Sorry, we're not making that these-boots pun


Y'know, as fun as it is to give Alex Kuczynski a hard time, occasionally her shopping column in the Times provides some useful information.

"Real Texas cowboys started manufacturing something resembling the modern cowboy boot in the mid-19th century (after they tired of the Wellington boot, which had enjoyed a brief popularity after Wellington's defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo). But the cowboy boot's prime influence was most likely the Hessian boot, a boot that fit under the knee with a V cut in the front and was often decorated with a silk or fabric tassel. Kansas and Texas are still locked in battle over which state originated the first real cowboy boot, but no one knows the answer."

Okay, maybe "useful" is a stretch. But I'd love to know what Hessian soldiers would have made of the candy-colored monstrosities above.