Travelling in to London this morning on an unusually crowded Bakerloo train, my eye was drawn to a young man standing near me. (I don’t like the sound of this: Ed). He was wearing a drab blue-black jacket and similar jeans and dull brown-grey shoes. But what made me look was the vivid orange laces on the shoes the only splash of colour in his outfit. (Oh I see: Ed) Like a mourner wearing a bright red tie at the funeral, they demanded attention.
Maybe he is a supporter of the Dutch football team. Perhaps he works for a well known telecoms business or is a keen follower of an Irish Protestant sect. Or, like our mourner, there is a desire to make a statement of non-conformity, or to assert self-identity.
It doesn’t matter a jot, really. But when you are stuck in a mob waiting only for the train to arrive at Oxford Circus where most people will get out, this is the sort of subject on which you ponder.