In Case You've Wondered

My blog is where my wandering thoughts are interspersed with stuff I made up. So, if while reading you find yourself confused about the context, don't feel alone. I get confused, too.

If you're here for the stories, I started another blog:

One other thing: sometimes I write words you refuse to use in front of children, or polite company, unless you have a flat tire, or hit your thumb with a hammer.

I don't use them to offend; I use them to embellish.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


When I was a child, we'd officially shed our shoes on the last day of school. After that, almost the entire summer was spent barefooted.

It would take a few weeks, but our feet would develop calluses similar to leather. At around 1/4 inch thick, they would protect our feet from anything, except broken glass bottles. We could walk across hot asphalt paving without flinching. The oyster shell parking lots, which were common at that time, required walking carefully, but didn't stop us in our travels.

Our feet took a beating. The worst was usually a missed pedal, which dragged the top of our foot under the pedal of a bicycle. This usually took off a substantial piece of hide, or most of a toenail. This would slow us down, but we still avoided shoes. Blackberry vines were a concern; they wouldn't hurt the bottom of our feet, but the sides would be scratched if you weren't careful.

I remember riding on the handlebars of a friend's bicycle. This required sitting carefully and placing my feet on the two bolts that held the front wheel in place. We were in hurry, so he was peddling as fast as he could. When he hit a bump, I lost my footing, which pushed my foot into the spokes.  The next thing I knew, I was face planted on the paving and wondering what was broken when the bicycle, and friend, suddenly ended all forward motion and fipped onto my back.

After a few moments of analysis, I realized I had some scrapes, my foot was bruised, but not broken, and I would survive. I shook it off and we went about our business, although I did limp for a few days and we had to replace some spokes on the bicycle.

Today, my feet are no tougher than those of a newborn. There are no calluses and the smallest of twigs makes me flinch. It would be impossible to walk on hot paving and if walking across a shell parking lot was the only way I could get food, I'd probably starve.

There is a saying "No man is an island" ...I'll add, "unless he doesn't have shoes".


  1. Man, I could have written this post. It perfectly describes the summers of my childhood, right down to the shell parking lots. I've knocked the tops off my big toes more times than I could count, and even did the handlebar launch once. Nowadays, I won't walk through the kitchen without something on my feet, for fear there might be a crumb on the floor.

  2. Owww. I would think of something witty to reply, but I'm fresh out of substance and puppy breath.

  3. Yep, I remember when my feet were like that. Then I became a teenager, learned to drive, and got lazy. Now my feet are like a newborn's as well

  4. fuckin'a. same here. you inspire me.

  5. To this day, I only wear shoes if I have to go out and about. The minute I hit the door, off they go. When I was little, I also spent the summer "betterfooted", as I used to mispronounce it. My mom said she could hear me coming a half-block away from my tap-shoe-quality-tough feet hitting the sidewalk.
    They're still pretty much like that, but along the way I developed a hearty bugphobia, so I wear 'em outside for avoidance/squishing purposes.
    Broke my toe several times on a guy's cup in kickboxing class. Broke the cup once.

  6. I was thinking along these lines a few days ago...when was the last time you saw a genuine, thick scab on a scraped knee? I've been teaching for over 16 years now, and have not seen this evidence of genuine play in quite some time.

  7. It's been a long time. We used to have scabs that covered the entire knee and must have been a half inch thick.

    We kept them covered with "monkey blood", which was Merthiolate.