On the importance of sensible footware
and the enduring power of love
Jay called the ride.
Tomorrow. King Street. Dirt jumps.
I needed to swing by the shop to get something to ride. I had a bike there, a project waiting to be finished. It would have to do. Run what you brung, as they say.
A hurried morning escaping didn’t account for my intended after work antics. I was wearing my clogs. Birkenstock clogs and red wool socks. Full on sox in sandals weirdo magic.
The time was short. The clogs were there and did not have laces - ideal footwear for a hasty exit.
You’re riding in those? We’re riding dirt jumps. What kind of idiot are you?
I was an idiot in unsensible footwear.
And did I mention that I forgot my helmet too?
There’s that as well.
We rode up to the vacant lot, home to Jay’s “Creation of Adam”. I did a lap. It was not the best of plans. My feet were moving all over the place and the pedals were chewing up my soles. Worst yet, I may have caught the straps on the crank arms.
That was bad.
But worse still? I had the wrong bike. On this one, the seat post didn’t drop far enough away. My dangly bits had fully retreated, more battered than a battalion of Russian convicts.
I was wearing the wrong footwear.
Needing better shoes and a better bike I pedaled home. The problematic shoes, though not good enough for a dirt jump session, were find for the ride home. Once there, I picked up a helmet too and went back to the park for an evening of antics.
The next morning I awoke to find that my cherished clogs had popped their rivets.
I trashed my favorite shoes riding my bike in a dirty little park.
Luckily this seemed like a quick fix: Go to the cobblers shop, drop them off and get them back next week. I like things that get repaired. I like things that last.
I took the shoes to the cobblers. There I was greeted with papered over windows. They were not out of business. They had too much business. There was a note explaining that in this city of half a million people, there are only two functioning cobbler shops. They were not taking new work until mid October.
I couldn’t bear the thought of being separated from my unsensible clogs for that long. I needed to act. I felt this all the way down to my soul. But now I was frustrated. Sure I made a bad shoe choice, but it shouldn’t be taking me this long to rectify the matter.
Not only did I waste almost an hour walking downtown and back, but I also was sent spiraling down a rabbit hole of exploring what would be required in starting a cobbler business. That took a few hours of mental energy and attention.
And all of this was because of an unsensible footwear choice.
The cobbler was about convenience. The shoes would be an easy fix. One rivet had popped from each. A single, simple rivet. Though I didn’t have a rivet press, I’m certain that I’d be able to fix these damn shoes. All I needed was the rivets.
How hard could it be to procure rivets for a pair of Birkenstock clogs?
I’ll tell you. Very hard. The Birkenstock parts people don’t ship to Canada. Other places have rivets. I could purchase them in quantities such that my next building project wouldn’t use screws. I scoured websites for the right rivets.
Funky star shaped ones, punk rock studs and twelve gauge shotgun shell style rivets were all available. Purchasing them this way would have been costly. I’m a fool, that’s for sure. I’m not a fool willing to pay twenty dollars per rivet to fix my shoes. Those are likely the world’s most expensive rivets.1 Perhaps they should be in 'The Fastener Hall of Fame'.2
By now, I’m at least ten hours in. All because of unsensible footwear.
Here’s the thing though. I love those clogs. I love my unsensible footwear. I love how they feel. I love how they just slip on like they were meant to be there. They are not the perfect shoe. They’re terrible on a bike. But despite that, I want them around.
This wasn’t wasted time. This was a time of sacrifice for love. I love my unsensible footwear. They suit me. I suit them. Together, we’ve been places, seen thing, done thing. Hell, they might not be sensible, but somehow we’re managing to raise a family together.
Sometimes we choose unsensible footwear. Sometimes this can be distracting or limiting.
When it comes to love and what works with our souls, sensibility has nothing to do with anything at all.
And the time spent running around looking for rivets and taking care of our love?
That’s likely the best way to spend the time we’re given.
Who am I to say what’s good or bad anyway? I’m the kind of idiot who wears clogs to go dirt jumping.
That was the price once shipping was included.
This does not exist but thank you for humouring me.