My Akoha Backlog #4 – Lovely Loafers

“Lovely Loafers” was a simple mission that asked folk to “take a picture of [their] shoes,” and when you really think about it, it’s not that simple at all. Shoes are just as complicated as clothes, in that they are only as complicated as you let them be, and god damn do people make it a ridiculous issue. There are stories and memories associated with clothes, such as the times we had in them, the places we won’t go because of them, even the persona we seek to convey through them. Forget how you bundle up for the current weather or what matches with the socks, the emotional attachments we make with clothes can get insane.

I’ve done my duty through the years to do without too many clothes (or shoes, as the purpose of this posting is), and have done well for myself, save that those who saw me a few years ago will think I never wash because I’m wearing the clothes they last saw me in. But if it isn’t “broke” why in the hell should I go broke just to “fix” it? But really, my wardrobe is filled with junk clothes, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Anyone who seeks to give me clothes as a gift is getting a slap in the face, because I already have enough as it is. That it’s proper attire or fits me anymore since I’ve gained thirty pounds in another matter altogether.

…I believe I’ve gone off track again. No more delaying the inevitable, onto the shoes I currently own.

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These slip on “bad boys” were bought from the local Wal-Mart, because when I need something to walk around on my feet I don’t care if it’s cheap. Long as I can get to Point A to Point B comfortably (though these are a little sketchy), I’ll be fine. Funny…I used to think these kind of shoes were stupid as hell, and kept myself to shoestring shoes for the longest time. Then I noticed I stopped bothering to untie and retie the shoelaces, rather just slipping them back on and off. So why the heck not give into the shoes that I thought were junk before? Feel like goddamn treasures on my feet right now. Sure, can’t wear them for certain work purposes, but I’ll jump that bridge when I get there (implying I’m an unemployed ass, ha ha).

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One thing I’ve always been jealous about creative folk is they consider every and all spaces to be a place where they can work their art. There have been amazing works of design drawn upon shoes I’ve seen over the years, and this…this “LOSER” across the the side of my left shoe is the closest I’ve ever come to it. When you’re down in the dumps, sometimes the only thing that can come out of you is that which is bringing you down. Guess I won’t have to see this too long, given the shoes are giving out. They are Wal-Mart shoes, after all, so there may even be more time to spruce up the rest of the shoe. Doubtful, but possible. Onto the next pair of footwear…

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These are the steel toed boots I used for heavy duty work purposes in the past. There was the chance of using them again when a possible temporary employ asked for them, but they were likely the wrong type (needed pure leather, tongue as well). Never mind the fact I was shown the door before the interview even got anywhere, but as it goes. Boots have served me well, but the sole is nearly gone and the edges of the steel toed section will tear at my real toes if I step wrong. But they get the job done, so what do I care? What am I going to do, spend money that isn’t there on new ones? Like hell.

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These “bad boys” were bought during Winter 2014 because shoes are horrible for walking in the snow. These not only kept my feet dry, but gave me better footing along with ankle support so that I didn’t tear anything in the midst of a potential fall. The boots did a damn good job through the Spring as well, but now with the hotter weather it just makes sense to have something a little more that breathes. Now you may be thinking, “Jacob! Didn’t you say you got tired of lacing up your shoes? Aren’t boots all about lacing?” Glad that you asked! The “bad boys” have a zipper that goes done the side the boot, so all I need to do is slip myself in/out, and the zipper does the rest. Slight re-lacing now and then, but it otherwise works like a charm…save for a single problem…

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The zipper tab was made of plastic. It snapped within a few days of use. Bollocks! But because I’m “so smart” I managed to make a custom zipper tab with duct tape and a paperclip. This zipper tab falls apart over time due to the fact it’s duct tape and a paperclip, but again, it gets the job done. And that’s really all I care about in the long run. If there’s a better custom zipper tab that I could be using, meh, I’m fine with what I got. Had, because I’m not putting these back on till Winter rears its head. I’ll be ready this time, Winter! You hear!?

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My final pair of shoes are honestly my most useless. Saved for the intention of special occasions such as funerals and social functions, the top layer of the shoe fabric is slowly peeling away, and I don’t even fit in these to begin with. So why do I have them? Just so I don’t have to get another damn pair of shoes for when I go to those dreaded social functions. Did I mention I have wretched social anxiety? Mind you, I hardly go to any gathering these days, and if I do I just wear my regular shoes. I care not for conformity and it shows…terribly. Likely why I’m never invited back to such ventures…*sigh*

…You know what’s funny about my current selection of shoes? They aren’t the ones I want them to be. Yes, big surprise, I wish I had a different wardrobe like everyone else, blah blah blah. But it’s more to do with the selection of shoes that are available to me through what I can afford to buy: all these shoes look like ass. The only shoes I want in this world are colorful ones. I would kill for a colorful pair of shoes right now (bright blue, pink, green, etc.), just so they can match the colorful socks that I hope to buy from here on out. But try as I might to seek out these colors in my purchases, they just don’t exist for my feet or are too steep a price.

It’s the little things that matter to us, really. Just a little bit of color in my life is all I ask for, and such a thing isn’t available to the poor. Yet? I’d like to imagine in another few years colorful footwear will become a little more normal, especially for the poor. But hey, don’t know if I’ll be around to see them. Yes, it’s as morbid as it sounds. I’ve followed through on my tradition of killing a written piece in the closing. Boom goes the dynamite. Have a happy…


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