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3.06.2012

ALL THINGS BRIGHT AND GAUDY

I need new running shoes.  Need is possibly a relative word in this case.  They probably have some miles to be logged left on them, but I am rounding up.  Reason being, I hate the color of my shoes. HATE is not as full and descriptive of a word that I could find.  Neutral colors rule supreme for me - in clothes and style.  Your basic gray, blueish, white with maybe a strip of a color on the shoe or sole is what most appeals to me.  Naturally you would think that comfort trumps all.  It does to some degree.  I went waaayyyy outside of myself in buying these shoes because, based on what the store had to offer, they were the right feel and height to my ankle bone, the right weight and offered a mesh toe (I don't wear socks when I run and like the air movement).  The lesson I learned though, is that although all that stuff is what really matters in regards to a shoe when logging miles in running, I am vain.  Since being single again and then re-married, I have consciously edged into waters that were not part of my life previously.  The results have been liberating and freeing - opening myself up to things I didn't think were me or I would like.  These shoes, black with shocking hot pink highlights, are NOT in that category.  I have found myself staring at my feet when out running and having a dialogue about them in my head.  Usually the dialogue concludes with the same thing daily, "I HATE THESE SHOES!"  Today I went to a sporting goods store in search of a non-ghetto pair of running shoes.  The salesclerk, a man who was also a runner, came to help me with my questions.  I like a very lightweight shoe 8-9 ounces.  I asked him about the lightweight, almost barefoot runner shoes out now.  We discussed issues that they can create; Achilles and arch trouble due to the fact that the shoes are designed for shorter, faster runs that are run more on your toes than a heel to toe strike.  I scoured the displays disregarding price momentarily and focusing first on weight and color.  In exasperation I turned to the man helping me and said, "Seriously are there not any shoes this season that aren't bright and gaudy?  Look at the way I am dressed today - black shirt, black coat, pair of jeans and black Born shoes.  Do you think I want bright ostentatious shoes??"  He laughed and sarcastically spit back, "Yeah, no doubt they are exactly what fits your style."  I asked his theory on why running shoes have gotten so damn bright and flashy.  "The style this season.  Safety in running in the road - easier to be seen!"  There is NO shoe on the face of the earth that is going to protect you from being hit by a car while running.  The smidgen of truth in his statement was still not enough to warrant wearing neon signs on my feet.  I would just have to risk life and limb when I slipped on my gray non-ghetto shoes then.  My black and hot pink ASIC shoes would not be out of the closet again if I could help it.  Skinny jeans, billowy tops and ghetto running shoes - these are a few of my not favorite things! 

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