Firehouse red, they are. Or, as known to others, ”fuck-me” red. They’re shiny, too, but too cute to be called slutty. Having modest heels (my podiatrist would actually approve) and dainty red bows on the tops, I’d call them flirty. They’re downright irresistible, and in excellent condition.
I bought them for $10 at a hospice thrift shop.
A hospice thrift shop? you ask, thinking, My God. Not only does she buy used shoes, but dead people’s used shoes.
Well, I’m not ashamed of either. Okay, maybe a little about them being used. But the dead part, not one bit.
Look. It’s not like I waited by the woman’s deathbed and wrenched them off her feet as she took her last breath. Or that she fought for them, leaving claw-marks down the sides. And I don’t read the obituaries every day, hoping a woman with a closet full of Ann Kleins, Jimmy Choos or Guccis – and was a confirmed size 7 – has dropped dead.
If that was the case, I’d be prying opal rings off of bony fingers and diamond earrings off of dry, shriveled ears.
I would never go that far.
I don’t think.
Say what you will. In the final analysis, I think this is what matters: If the dead woman had known me, she’d have wanted me to have them.
I know this as surely as I do that macaroni and cheese and Nutella won’t bring back my waistline.
I am the woman who, in better economic times, passed an obscene number of hours in shoe sections of every major department store (and Marshall’s Super-Shoe Outlets) from here to Idaho. (I live in New Jersey.) Who matched her clothing to her shoes, rather than the other way around. Whose computer screen-saver is a close-up of her cherished blue butterfly mules (purchased online four minutes after she learned she owed $1,300 in taxes).
I am also the woman who has developed Achille’s tendonitis, and is warned by her podiatrist not to wear high heels or flats.
This effectively retires 98.3% of my adorable shoe collection. It’s a barbed swizzle stick through my heart, causing anguish on par with that of my parking trials.
You know what I think?
I think if the dead woman had known me, she’d have left me all of her shoes, and a couple of scarves for good measure.Insomnia: An Email To My Guy Friend |