Had my first Mexican shoeshine today, possibly my first ever actually. It was extraordinarily thorough. Not just polish but all sorts of liquids, possibly even paint, and lengthy buffering in-between. There's something both regal and disconcerting sitting on what could pass as a throne and having this guy attend to your feet. But the hierarchical stigma has largely disappeared - in Mexico City at least. They are a fixture of street life here, with men, women, even children stopping to give their shoes some love for 20 pesos and banter thrown in for free. Mine shone like never before.Apparently Malcolm X and James Brown were shoeshiners in their youth.