Monday, July 24, 2006

used but not used up

She's threatening to throw out or burn my shoes. I have this old pair of sneakers that she wants to get rid of just because they are worn-out looking, scuffed and scratched, scarred and marred by the years of dedicated service they have supplied to me.

Aesthetics aside, they pliantly mold themselves to my feet like a second skin, and are oh so comfortable. I feel a certain sense of loyalty to them for the uncomplaining years of abuse to which I have subjected them. They have survived getting green stained from grass cuttings. They have tolerated muddy soles and soggy toes from my getting to close to the water on the lake shore. They wear the grease stain on the heel from my bike chain as a badge of honor. They have absorbed the juices from sweat soaked socks and bare feet as sustenance to keep them going, going, going strongly in service to my comfort.

Once pristine white when they emerged form their box, now they are faded and sad looking, their laces gray and somewhat frayed. Despite the sorry condition they are now in, I could no more toss them out than eat them. Why can't she see that?

Mary's need for order and cleanliness is the culprit. If it's dirty or dented, frayed, faded, or past its prime (and especially if it's mine), the witch with the disposal itch will hunt it down and banish it to the garbage heap. We have had many discussions (ok, arguments),about my inability to part with anything. I mean, I have wood scraps in my workshop, older than my first born child, that I refuse to give up. I may still have a pair of frayed bellbottoms from the 60's hidden in some secret cache she knows nothing about, that if found, would be immediately and mercilessly destroyed with unseemly delight, my protestations of sentimental value notwithstanding.

But just because someting is old and getting older, well-used, nearing or just beyond its expiration date, or past its youthful handsomeness, graying and a bit scarred from years of heavy duty, doesn't mean it should be so unceremoniously dicarded. Luckily her penchant for the ruthless culling of old and used and fading things applies, so far, to inanimate objects, because I think I just described myself.

I guess as long as I keep moving I'l be ok.

No comments: