Kill the Cobbler or Kiss the Cobbler?

This morning dawned gray and gloomy, a cold mist stifling the air. I was already anxious about the task at hand, and the fog only dampened my spirits further. Was this a bad omen, I wondered? But I had no choice. It had to be done.

I stepped to the window of a storefront–“shoe repair” it said… It also said “Locksmith: Keys made while you wait!”

I felt a bit tremulous about the fact that the man to whom I’d soon entrust the safety of my shoes split his time and experience between two such disparate tasks. Shouldn’t he be devoting all his attention to my footwear?!!! Land’s sakes!!!

I tried to be open-minded. Shoe repair, after all, is, regrettably, a dying art. How could I expect anyone to make a living on cobbling alone?

Besides…what choice did I have?

There are two shoe repair men in my neighborhood and one has already proven himself a disappointment. He seems to feel no compunction fo adhere to the store hours posted on his window.

He’d fixed my broken heels but made the left shoe a weensy bit shorter than the right (adding just a blush of “peg-legged pirate” to my characteristic gait). And, unsatisfied by those failures, proceeded to recklessly buff them with a thick, wide swath of black polish, entirely ruining the lovely delicate tan seams that gave them a stylish detailed look.

Still spongy from that first beating, I entered the new shop with trepidation, yet also with a sense of great purpose. I brought with me a pair of my favorites–4-inch heeled, laced-up Nine West oxfords that are perfect with jeans, dresses, suits, and I expect any other garment I might wear.

Oxfords are among my favorites. They’re perfect for that circa 1943 sassy lady newspaper reporter in me–strong but womanly, frisky but smart.

Nine West hasn’t got any available right now, but here are a couple of super-cute oxfords you can buy yourself: “Made By Elves” black heeled oxford only $88 and Anthropologie Brown Peep-Toe Oxfords ON SALE. Yummy Yum Yum.

My poor oxfords…A splintery crack runs across the sole of the shoe. The rubber on the heels has entirely eroded, exposing the dangerously smooth white plastic bones beneath.

I’ve worked these shoes way past their limit. I’ve slipped and pratfallen in public on several occasions. I stomp rather heavily and take long strides, but even after adjusting my gait to be more gingerly, I lost my balance in a conference center on what most certainly is the shiniest, slipperiest, longest floor in the known universe.

I fell right into my boss’s arms. He spared me the ultimate embarassment of collapsing in a messy, noisy heap on the floor, but much as I adore him, I’d have been much more grateful if I’d swooned into the muscular arms of newest Bond portrayer Daniel Craig.

Thus with heavy heart, I dropped my shoes off to go under the hammer and nail.

To be continued…

(If you’re frightened of the cobbler too, have a look at the shoe repair tips here: http://shoes.about.com/od/shoe_care/a/broken_heels.htm. Good luck!)


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February 2008
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