Monday, July 18, 2016

A Slice of Giving Away

        I'm slicing with the Two Writing Teachers community today. It's always a pleasure to read what everyone writes about their lives.

Tired of the tension, trying to be more light-hearted in this post.

          I've used shoes quite a bit in my teaching. We've written poems about them, studied other poets' poems, and sketched them. There seems to be one scene in nearly every book about shoes. These past few days I've been trying to choose more clothes to give away. Shoes are the hardest. 
           Like others I know, I don't particularly like shoes. I'd rather spend more money on books. So, when I know that I have a pair of shoes that will "fit" an occasion and not be too out of date, I hesitate to get rid of them.    


           And then there are my Converse low tops, soft as worn cloth, with a few holes, favorites. At first I thought I might as well keep them because they are rather worn, and I wondered who would want them?  Well, there are many 'gently worn' collectibles online. I had no idea. I guess now I have a big decision-keep or give? I like them, have fond memories of wearing them with my students who thought they were 'cool'. But, I wear them rarely, and someone out there might be thrilled to have them. Nostalgia hurts the giveaways.  

Here's the beginning of a poem I wrote earlier this year:

With Apologies to Robert Frost
     
Whose shoes these are I think I know;
his house is down two streets or so.
He’s wearing new Chuck Taylors now.
In youth, all feet are wont to grow.

  FYI-I still have my wedding shoes, in a box, but that's excusable, right? No one would want them! 

    

40 comments:

  1. I admit to loving some old shoes too much also!
    I enjoyed your reflection about shoes, and the turn it took, into imagining who could make use of them after you, and who needs them more. Love the poem.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Fran, shoes seem important to many, and it was fun to right, and research!

      Delete
  2. Linda, Thank you for the lightness in a time of struggle! And shoes...I LOVE it! Today I'll be outside writing all day long, at a writing marathon. Now I think I'll be paying special attention to shoes. Hmmm...I wonder what I'll find.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope the writing day goes well, Michelle. It seemed time to turn to the mundane parts of my life for a change. Thanks!

      Delete
  3. I know that shoes will be on my mind as I wander through my world today. Who's wearing what? What does that tell me about them? I'm not a shoe person either so I'm reluctant to toss out or donate those shoes that have served me well. I'm heading out to run right now in some brand new shoes---purchased because they were cheap, in my size, and my old ones had holes in them. Of course, the old ones are still here and now I'm not sure what to do with them! Throwing them out seems a poor reward for their years of service!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Exactly! There seems to be some kinship between us and shoes. I love the idea of 'years of service', Molly. Thank you!

      Delete
  4. Now I'm going to have to keep an eye out for shoes in future reading. I can so relate to nostalgia getting in the way of giving away. My weakness is the stuff we accumulated overseas, even if it's far too small for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I understand, still have some small souvenirs from a trip long ago. Hope you'll find a good passage in a book, Chris.

      Delete
  5. I still have my wedding shoes, too, Linda! My younger son "collects" skate-boarding shoes. He just bought a new pair at a consignment store last weekend. After checking the price on the gently used shoes and comparing it to online prices, he said he couldn't pass it up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So many great stories, Lori. I imagine your son was thrilled! Glad to hear about those wedding shoes, too!

      Delete
  6. Lovely! I don't get the shoe thing but I get the collecting. My daughter is a shoe collector as well. I just need something on my feet that keeps them warm and comfortable. I love the poem!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Joanne, I'm enjoying hearing everyone's responses to 'shoes', a story from each. I want them comfortable too!

      Delete
  7. I think getting rid of things is hard for us because of our parents and grandparents. Many of them grew up in a time when there wasn't money to spend on new things so items were kept and repurposed. I keep thinking about all those quilts made from worn out clothes. Saving was ingrained in us so it is hard to part with things.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, Bob. I am reminded of the rubber bands hung over a doorknob, saving for "need", and re-using. It's a teacher thing too, don't you think? I always kept a junk box at school for projects.

      Delete
    2. Your post cer4tainly lightened MY load today too. I'd rather wear old shoes than go through the stress of shopping for and finding "new" ones that really fit...or that I really like....I have many shoes....but wear only a few....I guess that is the take away from your wonderful post....we need very little to be happy.

      Delete
    3. Sometimes it's good to turn to a few mundane topics, Anita. I'm glad it lightened your life a bit. I only wear a few, too, and aside from the Converse, I really do need to decide to give some away. The little house movement is inviting. . .

      Delete
  8. Delighted by your post! Like you, I'd far rather buy a book any day over shoes. Could we say that teachers like us are to books what Imelda Marcos is to shoes? LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Exactly right. I guess some would prefer both.

      Delete
  9. Shoes really are the hardest to give away! I wore my mother's wedding shows on my "Finnish Prom" party! Sadly they did not make the move across the ocean.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love hearing all these stories about special shoes. Thanks for this one, Jaana.

      Delete
  10. Thank goodness there are other people who can admit to liking books more than shoes. I thought I was the only strange one like this out there in the world. But, seriously, after nearly a decade of foot problems, I'd much prefer to have comfortable shoes than cute ones; a stocked library trumps it all!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Exactly right, Stacey. I'm glad you agree. It feels good to bring home a stack of books, but never that good when I have new shoes. I suspect there's a crowd here like us!

      Delete
  11. Books and comfortable shoes! Heavenly!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. After I read your comment about your wedding shoes, I started thinking! I can't remember what my shoes looked like when I got married! Complete blank!

      Delete
    2. Maybe I should have taken a picture, but mine are white (kind of yellowish now) high heels with VERY pointy toes, squeezing those toes. Remember those? Maybe you'll remember, Loralee.

      Delete
  12. Nostalgia hurts the giveaways.

    This line is so true. I love it! Helping others and reducing almost always tugs at my heart. I had to send our baby clothes to my best friend back home because I just couldn't part with them to strangers who might have needed them more. It felt silly but it helped my nostalgia.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At least someone is loving them, right? I understand, Mandy.

      Delete
  13. I love shoes, but not in the way that I think girls are expected to: I hate dress shoes, but adore and hoard tennis shoes and comfy casual shoes! :-) My husband will be quick to point out that I have way too many shoes, although I just got rid of tons when we moved! :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know each of us has our favorites, and mine lately are good tennis shoes, but I only have two pair. I know that you're lots more active than I am, Jennifer, and imagine the move helped weed some things out.

      Delete
  14. Love the pic of these shoes and the drawing you shared on FB. My favorite shoe story was from when I was in college, and a friend offered to buy me a pair of shoes. I wasn't even aware they were worn out. Shoes have never been a priority for me! Thanks for sharing your light-footed slice today!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Very funny, Ramona. That is real 'showing' about your feelings for shoes! Love it!

      Delete
  15. I happen to love shoes, even when they disappoint me. Still memories make them hard to get rid of especially when we stop growing. Those green Chuck Taylors would be particularly hard to get rid of.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing your side, Julieanne. Yes, these green shoes hold a lot of memories!

      Delete
  16. Hello dear surefoot Linda! This makes me want to clean up my clothes drawers & give-away, too. And I love your callback to R. Frost. He was one to employ sturdy, shoes, I'm supposing, so it's quite a good match.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Jan. I have so many things tucked into drawers that never see the light of day! Time to clean out! Love that you mentioned Frost's sturdy shoes. I'm sure you're right!

      Delete
  17. I have about 5 pairs of shoes I like...and I just wear them until they fall apart. I am lazy about shoe,I guess! I love that poem, Linda - you had fun with your dilemma!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Tara, I have my favorites, too, and guess the others are lonely, as Ingrid would say-no attention.

      Delete
  18. Writing is always a way for me to relieve the tension so I thank you for your lightheartedness in this poem. I am a shoe lover but do give away my gently-worn shoes when I feel they are not right for me anymore. I find pleasure in thinking someone may enjoy a pair of my shoes that are not just right for me anymore. Last night, I was sporting a beautiful pair of jeweled, open-toed shoes at a wedding. The funny thing is that they were so expensive but on sale for a great price. It do not a few hundred dollars for shoes but I was going to a family wedding and decided to splurge with the huge sale going on.

    ReplyDelete

Having a conversation is a good thing!