Tuesday, March 15, 2005
They are ever with you
Clothes was the subject of my last post. But I left out a significant part of the general problem – shoes. On examination, my closet or bedroom floor has about 20 pairs of shoes stored ready to wear. The best of the lot are in shoeboxes on the shelves. The next best are on the shoe rack I installed on the back of my closet door. Today’s shoes, and sometimes yesterday’s as well, are lying on the floor.
The shoes are of the usual types for men. One pair of shiny patent leather shoes for black tie affairs, business wingtips I can’t wear anymore, tassel loafers in black and brown, several pairs of hiking boots, a good pair of Ecco sandals, and three pairs of white or off-white sports shoes, two pairs of Dockers, one pair of penny loafers, and a few others I haven’t looked at for a long time. They probably don’t fit anymore. Oh, I forgot the galoshes, and rubber slipovers for really bad weather.
All of this is rather well-housed in my closet, but if I buy another pair, I will have to throw away an old pair. This bothers me a lot. Old shoes are comfortable! New shoes rarely are to begin with. So I buy few new shoes; perhaps one pair in a year. Not so with the wife.
Early on, I was taught the necessity for women to match shoes with outfits. This is a mysterious process that begins with the wife perusing fashion magazines to see what those unnaturally slim and angry-looking models are wearing. And somehow it turns out that the shoes that matched her outfit yesterday don’t match today. Something is wrong with them, perhaps the heels are too narrow, or too wide, or they are too colorful or something! Of course, when she buys a new outfit, naturally new shoes must be bought at the same time, along with purses, scarves and other accessories to complete the ensemble.
Over some time, the shoes have become a real problem. No more space to store them where they are conveniently accessible to her. I seldom probe in the bottom of my closet, it being somewhat dangerous to go very far in, what with litter and sharply pointed things lurking there, but the other day I discovered ten boxes of shoes stacked neatly in the far back, and it was clear that there would be another row stacked on top of these very soon. My protests were of no avail. She needed the space, and what should she do, throw good shoes away? She said that I don’t throw them away until they mold, so why should she? And besides, I had the room, and it wasn’t being used, was it?
The barrage went on until I retreated to my study much chastened. How is it that women can come up with irrefutable arguments at the drop of a …shoe? And it is our house, and our spaces, and our closets, isn’t that so?
The last time I looked, there were ten more boxes on top of the ones already there; a stack now five boxes long and four boxes high. When I suggested that she put them in the bottom of the basement zippered bags, I was blasted away with the fact that I didn’t understand how you have to try on shoes each day because your feet swell, and shoes that fit yesterday don’t fit today, or even in the same day for that matter. So travelling to the basement multiple times was out, period!
Shoes! They will take over yet! That stack in my closet simply cannot get higher than six boxes, and at the rate things are going, that will happen in about May. What then?