(marc's wearing his trusty wellies)
Wellington Boots, or "Wellies", are pretty much universal over here - everyone owns a pair. Men have to have boring black or green ones, but women get to choose from every design under the sun! Mine have bright fall leaves on them. So what is the tradition that makes these boots so popular (and why oh why aren't they popular in the states)? I have to say, we are both completely converted, and when it is wet or muddy outside, it's wellies all the way!
In the 18th century the first Duke of Wellington has his big old wartime boots altered to make them more comfortable for evening wear. The Duke was so cool that everyone started imitating him and the "Wellington" was born.
Here's the best part: Yorkshire soon invented a sport called "Wellie Wanging" - competitors hurl wellies as far as they possibly can. That's it. Sometimes you get a running start, and sometimes you have to hurl the boot off your own foot as if you were kicking it off. We're hoping this becomes an official Olympic sport because we are getting good!