Crocs and Croc-wannabe's are springing up
everywhere again, which reminds me of an encounter I observed
between Holly and the fashion police.
"You got the wrong ones," her friend announced, with eyes
downcast at Holly's new shoes, which were pink, plastic, and
closely resembled those wildly trendy Crocs.
Apparently, the resemblance wasn't close enough for Holly's
friend, whose tiny toes sported the 'right' ones.
"Whoa," I said reflexively, "they're fine shoes. And
really, what makes any shoe the right shoe or the wrong
shoe?" Holly bit her lip. She'd made a major fashion
faux-pas, and no amount of mommy-reframing was gonna save her.
But really, what gives? At the time, these two were
six years old. Six!
That night at bedtime, a tucked-in and teary Holly sniffed and
asked if we could possibly go to the shoe store as soon as she woke
I scooted her over in her bed to make room for Mommy. For
this conversation, I needed to be comfortable.
"You know something, Miss Holly? I've been thinking about
the whole shoe she-nanigan," I began. My silliness elicited a
teeny-weeny smile from my daughter, so I continued. "Let's
think about this, shall we? She (a cutie-pie who is
forgiven but shall remain nameless) spent twenty-nine dollars plus
tax on her shoes, and you spent nine. So who's the smarty-
Yeah, baby. Big smile from Holly. Encouraged, I
embarked on a terribly erudite philosophical monologue about
consumer trends, perceived value and just how much fun it can be to
think critically about fads and to just Payless (I don't know if
they sell Croc wannabe's, but I couldn't resist the wordplay).
We're talking plastic, people. I'm a bargain hunter at my
core, but plastic shoes? Well, the buck stops here. I draw
the line at one pair of flip-flops per customer. And anyhow, buying
all of those chunky plastic shoes just unduly supports the
petroleum industry. I don't know about you, but recent
headlines about the broken oil well continuing to gush unabated
into the Gulf makes me question the wisdom of that game plan. Not
so environmentally friendly. I'm not knockin' plastics
altogether, mind you. We've benefited greatly from plastics
used in the medicine (catheters, IV's, etc.) - just for
starters - but think about it.
What will archeologists say about us in two-hundred years when
they unearth all of our colorful, clownish crocs in croc-choked
landfills? Will they scratch their heads and wonder - not
just about our peculiar fashion sense - but about how we let down
our polar bear brothers and sea turtle sisters by picking up so
many crocs on our shopping sprees? Perhaps Holly and I
will rethink our shoe buying habits altogether. Become more
discerning and all that.
So to heck with the fashion police. (But do I have to give up my
Jennifer DuBose, M.S., C.A.S., is a licensed marriage and family therapist in private practice in Batavia.
See more of Jennifer's stories here.
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