Mine are black

Today I want to talk about boots. Boots are one of those things that most people don’t think about very often. You pull them on, you pull them off. It starts snowing and you grab for them to keep your feet warm. Unless you’re a shoe fiend who lusts for a new pair of thigh-highs or lace-ups, you may not think about boots very often at all. 

I am not a shoe fiend. I can’t afford to be, but more to the point, my feet do not cooperate with most footwear. I have wide flat feet and muscular calves. I have trouble finding regular shoes, and snow boots are hard to come by. Luckily, in Seattle, I no longer need them.

This weekend I went out to buy cowboy boots for all the country dancing I’ve been doing. I needed their ankle support, their slippery bottoms, and their solid heels. A girl wants to make a proper stomp while she’s line dancing, and it’s much easier to glide and spin in the proper soles.

I turned myself over to the capable guidance of Renton Western Wear. I explained what I wanted the boots for, and what some of the issues might be with the fit. Then I started to try on boots. It was such a surprise! You know those loops on the sides of cowboy boots? I found out what those are for. Those are to put the hooks into. Hooks, you ask? Yes, hooks. You take a handled hook into each hand, slip it through the boot loops and yank your boot on. Want the boots off? There’s equipment for that, too. You place one foot on an angled board and hook your heel into an indent. Voila—you are ready to yank your boot off.

I ended up buying a much simpler pair. They come up to mid-calf and lace all the way there. No tools are required, and they’ve got a lovely heel and suitably slippery bottom. I’ll dance a lot of miles in these shoes, but more than that, I’ll always have the memory of buying them. I’ll never look at those little boot loops the same way again. I am now a person who notices boots. All this in one morning—it was a very productive trip.

Your assignment, should you choose to accept it:

78. Find out about something you’ve never encountered. Ask a friend about an unusual hobby or visit a factory to see how something is made. Does it change your perspective on things?

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