Monday, January 2, 2012

Kicks (A sort of love story)

(Pre-Script: This post should be read as the song "That Year," #39 on the playlist, plays in the background, preferably directly into your ears via earbuds. Go down to the playlist, click on that song, then come back and resume reading. I'll wait...)(...still waiting...)

I am standing in line at the coffee bar on my lunch break. The guy in front of me is wearing brand new sneakers. I know they are brand new because even from back here I can smell them. Even though my nose is 6 inches higher than usual due to my own (fantastic) shoes. He probably liked the shoes so much, he wanted wear them right out of the store. Or he got them for Christmas, and this is the first time they have been out of the box. They are florescent red Nike's with a dark blue swoosh. I turn my head to the side and try not to breathe too deeply. I normally enjoy new shoe smell, but these don't smell quite right. To determine why would require a bit more detective work than I feel like putting in right now; I only have an hour for lunch, and I'm hungry. All I know is that this guy was most definitely determined to be wearing these particular shoes.
When I was four years old, I had a favorite pair of shoes. They were brown lace ups. They were probably boy shoes. They had been worn before. I don't know by who. I found them in my closet one day, in the side of my closet that my parent's used for storing whatnots that didn't fit anywhere else in the house. As the only girl, I was the only kid with my own room, so one half of my closet was a catchall. You would think I would have found this annoying, but it fascinated me. After being tucked into bed at night, I would pilfer through that side of the closet in all of it's never ending glory, sure that no one would notice I was still awake with the light on as long as I kept the door shut. When I found the brown shoes during one of my pilferations, I can only explain what happened to me as pure stroke of treasure finding genius. Or maybe an angel left them there for me, his favorite young freckle faced charge. All I knew was that instantly, I loved how they looked on my four year old feet. I wanted to wear them every day. I only took them off at night when I had to take a bath or go to bed. But the problem with four year old feet is that they keep growing. Still, I wore those shoes until I could no longer squeeze my feet into them, and it was with much sorrow that I had to give them up.
I recently found a picture of my four year old self wearing the mysterious brown shoes. On the top half, I look like a typical girl child, in pigtails, a dress, and a smile. On the bottom half, I look ridiculous. Big brown feet sticking out all over. As this was a time before grunge had been discovered in Seattle and adapted by the brooding youth of California, My poor parents must have been embarrassed to take me places. I would have been, if I were my kid. But then again, I was a third child, and by that point, maybe they were just glad I had clothes on. Who can say. All I know for sure is that I think I remember the moment of this picture, or a moment identical to it. My little brother (I'm not little!" he would protest, and would eventually grow taller than me, as if to prove his own point.) and I are swinging on a bench swing. We are swinging and pretending that we are flying someplace high up in the air, above the trees, way up in the clouds, and I am completely blissed out in my childhood; I've got a swing, my imagination, and the world's greatest shoes on my very own feet; nothing could be better than this feeling in this moment right now.
Maybe this is why people trust me to style their wardrobes now; because I remember what the wearing feels like. The advice that I give every day: wear what makes you happy. I remember what it's like to feel what you are wearing to the core of your tippy little ever hopeful heart.


1 comment:

Johnny R said...

Great LOVE story! :) especially the ending, "wear what makes you happy" and that coming from a four year old in pigtails and her favorite brown shoes. This story should come with your fashion advise, that would convince all your clients to trust you :)