Wednesday, August 3, 2011
When I was very young, my parents got brand new wall-to-wall carpeting in our house. Immediately, a rule was put into place: no shoes in the house. You put them on in the entryway when you left the house, and took them off there when you came in. Pretty simple.
However, coming and going from the house is something one does a whole lot. So, as a lifelong creature of habit, it became an ingrained thing for me. Very ingrained. Whenever I went into anyone’s house, I just assumed that shoes had to come off, even if I was not asked. Thank goodness my parents were not nudists, or I would have developed habits that would have prevented my ever being invited anywhere.
To this very day, I cannot relax in my home or anyone else’s while wearing shoes. It’s just one of my weird quirks. Around my house, I am either barefoot or in socks, depending on the time of year. If I am a guest at your house and my shoes are still on, rest assured that I am not fully comfortable yet. Either that or I am too drunk to undo my laces, but that would be rare.
In a cruel twist of fate, my feet have developed a tendency toward getting cold easily as I have reached middle age. Living in the frozen wasteland that I call home, my tootsies are chilly to some degree from September until May. No biggie, though. That’s why God invented socks, after all.
This leads me to the point of this tract. Yes, I do actually have one. Without fail, I can find something wet or horrible to step in whenever I am wandering around the house in socks. A few drops on the bathroom floor near the sink? Stepped directly in it. Some snow tracked in from outside? Right here! Small spill of coffee near the kitchen counter? Planted my foot right in it. Cat horked up a hairball? Found it! It’s uncanny.
I maintain that if you dropped me into the center of the Sahara Desert from a helicopter in my stocking feet at the height of summer, I’d be fine, because I would inevitably find something wet with my feet within a few steps.
What’s most amazing is that there really aren’t that many things on the floor in my house in which to actually step. I keep a pretty tidy place overall. If there is a mess, I clean it up immediately. Which makes it all the more irritating when one of the cats eats their dinner too quickly and yacks up a disgusting but innocuous little puddle of Friskies turkey-flavor that blends in perfectly with the color of the carpeting. The ratio of yack-occupied floor to otherwise clean and traversable floor is pretty steep, and yet, I always, always, always seem to step in the nastiness before I see it.
I suppose there must be a silver lining in this somewhere. Some kind of upside. Maybe I could rent myself out to drought-stricken lands to find water with my stocking feet. Make a few bucks. I’ll have to develop a business plan around that. Meanwhile, you’ll have to excuse me, I have a load of socks in the washer that need to be moved to the dryer.