Friday, November 30, 2007

The woman with one white shoe

I woke up at four am to write my lesson plan for today and rushed out the door to school. Classes went fine, except for the seventh graders. When I was that age, I often wondered why our teachers treated us as if they didn't like us. Now I see why. I wouldn't have liked us either.

I came home for lunch, and, as is my habit, kicked off my shoes while sitting at my desk, and rested for an hour or so before getting back in the car to run errands all afternoon. I paid bills, ran by my sister's house, took my oldest shopping for jeans, went to the feed store for dog food, and finally dropped by my Mom's to return some movies we've borrowed (Live Free/Die Hard was fun).

It was at my Mom's house that my son glanced down and said with a grin, "Hey Mom, nice shoes."

I looked, wondering what on earth could possibly be nice about sensible black nikes. And there it was: a black shoe on my right foot. On the left was a white New Balance. One white tennis shoe and one black, said my brain. It composed the fact slowly so I wouldn't miss it. White. Black. Black. white.

Clearly today wasn't the first time this week I'd taken my shoes off while sitting at my desk. However it was the first time I'd mixed and matched.

"Oh my god. How in the world did I miss that?"

"You were probably in a hurry, Hon," said my giggling mother.

I had been, I agreed. I didn't even look at them, just put them on while giving orders to the boys. That's it. I was not an absent minded goon, I was simply an over whelmed, distracted mother trying faithfully to meet everyone's needs. It could happen to anyone. Right?

Not inclined to let me off the hook for anything, ever, my very helpful son said, "What I want to know is how you didn't notice that the white tennis shoe had shoelaces and the black tennis shoe had velcro."

Thanks son. I can always count on you to make me feel better. I can feel another moment of absent-mindedness coming on. This time I might just forget to add your name to my will. No soup for you.

I hope that little story makes you feel better about your own foolish moments this week. Let me know if it's not strong enough. I have other moments I keep on file for just such occasions.

I am now going to go wash the blonde out of my hair. It may take several washings, though.


Dennis Bryant said...

If it's any consolation, I've done the same thing, but with one steel-toe boot and one hiking boot. Luckily construction workers are such a polite and cirmspect group of folks and didn't give me any grief about it (ahem)

My theory is that absent-mindedness is a hallmark of a creative mind.

Mary O. Paddock said...

Thanks Dennis. That does help a bit.

Apparently my husband, the ex-Marine, once showed up for inspection with mismatched boots. 'Didn't go over well. This story didn't come from him, though, but from one of his old friends who thought I needed to know, despite my husband's embarrassed claims to the contrary.

Mary O. Paddock said...

Oh and if that absent-mindedness/creative mind link is accurate--I'm loaded with imagination.