Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Life in a Shoebox

Life in a Shoebox
Biology must play a roll in where you end up working. My grandmother on my father’s side worked in a shoe store and now I find myself in the same situation. I mean, our situations aren’t the “same” seeing is she worked on the East Coast and I work in Southern Ontario and the stores are different, but shoes haven’t changed much in regards to the components that make them up-insole, upper and outsole. I’m probably even selling similar styles that she did when she worked in Halifax seeing is what’s fashionable goes in and out of style constantly. As per a discussion with a co-worker though, I hope acid washed jeans don’t make a comeback no matter how hard they are trying. Some things were never fashionable.
I wonder sometimes if my grandma ever thought I’d be selling shoes like she did. I mean, my selling usually revolves around the client and a lot of the time fashion. Whereas I would think she’d have focused more on quality. Which comments on the society we have created, quantity over quality, and disposable one-use products, versus having shoes for 20 years because they were built properly and with quality materials. Now I do see the upside to man-made materials and saving the planet that way. But it has to come down to 6 of one, half a dozen of another-disposable products taking up a landfill or farming animals for human use. Essentially it leads to the same end-selfishness on the part of human beings always one step “ahead” of the lesser beings on the food chain. Forgetting their instincts, drive to survive, and the ability to pass genes along in order to preserve our own genes within the world.
It comes down to human beings being like shoes. They have an insole, an upper, and an outsole and just like shoes it comes down to the quality of materials and craftsman ship of the individuals who made them. Each person is uniquely crafted to how they end up and how they are defined, just as shoes are defined. Maybe a “stuck up” person would be a high heel and perhaps, a “manly man” is a hiking boot. With shoes, yes the outsole and upper are important, but these all come down to aesthetics and personal preference rather than true need. Just like shoes, in humans the person is based on their “Insole” and how the insole was constructed varies from person to person. In shoes, most people look for a shoe that fits comfortably. While that may not be an exact replica in people, we do look for people we “fit” with, whether it in a friendship or romantic relationship.
The insole, or personality, of a person is shaped in the unending debate of nature verse nurture, that is to say, unlike shoes, the potential to have been born with certain traits. But either way, a human’s inner self is shaped through mechanical hands that twist and tug and pull until they are shaped into what appears to be a human being.
Yet, this is not what people usually look to when considering a shoe or a human being. I, myself, will admit to choose shoes based solely on the look and not the comfort, choosing based on the upper and outsole rather than the insole. And everyday humans make these judgments about other peoples outsole and upper. Rather, the barrier that protects their inner self from being worn by those undeserving of finding the comfort of their insole. The part that was sculpted with loving hands, not bitterness or anger, but gentle caresses, sweet whisperings and most of all love.
So yes, humans are like shoes. They possess an insole, an outsole and an upper, all of which they are judged on and criticized about. But the difference between a “good” shoe and a “bad” shoe is always the test of time, the equation of how long you can have them without wearing out and how long you can wear them without giving in. It’s all about the insole.

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