“You can wear anything as long as you put a nice pair of shoes with it.”

Today I’m tired for no reason as I slept just fine. It may be the clouds and the coolness giving me a bit of a down day. My to do card has change litter, change bed, shower, do a wash and go to the dump. I’m thinking that list has something to do with my mood. Not one thing is fun. If I were a Disney character I could just sing The Happy Little Working Song and the spawns of Satan, the chipmunk who lives in my lawn, the mice probably still hiding in the cellar and the birds from the feeders could join in the cleaning. Then again I could just Whistle While I Work and even make it a happy tune. Somehow, though, none of that is appealing. I choose to wallow in my mood.

This is it: the final week before school starts. It was a mad dash for my mother to get us all ready. Mostly we needed new school shoes and whatever parts of the uniform we had out-grown over the summer. I usually got a new blouse or two, always white, and my brother generally needed new pants and new white shirts. The shoes were always sturdy, meant to be worn most of the school year. We didn’t have much money, but my mother never skimped on school shoes and clothes because we had to wear them every day. She always figured it was cheaper in the long run to buy more expensive clothes rather than constantly replacing them. The rule, of course, was to get out of our school clothes into our play clothes as soon as we got home.

I don’t remember when the categories disappeared and all of what I wore just became clothes. When I was little, we had school clothes, play clothes and church clothes. None of them were ever interchangeable. Most of my clothes were play clothes because I wore a uniform to school and a dress to church, usually an old Easter or Christmas dress. My Sunday shoes were also dressy, sometimes patent leather with a strap. My play shoes were usually sneakers or shoes which in a former life had been school shoes demoted because they were worn and scuffed with a sloping heel.

I really liked going to the shoe store, putting my feet in the x-ray machine to see the bones and having the shoe salesman check my size using the sliding silver sizer. I’d wander to look at the shoes on display, always only one shoe of a pair, and them pick out some to try on until I’d found the perfect pair: the pair my mother and I could agreed upon. She’d pay for them, but I always proudly carried the bag with the shoe box inside. They were my new shoes.

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23 Comments on ““You can wear anything as long as you put a nice pair of shoes with it.””

  1. Hedley Says:

    Kat, from my Little Fluffy Cloud, I would like to include the wonderful Kirsty from the fabgear “Tropical Brainstorm”, performing a live version of “In these shoes”

    • olof1 Says:

      One of my absolute favorite artists and one of my absolute favorite songs!
      Christer.

      • Hedley Says:

        Christer
        Yes, she was absolutely wonderful and gone far too young. I think that Tropical Brainstorm is my favorite album.
        Hedley

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      I searched fruitlessly for an MP3 of this song as it was one I wanted to post today. All my usual places let me down.

      Thank you for posting this!!

    • im6 Says:

      Not to take anything away from Kirsty, but I prefer the version by Bette Midler (of course, I would since she’s my all-time favorite performer). And, Kat, listen for the special call out to you at 0:43.

      • im6 Says:

        Looks like you may have to click the YouTube button at the bottom of the screen.

      • katry Says:

        im6,
        One of the best concerts I ever saw, maybe even the best, was Bette’s. She gives this song a whole new feeling, the Bette touch I suppose I’d call it.

        Besides Bette, adds Peace Corps to her lyrics!

      • im6 Says:

        Kat, I know what you mean about Bette in concert. I’ve seen her several times — the first time, of course, was the best. That was very, very early in her career before she became the darling of the sweater set set. If you’ve never seen her concert movie, “Divine Madness,” I wholeheartedly recommend it. As always, it’s an amazing SHOW (she doesn’t just give a concert). Naughty, bawdy and full of energy and laughs. Only later did I learn the 2 nights they filmed it, Bette had pneumonia and a high fever, but it would have been too costly to cancel, so the show must go on… You’d never know it, however, and it’s considered one of the best concert films of all time.

      • katry Says:

        im6,
        I don’t remember the year I saw her, but one of the spectacular songs and sets was her Under the Sea. She also sang Hello in There from her first album, and that one brings me to tears every time I hear it.

        She is the most spectacular performer!

      • olof1 Says:

        Another one of my favorite artists 🙂 Like this version too.

  2. olof1 Says:

    They had found out that those xray thingies were dangerous by the time I goit that old that I would have like testing it 🙂 I can’t remember ever having category clothes, I guess I had some clothes for Christmas or parties but I really can’t remember any 🙂

    We’ve had yet another wonderful day here and a really cold night, perhaps we’ll get the first night with frost at the usual time? First week of September and after that it can take weeks before it happens again.

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      I knew later they had been deemed dangerous, but they were such fun. We pushed each other away to keep testing it on our feet.

      We had school uniforms you never wore anywhere else and dresses for church. We had to get right out of our uniforms so we wouldn’t soil them when we got home. The rule was, “Put on your play clothes.” That is why I put them into categories. They weren’t known that way, but that’s what they really were when I think back about them.

      Another great day here too. The other night was really cold-perfect for sleeping.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      What’s not to love about Bette?

  3. Birgit Says:

    I didn’t like buying shoes when I was a kid (no voice/choice) and I don’t like it now (no standard feet size). But let’s honor another great invention, today is “World Toilet Paper Day”! I’ve just learned the needless fact that due to the different paper structure Americans usually crumple the paper whereas we usually fold it. Tomorrow is “Just Because Day”, do whatever you want. But please blog 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Birgit,
      I at least got some choice though mu mother had the final say. Shoes were the only individual choices in our uniforms so my mother tried to let us have what we wanted.

      Yup, we’re a country of crumplers. I would think folding would take a bit of time.

      I have so many Just Because Days now I love it!

  4. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Clothes had categories when I was a kid, too. There were school clothes, play clothes, and dress clothes. School shoes were things like saddle shoes or penny loafers. I put dimes in my penny loafers just because. I remember having to polish the white parts of my saddle shoes with that white Kiwi stuff. The bottle had a cap with a long wire attached inside that had a sponge on the end. Later they had an applicator top that didn’t require opening the bottle. Didn’t matter. I always got white polish all over my fingers every time.

    I had a thing for shoes. I loved shoe shopping. It was probably my one girlie attribute. Nowadays I can’t wear heels or even anything really unsensible and my shoe collection is vastly reduced. And pretty boring as well. 🙂

    Today was a nothing day here. Errands included post office, gas station, a bit of playtime for Rocky at the lake, filler grocery shopping. After that we both had a nap. So exciting. 😀

    Enjoy the rest of the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I loved my saddle shoes, and I liked that Kiwi applicator. It was easier to stay on the white and not get the black messy. When I had one color shoes, my dad always polished them when he polished his own. He was a spit and polish guy who also used a shoe brush to get the shine.

      I’m not a shoe lover. I want mine to be comfortable, nice looking, but comfort is tops. I have about three or four pairs, mostly winter shoes, as I wear sandals all summer.

      I did my house chores but never went out. The trash and litter are in the trunk so we’ll go tomorrow. I do feel accomplished!

      Have a great evening!

  5. flyboybob Says:

    Who knows how many Roentgens of radiation we received as we looked at the bones in our feet while in those fluoroscope machines. I wonder how many shoe salesman died young from various malignancies as a result of working around those things until they were outlawed.

    In the Dallas school district the uniform for boys was blue jeans, Lees or Levi’s, tee shirts and Keds high top black sneakers. When the weather got cooler my mother dressed me in long sleeve sport shirts with a light jacket. I don’t remember what the girls wore because I didn’t notice the opposite sex until after the eighth grade. I didn’t get the courage to ask a girl on a date until I was a sophomore in High School 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      Those were the days families went to the desert to watch the A-bomb testing so putting our feet into the fluoroscope machine didn’t even merit any worry. My mother was more concerned that we take turns.

      We had real uniforms, all Catholic schools did. In the public schools, t-shirts were not allowed. Shirts had to have collars. I don’t remember if jeans were acceptable or not.

      It wasn’t all that unusual to have a first date in high school. Most times parents had rules about when you could date. I remember 16 was common for a couple though you could go in a group when you were younger.

  6. Lori Kossowsky Says:

    I think I’ll wallow with you. I had to have special orthopedic shoes when I went to school. No neat penny loafers, with the shiny penny or pretty shoes to wear to a party. So, I used to hide them to get ride of them. In the car, when my dad went off to work, all sorts of places. I was almost always found out– besides they had an extra pair. What I had hidden always showed up like magic. Since my Aunt had a children’s clothing store, all our clothes were from her store. We went to school after labor day, I don’t quite remember when, but it was often warm outside, and there I was dressed in my best wool or some other outfit that was meant for Autumn, not a warm summer day.
    I have never seen Bette Midler in concert, I’m sad to say.
    Think it is time to wave now..
    Waving,
    Lori and Crew

    • katry Says:

      Lori,
      We just had run of the mill shoes so no hiding for us. I figure you probably didn’t have many choices so I can understand your reluctance to wear them.

      We always started school the Tuesday after Labor Day, and they still do here though in many places they started this week. In Colorado, my nephew’s son is already on his third week of school.

      Because we wore uniforms, the material didn’t matter. It was worn for every season.

      You have seen far more concerts than I!!

      Waving,
      Snoring Gracie and the kitties


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