My father taught me something very important at the tender age of four: He said, “Son, never take your shoes off in the middle of the stairs because your mother might trip on them, fall and break her leg, thus rendering her incapable of making you macaroni and cheese for about five weeks.” I never forgot that sage advice, but, my wife, on the other hand, apparently, never had that same talk with her dad.
Michele will think nothing of coming home, kicking off her shoes wherever and whenever the mood strikes. They become little landmines, popping up when you least expect them.
Why would anyone stop half way? Wouldn’t you either remove your shoes at the door or wait until you’ve reached your final destination; like maybe the shoe rack?
The other night after coming back from an exciting outing to the mailbox, she must have decided that the bottom of the stairs was a good place to kick ’em off and leave them. Well, I found them, but not before I twisted my ankle, spilled a cup of tea and fell on a very angry cat, who, unfortunately absorbed most of my weight when I fell.
Okay, damnit! That’s it! I’m fed up! Dazed and confused, I struggled to pull myself off the canvas like a true champion and, somehow mustered the strength to crawl across the room and do the only logical thing: I threw those damn Pro Keds right in the fireplace! Yeah, I know what you’re thinking: “Hey, Bob, why the fireplace and not the attic?” Because, smarty pants, the attic is where the bats live and we’re not on speaking terms.
The following day, with my leg now the size of a century old Oak tree, I feared that Gangrene might be setting in. I wasn’t really sure what Gangrene looked like, but I was pretty sure that shades of purple, green, yellow and maroon had to be in the color scheme somewhere. As I laid near death on the living room floor, clutching the only thing that had never let me down, my Harry Carey bobble head doll, I wondered if just tossing the shoes in the fireplace was a strong enough message. I flashed back to the time I discovered my old girlfriend, Annie, was cheating on me. It was a masterful plan and took me a couple of days, but I filled the bottom of all of her curtains with used kitty litter and sewed them shut. Then, I cranked the heat in her apartment and just waited for the call. Oh yeah, that was mean…and fun! If memory serves correctly, she couldn’t figure out where that wonderful aroma was coming from and ended up having to move. I understand that to this day, anytime a Fancy Feast commercial comes on TV, she throws up. Although it was a great memory for me, I decided that tripping over a pair of errant shoes didn’t necessitate that level of drastic action, even though I was convinced I only had moments to live. All the felines gathered around, as if to say, “You’ve been a great dad, but before you expire, would you mind filling the food dish?”
Three days later, Michele noticed that I was still laying on the floor and inquired as to when I might be planning on getting up. Miraculously, I was able to move a bit as the swelling had started to subside and the rainbow colors of the presumed blood clots were beginning to fade. The bobble head doll and the felines pulled me through after all! Again, mustering all the strength I could, I managed to pull myself to the nearest chair, took a deep breath and a sniff and realized that a shower was desperately in order.
(One week later)
Michele finally got around to asking if I had seen her shoes. “Um, what shoes would those be?”, I asked. She said she remembered wearing them to get the mail but hasn’t seen them since. I told her not to worry and that I was positive that they would show up, however briefly, on the first cold night of the year.