Monday, October 27, 2008

If the Shoe Fits

My wife creates exquisite paper shoes.
I have a pair of shoes I wear for outdoor work. Like a beat-up truck or an old hound dog, they’ve been around a while. I refer to them as durable and faithful. My wife calls them a disgrace.

In their defense, these never-say-die troopers are probably 10 years old. They began as spiffy new Rockport office shoes. After a couple of years, they retired into casual wear. Finally, in their twilight years, when most shoes would have laced their last, they rose to the occasion and became the Work Shoes.

They’ve been stepped on and scratched and crushed and bent all out of shape helping me move our home six or seven times. They protected my feet while I scraped 50-year-old petrified carpet pad from the floors of our first house. And they’ve kept the grime and the thorns and the bugs from tormenting my toes while I pulled weeds and dug holes and planted flowers a thousand different times. They’ve helped me stomp through rivers and shovel mountains of nitrolized sawdust around my property. At the end of a long hard work day, they’ve endured countless poundings to dislodge the dirt clods, and umpteen hosings off to remove what was left. They’ve spent endless hot hours drying in the sun, and many a long lonely night out in the cold. But like the Every Ready battery, they keep going and going . . . and they’re always there for me. Much to my wife’s chagrin.

So I say that, like the velveteen rabbit, they’ve transformed from a simple pair of shoes into beloved companions, worthy of honor and respect.

My wife says that, like Old Yeller, they’ve gone bad and need to be put out of their misery. Or at least hers.

Outrageous, I say. Just as the exquisite appearance of her paper shoes reflect the pinnacle of high class and artistic elegance, so the Work Shoes reflect the classic attributes of dedication, hard work and self sacrifice.

Besides, after 13 straight hours, I bet they’re a lot more comfortable than heels.


  1. ...hee hee...I can so relate to your post but not because my husband has shoes like that but because I do!!!
    I have my favorite pair of sneakers that are soooo comfy that when im going camping or hiking or working in the yard (which by the way doesnt happen often)
    I have to wear them!
    My hubbie threatens to throw them in the garbage but I cant let them go.They are broken in to the perfect degree and I suppose as long as I insist on wearing them I wont have the oppurtunity to break in any others so for now they are staying!

  2. I love this!! I think it's quite wonderful that they have walked through so many memories. I am a bit nostalgic, so I love this. I also love the images of Nancy's gorgeous paper shoes in contrast to these well-worn solid work shoes. You two must make a terrific pair!!!


  3. just found you via French Garden House - quite enjoyable, well written musings. Off to visit the wife's site as a fellow creative . . .her shoes delight!

  4. As always great stories... I love the shoes... they have such character and to me are an extension of yours... you are casual yet have class... warm... comfortable... great attributes I must say

    Your shoes tell a story of past present and perhaps if you get to keep them future...

    I hope they get to stay around longer.... would love to hear of the many adventures to come




  5. Hi, Terri,
    Thanks for the visit and the kind comments. I hope you enjoyed my wife's blog too (I'm sure you did!). We'll both look forward to seeing yours soon!

  6. Hi Bill... I just wanted to say that the compliment you left on my blog made my heart skip a beat... coming from a story teller like you I cant tell you how much it meant

    PS Love the new look of your blog



  7. Pass this note to Nancy,

    "Let him keep the shoes, they are his brand of elegance. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."

    Great post!

  8. Oh Bill
    They look great!!
    and they have served your travels
    but ALAS
    your dear wife's shoes
    are more to the heart fluttering
    delight I seek..
    smiles, Deena


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