Wednesday, January 21, 2015
the secret lives of shoes
Shoes tell stories about people, accompanying the wearer on adventures, then sitting idly by under a bed or in a closet. As a boy, I wore athletic shoes, because I went about as a boy. When I grew into young adulthood, I wore biker boots-something solid, substantial, seeming to help hold me to the earth. I needed the stability. Maybe I needed something to toughen my image, too(just between you and me). And on my favorite style, there was a leather-held shackle. That said something about the young man with the easy smile, crazy eyes, equally insane laugh, nebulous personality, that bundle of raw nerves. That or I enjoyed getting tied-up. Delicious pain, delicious waiting, one-way ticket Mister Grey. The roaches check in but they don't check out. No. As a young working man, I wore cheap work boots, mid-top and as an automotive technician I upgraded to steel toes, still mid-top, relatively lightweight, for ease of movement. I frequently wore the tread off of them, making the non-slip, carbunkled surface smooth. Now, as a man approaching middle age, I wear five dollar sneakers. What happened to me? Do I not care anymore? Do I sympathize with the Chinese workers that made my shoes? When I wear my permapress pants and cheap shoes, am I being some kind of communist? Or cloaking myself as some kind of bargain-bin everyman. Maybe I'm no longer here to impress anyone. *And I'm not above begging that Sharpton and company don't ruin the oscars. Did you catch my tone there? Please, don't, I said.