jayellebee's Blog

November 11, 2011


Filed under: Musings — Joanne @ 11:42 pm

     Last Saturday, my family attended the wedding of Noah and Christina — a joyous affair spiced with details reflecting the style and interests of the new Mr. and Mrs.  An example?  The newlyweds took off early Sunday morning to honeymoon in Hawaii, so when their bridal party entered the church, it was to the accompaniment of a ukulele solo.  Quirky, but appropriate and memorable.

     What to wear to such a special occasion used to be a worry.  Not anymore.  Now I figure, if I don’t remember whether I’ve already worn an outfit around a certain group of people, they’re not going to remember either.  So these days I think more about what shoes I can wear with relative comfort, than overall  appearance.  Within reason, of course.    

     I mean, I’m not going to wear flip-flops to a wedding.  Right?  Especially not when my big toe and “pointer toe” are so inseparable they blister with the first rub when anything comes between them. 

     Bottom line, if the feet ain’t happy, Mama ain’t happy.

     My father had what I lovingly refer to as “The Larson Foot.”  Short.  Wide.  High arch.  Toes of equal length.  Turns out this flawed foot was the result of a dominant gene.  I have it.  My brother has it.  His son has it.  One-and-a-half of my sons have it.  (The youngest inherited his father’s length but got all the other Larson features.)  And we have all suffered for it.  Basically, shoe boxes fit The Larson Foot better than shoes do.

     My body would be perfect if it were not for The Larson Foot.  (Okay, that’s a lie.  But all of my other physical failings combined have not caused even one-tenth the misery my feet have.)  I am convinced Birkenstocks were designed with The Larson Foot in mind.  All other footwear is either incredibly expensive,  impossible to fit, or painful.

     Ski boots?  Imagine trying to shoosh when you’re numb from the ankle down.  Today’s pointy-toed shoes intended to accentuate the feminine foundation?  Not so alluring when bulging with squished toes the color of grape jelly.  Anything casual with an elastic or velcro fastener?  Those straps burst open like Otis Reddenbacher’s prized kernels in hot oil.

     Years ago, Ken and I rented a condo at Lake Tahoe with another couple.  As we gathered our belongings, preparing to vacate the premises, my very dear friend spotted my shabby shoes hiding in a corner.  She held them up, laughing. 

     “Can you believe how hideous these are?” she asked.  “I can’t believe the woman who owns this place would wear anything so disgusting.”

     Well, those might not have been the exact words spoken, but it is the echo that has reverberated in my head ever since.  My friend was right.  When I find shoes that actually fit, I wear them until they look less presentable than road kill and smell almost as good. 

     So, as I stood in my closet, wondering what to wear to the wedding, I surveyed the shelved collection of shoes.  November and a forecast of rain ruled out sandals.  Tempting as it was, slippers, athletic shoes (we used to call them tennies), and knee-high Sorrels with warm fleece lining couldn’t be seriously considered either.  Loafers seemed a bit too casual, even to me.  Sigh.  That left the sparse assortment of heels.

     I chose an old, black suede pair with sensible heels.  (Who am I kidding?  My newest pair of “dress shoes” has seen more Christmases than every child currently attending first grade.)  Trying the demons on, I rated their comfort level:  preferable to rusty bear traps and blazing hot beach sand, but nowhere near as nice as being bare foot.  I reasoned I could hide my almost-comfortable dinosaurs under the pew during the wedding and hoped for a long tablecloth at the reception.  At least I would be able to walk wince-less from our car to the various venues.  And, if in the dark after the festivities I stepped in a deep puddle?   Who cared? 

     My view of aligned bridesmaids processing into the church was obscured.  I caught a glimpse of their coifs just inside the door, then nothing more until they passed my row.  Pair after pair of glittering, bedazzled stilettos reflected the light, drawing my gaze to the carpeted center aisle like metal filings to a magnet.  

     Later, at the reception, I complimented one young woman on her exquisite footwear.

     “Thanks,” she said.  Then, leaning in closer, she added, “My feet are killing me!”



  1. Ah what we will do for beauty.

    Comment by Deidra Alexander — November 12, 2011 @ 2:55 am | Reply

  2. Loved this piece! Perhaps because I feel your pain . . . which is why I often wear my fuzzy sock/slippers to writer club luncheons. Liz

    Comment by Elizabeth Koehler-Pentacoff — November 12, 2011 @ 8:49 am | Reply

  3. Super writing! I was right there with you. My feet are an issue for me too, plantar fasciitis being the bane of my existence, though it is in remission at present. Hallelujah!! Knock wood!

    Missed you at CWC today. Hope you come down the hill again soon. I’d love to do lunch if you have the time.


    Comment by Bee Hylinski - Author and Baseball Fan — November 12, 2011 @ 3:50 pm | Reply

  4. Fun, Joanne.

    Comment by Jean G — January 6, 2012 @ 3:57 am | Reply

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