Thursday, June 25, 2015

Proper Footwear



"Always wear proper footwear."

My dad was full of weird gems.  Pearls of wisdom. Read Vonnegut.  Read anything.  Read everything.  Don't drink. Be able to drive a standard. Don't be an asshole.  Get good grades. Don't marry an asshole. Don't let your kids be assholes. Watch Jeopardy every day.  Read the National Geographic, cover to cover, every month.

But I feel like the most important lesson my father ever taught me was this- wear proper footwear.  Always.

It's not like I wear heels. I'm not Carrie, addicted to four hundred dollar shoes. But when I went on my honeymoon to London (thirteen years ago...) I wore a new pair of boots.  They weren't stilettos or anything, but they had a good solid two inch heel and they were NEW (aka NOT BROKEN IN) and they were cheap. I was miserable.  Cold and homesick and miserable with ACHING feet.

It basically ruined my honeymoon and left a bad taste (that has since been COMPLETELY erased) of London in my mouth. I wanted to be (sort of) cute, so I wore those stupid shoes instead of my trusty Merrell's.  Idiot.

I've never EVER made that mistake again.

My dad has been saying 'wear proper footwear' for as long as I can remember.  Literally.  Driving thru Sicily as a five year old? On the off chance that we'd get out to walk around, I'd better wear proper footwear.  Headed to the river in California for an afternoon as a ten year old? Better wear proper footwear for the hike.  Walking around the neighborhood in the hundred plus heat with hundred plus humidity, dressed all in black because I was too cool as a fifteen year old? Wear proper footwear.

I could go on and on.

What did he mean? Was he trying to teach me some valuable life lesson?

Probably not.  He probably truly wanted me to...wear proper footwear.  To protect my feet. So that I wouldn't bitch for days and days about how much my feet hurt.

But sometimes, when I'm feeling melodramatic and emotional, I like to think he was trying to prepare me for life.  Wear proper footwear.  Be prepared.  Be practical.  Plan ahead. Oh, that's another one of his faves: people don't plan to fail, people fail to plan.  Like when I failed to plan to wear proper footwear on my fucking honeymoon.

This was taken after we hiked up the tallest waterfall in Europe, fifth tallest in the entire world.  You can't see it, but I'm wearing a not-very-stylish pair of basically orthotics Clarks. They cost a fortune (for me) and they're ugly, but they're sturdy.  And my feet don't hurt at all.

So thanks Dad.


Linking up with Mama Kat's Pretty Much World Famous Writer's Workshop with prompt 3.







11 comments:

  1. Sounds like your dad was full of wisdom! I don't care what my feel look like I want to be comfortable when I walk! Stopping by from Mama Kat's!

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    1. Lol, I guess he really was. Wish I'd noticed that in high school ;)

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  2. When I started as a corporate trainer, my mom, who was a teacher her entire adult life, gave me the same advice. "They don't look at your shoes," she told me, meaning "wear something you can stand in for eight hours." How right she was.

    And, you're right: that's the way fathers impart the wisdom of their age, as aphorisms.

    Stopping by from Mama Kat's...

    John Holton
    The Sound of One Hand Typing
    The Sound of One Hand Typing FM

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    1. So glad I went into nursing, where we were all expected to wear ugly, comfortable shoes!

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  3. love the family photo! I love tennis shoes any day over heels!

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    1. Thanks!!! Would you believe someone thought that was a stock photo from one of those Awkward Family Pics websites?!?!

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  4. I think your dad was right. Having aching feet just makes everything worse.

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  5. Love it. And yes, I agree that the wisdom of proper footwear goes far beyond a fashion statement. Words to live by!

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    1. Far, far beyond fashion statements. High five emoji.

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  6. I opted to wear cheap flip flops on a 3 mile hike the other day. I hated myself. Still do. YOUR DAD WAS RIGHT!

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