As some may gather from reading my posts here and on my other blog, I am a long hair hippie type. Well except for the long hair. Or any hair for that matter. And the fact that I live in a suburban household. And I really don’t do drugs, or actively protest things and such. But I do go for the none-material lifestyle. Barefoot is definitely my preference for shoes.
However, sometimes it is necessary to actually gird the peds with some animal flesh (or in this day and age pseudo-animal flesh), despite aspirations to be a hobbit. Unfortunately, not actually having mastered the art of shoe making, this means on occasion it is necessary to … gasp …
… go shopping.
Now for me shopping ranks up there with Novocaine free dentist drilling. And it has been my experience that shopping for shoes is by far the worst possible kind of shopping. The rare occasion that I have managed to brave a shoe store out of sheer desperate need for shoes that don’t actually destroy my feet has not convinced me otherwise.
Today for instance.
Having a need for some new sneakers, my mother gave me a ride (I still don’t drive … thus the need for foot protection) and we went to one of the local Outlet Villages. That in itself is a scary prospect. An area devoted to discount stores that is literally bigger and has more buildings than some towns I have lived in. Fortunately a slow day so I did not also have to contend with an overwhelming mass of humanity as well.
In this day and age of too many choices, shoes … specifically sports shoes … are the epitome of WAY TOO MANY. What I look for in a sneaker: functionality, comfort, and support. I don’t object to paying a lot for a good sneaker. I do however object to paying a lot for the IMAGE of a good sneaker. Or for the privilege of being a walking advertisement. So after randomly picking one of the fourteen possible sports shoes outlets (as far as I can tell the only difference between any of them is how memorable their commercials are) we walked into a warehouse of a store. We wandered through the aisles of clothing in the “sneaker” store, and finally came to the millions of sneakers to be picked from. I might be exaggerating slightly, but as far as I was concerned, it might as well have been. Having no clue where to even look for what I might want, a kindly sales person directed me to the most likely aisle, and then proceeded to have no more useful information … such as what made this sneaker any different from that one except how it looked.
Eventually a more knowledgable salesperson noticed my deer in headlights stare and was able to direct me to a few sneakers that would suit my needs. I picked the one that most appealed, tried it on and found something that seemed ok. And it was even fairly cheap. Now is the part that makes me laugh (so I don’t scream). I figured I’d get a couple of pairs, and for variety I would go with different colors. No problem. The amusingly annoying thing was that one color cost twice as much as the other one did.
Silly me. Next time I will just buy a couple of cans of spray paint. Apparently it is what my feet look like that truly matters.