”
I stoked my chin and said” “H’mm that is very interesting, or then again maybe not.”
“What do you think?” he asked.
“What do I think?” I replied, “Well…..” It was then the doorbell went and I opened it to see a short man in a see-through souwester. “Can I help you?” I asked.
“Indeed you can,” he replied. “I spent last night in a hotel and to my horror I discovered two left shoes at the bottom of my bed this morning. I said to myself, well, if my name isn’t Rupert Trouserpress it looks like someone has stolen my right shoe!”
I smiled a smile and invited him in. I was about to solve the strange case of the shoes when I heard a knock on the door. I opened it and there was a short man dressed in a suit.
“Don’t tell me,” I said, “You spent the night in a local hotel and are having trouble with your shoes.”
He took a step back and looked at me with awe. “Goodness,” he said, “that is unbelievable. how do you do it?”
“It’s a gift,” I replied. “A gift given only to the seventh son, of a seventh son, on my mothers side of the family. But I must attend to another matter before I solve your problem.”
“Right,” I said to Hiram, “Give Rupert your spare right shoe, and there you go a perfect pair again!”
“Not really,” said Hiram, “now I have one brown and one black shoe.”
“Me too!” exclaimed Rupert.
This case was getting tricky, but being a pro I turned to the short man and said “show me your shoes.”
“Can’t,” he said. “That’s the problem I haven’t got any shoes, you see they vanished from the bottom of my bed last night.”
“I see,” I said, “and what colour were your shoes?”
“Red,” he said.
And that’s when I decided to join the army, serve in foreign climes and to tie my shoes together with their laces at night.