I interrupt this streamiest of the stream of conscious blogs for a commentary on. . . shoes.
I get to find out the true die hards out of my readership tonight. We’re going to delve into my relationship with shoes. I will do it by telling embarrassing stories about myself that are exclusively shoe-related.
When I was a young boy, Velcro had just been introduced to the breathless public. It was the decade of parachute pants, leggings, and Velcro. How anyone looks back at that decade with nostalgia is beyond me. Velcro shoes came at a perfect time for me, because it meant I didn’t have to learn to tie my shoes until I was older. We’re talking double digits older.
In high school I wore tennis shoes, and this was when they actually were called tennis shoes. I did not wear any kind of boots unless there was snow on the ground or dress shoes unless it was a prom (rented, doesn’t count) or some other kind of dance. I was a guy.
In college I finally broke down and got one pair of boots. I wore these as my “going out” shoes so much over a three-year period that the leather, or whatever imitation leather it was, had worn almost completely off the heel. It was time for young Zach Law to buy a new pair.
Zach Law bought another pair of boots. They were forest green. They were, as the kids said five years ago, fugly. I didn’t care if the boots didn’t match the rest of my ensemble. I wore ’em down just like the last pair. The day before my family went on a European vacation, the word was to pack light, like one backpack full for the entire week. I complied, bringing only my green boots. The rest of the family, of course, brought extra baggage and by the end of the trip my boots had walked halfway across France and I smelled like a Parisian.
On the first date with my now-wife, I wore a pair of trendy John Fluevogs. I ordered them online, and they were too big, and my late 20s self didn’t want to be inconvenienced by sending them back, so I just wore extra socks. This story follows me to today.
I either embarrassed or enhanced my manliness by purchasing not one, not two, but three pairs of work/casual shoes yesterday. There was not a tennis shoe to be found. Not only that, I got complements from the wife. I now own more shoes than I have sports jerseys, if you count each shoe individually.
The true “man” question is this: If I know things about fashion, does that leave less room in my brain for sports knowledge? Will I forget key items like the name of the backup QB for Central Michigan’s football team? Damn, I forgot it!