Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Shoe addiction

The box from DSW arrived today with a printed warning that shoes are highly addictive. I didn’t mean to buy them. Really—I just bought them to be kind.

I took my car to be serviced last week. While I was waiting for the car I wandered into the adjacent shoe store. I was innocently killing time. But I remembered that a couple of weeks ago I received a postcard from DSW—Designer Shoe Warehouse—telling me how much they missed me. I felt guilty for not keeping in touch with them and they were so forgiving that they offered me $20 off a pair of shoes. (Note to self: The first step is to realize that you are powerless in the presence of shoes and discount coupons.)

I found a really comfy pair of ballet flats in a practical neutral color. But the store didn’t have them in my size. The coupon was expiring soon, screaming at me to be used, threatening the stability of the economy and world peace. So I went home and used my little coupon to order the shoes in the appropriate size from DSW’s website. The shoes arrived today and they are now in my closet getting acquainted with the others. For now there is peace in this little corner of the world.

What is the thing about women and the addictive nature of shoes? Do you know any men who are addicted to shoes? I sure don’t. My friend Mike says that once in his life he went into a store and bought three pairs of shoes at the same time. “I felt so ashamed,” he said. I should feel such shame.

Perhaps the thing with shoes is that, unlike other items of apparel, you can see them. Think about it. You can’t see the earrings you are wearing or that cute little blouse from Banana Republic unless you look in a mirror. But just look down and there are your feet. You can be sitting at the bus stop with nothing to do other than to look at your feet. On a good day, you can say, “Oooooh, cute shoes.” On a bad day, you might say, “Euwww, these shoes make my feet look big and they don’t match my outfit and now that I see them in natural light I realize that they are just the wrong shade of black.” Enough to ruin your day and send you running to DSW with a coupon, searching for just a little peace in your wretched little life.

(Note to self: Step number two is to realize there is a power greater than myself that can restore me to sanity.)

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