The Great Shoe
P. S. Gifford
Copyright 2005 by P. S. Gifford
This is a true account, none of the names or facts have been changed to protect the innocent, as there were no actual innocents involved…
It was five years ago now it all happened, almost exactly to today’s date. It was my only day off work, a Tuesday, and I decided to do whatever manly man wants to do on his one and only day off from work.-spring clean the bedroom. Hey, what can I tell you I am a bit of a neat freak.
In particular I decided that our modest sliding closet was in dire needs of reorganizing, as every square inch had been jam packed with my wife’s stuff. My stuff? It had long since been relegated to the third bedrooms even more modest wardrobe.
As I dutifully slid the doors open, about fifty pairs of various shoes decided to fall out in a pile. (What exactly is it with woman and shoes?)
With my dog looking on evidently confused, I poured myself a rather large black coffee and set about the daunting task of sorting them out into the appropriate pairs, and taking my life into my own hands deciding which ones needed to go into a cardboard box with the possibility of being thrown away. (Naturally only with my wife’s full approval.-I am not that foolhardy!)
Three hours later, my mission was nearing completion. Several of her dress shoes I had lovingly cleaned up, new laces had been placed into now washed tennis shoes, and everything had been neatly arranged back into the closet. I could not wait for my wife’s reaction. Boy was she going to be pleased with me.
At 6:15 my wife arrived home, dinner was cooking in the oven and a bottle of red wine was breathing on our kitchen table.
“Hello honey bunny” I cried flinging open the front door.
“Hi boo” she replied with an air of caution.
“How was your day” I chirped cheerfully.
“Bloody awful” she replied (although not English herself…Being married to one for so long has rubbed off a bit.)
“Well, how about I run you a nice bubble bath, and bring you in a glass of wine whilst you relax” I countered still feeling cheerful at my days cleaning.
“Erm, okay...” Being a male I was not able to ascertain the suspicions growing in my wife’s now squinting eyes.
“Right then, dinner is in twenty five minutes!”
With that she proceeded to take her bath, and quickly consume that first glass of wine. Evidently she really did have a bad day at work.
Dinner was set, and she was putting on her pajamas when the scream came from the bedroom.
“Gifford, get in here now!” I always knew great trouble was in store when she called me Gifford.
She had apparently just opened the closet and was staring in at her shoes; this wasn’t the reaction I had hoped for.
“Who’s shoes are these “She cried.” pointing to a newly washed pair of sneakers, with new laces "They sure the hell aren’t mine!”
“But, but, but,” I feebly countered. “Sure they are!”
“No there not!” she proclaimed confidently and I swear steam was starting to come from her ears.
“Whose shoes are they?” She demanded and gave me that look that all married men know so well. Whatever I said I was now doomed. She, for the time being at least, was not going to be reasoned with.
“But they are yours!” I was desperate now. “Besides do you think that if anyone else was over they would leave barefooted, and put there shoes in your closet?”
“Maybe” She yelled, “I have met some of your ex’s and there weren’t all too bright.”
Dinner that night was eaten in silence. I watched as she angrily chomped down her steak and kidney pudding and several glasses of merlot.
It was after dinner she once more went back and examined the shoes, now sitting on the foot of the bed. Recognition seemed to be finally washing over her face.
“Wait a minute” she says, her tone suddenly less fierce. “I do remember these shoes…I haven’t seen them in years.”
I have to admit that whilst making up that night was particularly fun. I have never since reorganized my wife’s shoe closet.
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