Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Just the Facts, Ma'am

Hey CSI, love the show, but I have a nit to pick.

Last night you showed a shoe imprint of what your detectives deduced as a skateboarder's pair of shoes. Kim Delaney's character pointed out that the left shoe was more worn than the right shoe, from pushing off the ground all the time; the right shoe is up on the skateboard, not the ground. From that assumption she then extrapolated that the skater was goofy, meaning he skates right foot forward (on the board), while the left foot pushes (the opposite is known as regular for you squares). Points on knowing what "goofy" means.

Only she (and your writers) got it wrong. Any skater will tell you that the shoe that's on the board all the time wears out much faster than the foot that pushes. After all, it's standing on sandpaper. If you had to grind a shoe down flat, what would you use? Pavement, or sandpaper? Every time you stop pushing to coast, you shift your front foot sideways on the sandpaper griptape (and simply place your rear foot on the sandpaper), which pretty much sands down the shoe rubber of the front foot. It happens more than you'd think, and after a few years of skating, I had an entire closet full of worn out right Chuck Taylors and brand-new left ones.

So basically, based on the wear patterns you showed in your shoe imprints, the detectives should have been looking for a regular footed skater, not goofy.

I just found it odd that you cared enough to find out what we call right-footed skaters, but didn't care enough to get the facts straight on shoe-wear, which was the job of a Criminal Science Investigation.

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