Walk of Shame

 

The Walk Home

The clomping of my shoes is the only sound as I walk my way through Palermo. I pull back the sleeve of my jacket to check the time: 6:27am. I’ve been out all night again and I’ve still got about 40 minutes worth of walking ahead of me. Perfecto.

A few more blocks pass and shopkeepers have started to appear, one and all they uncoil hoses and spray down the sidewalk in front of their businesses, cleansing the cement and pushing the trash that has accumulated overnight into the streets where it will no longer be their problem. I keep my pace steady, splashing through the spreading puddles, tracking heel-to-toe footprints behind me.

The Slide

Fast-forward 20 minutes and I’m at Ave Santa Fe. It’s a straight-shot back to my apartment, so I space out a bit, allowing my mind to wander, my steps serving as a metronome for thoughts without syncopation. I stop at the edge of a curb to wait for a red light and my heel slides forward 3 inches on the uneven surface. Damn soles. This has happened before.

The sour truth that I’ve been trying not to acknowledge is that my shoes are actually wearing down quite quickly. When I first bought them, the bottoms were completely slick with not a speck of traction, so I walked them around outside and scuffed them up on some gravel and took a little sandpaper to them. Problem solved.

But here I am again, wearing the shoes that I love and slip sliding across grocery store tiles, hardwood floors and tightly woven carpet. And oddly angled curbs. Can’t forget about the curbs.

The Confession

My real problem here is not that these things have nearly sent me sailing down three different flights of stairs, or that they are constantly leaving me flailing when I come to an abrupt stop while shopping for granola bars at the local Disco (a grocery store chain). The problem is that I love the look and feel of them so much that I haven’t replaced them, despite their obvious flaws.

Let me say it again: I love these shoes. Because they are sassy. And because they have interesting seams. And zippers. ZIPPERS! A goal of mine for this project was to not wear anything black while traveling, so I had to get some cool brown shoes that could be worn casually or in a nicer setting for my trip. I wanted shoes that would be comfortable (check), stylish (check), have solid construction (check) and not shoot me in to traffic as if I’m trying to walk on ice (no check).

They speak to me in the way only a design that fits your personal aesthetics possibly can, and as a result I’ve been ashamed of myself for breaking one of the tenets of my project, which is to own the best, most practical objects I possibly can (because I don’t have much). It’s time to make things right.

The Solution

Tomorrow I will head into a local shoe repair shop and see if they can somehow give my zapatos some tread. If not, I’ll ditch my beautiful shoes (even though the insoles are silver) and replace them with something more functional. If I can, I’ll dance around Santa Fe until the policia drag me away for public intoxication.

Either way I’ll enjoy these last few hours of slipping and sliding my way around town, bumping into strangers, knocking things over and generally having a really good (and sassy) time, shamed no more now that I have a plan of action.

71 comments

  1. 1. Wow. Those shoes have gotten A LOT of wear since I last saw them. And…

    2. NO! You can’t get rid of the awesomest shoes in the world!!! Those shoes rivaled Charmoné! And…

    3. Beautifully written tale. Please write fairy tales that I can read at night and smile because your “I’m here in this oh-so-real yet oh-so-magical place writing style is making me wish I was ten again and didn’t know the real meaning of ‘the walk of shame.’ and I smile. Thanks for making me smile.

  2. 1. Wow. Those shoes have gotten A LOT of wear since I last saw them. And…

    2. NO! You can’t get rid of the awesomest shoes in the world!!! Those shoes rivaled Charmoné! And…

    3. Beautifully written tale. Please write fairy tales that I can read at night and smile because your “I’m here in this oh-so-real yet oh-so-magical place writing style is making me wish I was ten again and didn’t know the real meaning of ‘the walk of shame.’ and I smile. Thanks for making me smile.

  3. 1. Wow. Those shoes have gotten A LOT of wear since I last saw them. And…

    2. NO! You can’t get rid of the awesomest shoes in the world!!! Those shoes rivaled Charmoné! And…

    3. Beautifully written tale. Please write fairy tales that I can read at night and smile because your “I’m here in this oh-so-real yet oh-so-magical place writing style is making me wish I was ten again and didn’t know the real meaning of ‘the walk of shame.’ and I smile. Thanks for making me smile.

  4. 1. Wow. Those shoes have gotten A LOT of wear since I last saw them. And…

    2. NO! You can’t get rid of the awesomest shoes in the world!!! Those shoes rivaled Charmoné! And…

    3. Beautifully written tale. Please write fairy tales that I can read at night and smile because your “I’m here in this oh-so-real yet oh-so-magical place writing style is making me wish I was ten again and didn’t know the real meaning of ‘the walk of shame.’ and I smile. Thanks for making me smile.

  5. Ok, those are awesome. Do whatever you can to fix them! I’m sure someone will be able to add some traction. I like the story posts that you’ve been writing, it’s really entertaining reading.

  6. Ok, those are awesome. Do whatever you can to fix them! I’m sure someone will be able to add some traction. I like the story posts that you’ve been writing, it’s really entertaining reading.

  7. Ok, those are awesome. Do whatever you can to fix them! I’m sure someone will be able to add some traction. I like the story posts that you’ve been writing, it’s really entertaining reading.

  8. Ok, those are awesome. Do whatever you can to fix them! I’m sure someone will be able to add some traction. I like the story posts that you’ve been writing, it’s really entertaining reading.

  9. I’ve always wondered why it’s called the walk of shame. In the UK it means that you hooked up with someone and stayed at their place.

    You have to walk home the next day in your going out clothes. Don’t know why you should be ashamed of that! :)

  10. I’ve always wondered why it’s called the walk of shame. In the UK it means that you hooked up with someone and stayed at their place.

    You have to walk home the next day in your going out clothes. Don’t know why you should be ashamed of that! :)

  11. I’ve always wondered why it’s called the walk of shame. In the UK it means that you hooked up with someone and stayed at their place.

    You have to walk home the next day in your going out clothes. Don’t know why you should be ashamed of that! :)

  12. I’ve always wondered why it’s called the walk of shame. In the UK it means that you hooked up with someone and stayed at their place.

    You have to walk home the next day in your going out clothes. Don’t know why you should be ashamed of that! :)

  13. @Kristin: Yeah, as my main shoes (I have my Vibram Five Fingers and some leather flip-flops, but these see 99% of the action) and with the sheer amount of walking I’ve done this last month, they’re earning their keep. Glad I could make you smile :)

    @Gordie: Yeah, this isn’t the first time I’ve had trouble with them. I think there’s some kind of traction-pad I can adhere to the bottom, verdad?

    @Carlos: I’ll definitely let you know! Can help me translate ‘slippery sole’ and ‘sassy’ into castellano, plus, we need to grab lunch again sometime soon!

    @enjayneer: I know, right? They’re fancy but worn. Perfect, in my mind!

    @Nate: I definitely hope so! And thanks; it’s really helpful to find out what people like, writing-style-wise. Still figuring out different voices/styles to use, and I want to make sure people aren’t reading and thinking ‘laaaaaame.’

    @NomadicNeil: Haha, misnomer, I think. No shame in it, folks. Walk home with your head held high!

  14. @Kristin: Yeah, as my main shoes (I have my Vibram Five Fingers and some leather flip-flops, but these see 99% of the action) and with the sheer amount of walking I’ve done this last month, they’re earning their keep. Glad I could make you smile :)

    @Gordie: Yeah, this isn’t the first time I’ve had trouble with them. I think there’s some kind of traction-pad I can adhere to the bottom, verdad?

    @Carlos: I’ll definitely let you know! Can help me translate ‘slippery sole’ and ‘sassy’ into castellano, plus, we need to grab lunch again sometime soon!

    @enjayneer: I know, right? They’re fancy but worn. Perfect, in my mind!

    @Nate: I definitely hope so! And thanks; it’s really helpful to find out what people like, writing-style-wise. Still figuring out different voices/styles to use, and I want to make sure people aren’t reading and thinking ‘laaaaaame.’

    @NomadicNeil: Haha, misnomer, I think. No shame in it, folks. Walk home with your head held high!

  15. @Kristin: Yeah, as my main shoes (I have my Vibram Five Fingers and some leather flip-flops, but these see 99% of the action) and with the sheer amount of walking I’ve done this last month, they’re earning their keep. Glad I could make you smile :)

    @Gordie: Yeah, this isn’t the first time I’ve had trouble with them. I think there’s some kind of traction-pad I can adhere to the bottom, verdad?

    @Carlos: I’ll definitely let you know! Can help me translate ‘slippery sole’ and ‘sassy’ into castellano, plus, we need to grab lunch again sometime soon!

    @enjayneer: I know, right? They’re fancy but worn. Perfect, in my mind!

    @Nate: I definitely hope so! And thanks; it’s really helpful to find out what people like, writing-style-wise. Still figuring out different voices/styles to use, and I want to make sure people aren’t reading and thinking ‘laaaaaame.’

    @NomadicNeil: Haha, misnomer, I think. No shame in it, folks. Walk home with your head held high!

  16. Those shoes are ROCKIN. I’m with Neil–I thought the walk of shame describes the walk back to your place of residence after having hooked up with someone in the area. But slipping and sliding and tumbling your way around Palermo? That works too!

  17. Those shoes are ROCKIN. I’m with Neil–I thought the walk of shame describes the walk back to your place of residence after having hooked up with someone in the area. But slipping and sliding and tumbling your way around Palermo? That works too!

  18. @Alan: Thank you, sir! Yeah, I used the ‘Walk of Shame’ as a play on words…since I was actually coming back from someone else’s place and was ashamed of the sliding situation (see what I did there? ;) )

  19. @Alan: Thank you, sir! Yeah, I used the ‘Walk of Shame’ as a play on words…since I was actually coming back from someone else’s place and was ashamed of the sliding situation (see what I did there? ;) )

  20. @Alan: Thank you, sir! Yeah, I used the ‘Walk of Shame’ as a play on words…since I was actually coming back from someone else’s place and was ashamed of the sliding situation (see what I did there? ;) )

  21. @Alan: Thank you, sir! Yeah, I used the ‘Walk of Shame’ as a play on words…since I was actually coming back from someone else’s place and was ashamed of the sliding situation (see what I did there? ;) )

  22. They said that shoes reflects your personality, and those definitely have a lot of character!
    I’ve a pair of mine that I sent to the repair shop ’cause they were almost comatose.
    I don’t believe in sentimentalism but I know I couldn’t get rid of these shoes, they are a part of my daily life, I just love how comfortable they are and how good they look of course!

  23. They said that shoes reflects your personality, and those definitely have a lot of character!
    I’ve a pair of mine that I sent to the repair shop ’cause they were almost comatose.
    I don’t believe in sentimentalism but I know I couldn’t get rid of these shoes, they are a part of my daily life, I just love how comfortable they are and how good they look of course!

  24. They said that shoes reflects your personality, and those definitely have a lot of character!
    I’ve a pair of mine that I sent to the repair shop ’cause they were almost comatose.
    I don’t believe in sentimentalism but I know I couldn’t get rid of these shoes, they are a part of my daily life, I just love how comfortable they are and how good they look of course!

  25. They said that shoes reflects your personality, and those definitely have a lot of character!
    I’ve a pair of mine that I sent to the repair shop ’cause they were almost comatose.
    I don’t believe in sentimentalism but I know I couldn’t get rid of these shoes, they are a part of my daily life, I just love how comfortable they are and how good they look of course!

  26. @Javier: Thanks! Guess I’m a sassy dude. Which repair shop did you use? Is it in Recoleta? I’m the same…not sentimental, but these babies were a find, and they are perfect other than the whole ‘almost killing me all the time’ thing.

    @Benjamin: Ah! So black is what I’ve always worn more than any other color. It just goes with everything, and I had more of it than most people (I’m a designer, so sue me!). In any case, I’ve read a few things that indicated that what you wear can impact your level of happiness, attitude, etc. I don’t know how much impact it can actually have, but it seemed like a good enough excuse to try and not wear any black while I travel (combined with the fact that it makes me try new things…never been big on brown shoes). I was mostly successful: my Macbook Pro’s bag/sleeve is black (it didn’t come in any other color) and I have one pair of black boxer-briefs (stupid Banana Republic…the box said gray). My hat also has a very small black tag on the inside (didn’t notice until after it was purchased). I’ll let you know how it turns out (working so far! Good mood!).

  27. @Javier: Thanks! Guess I’m a sassy dude. Which repair shop did you use? Is it in Recoleta? I’m the same…not sentimental, but these babies were a find, and they are perfect other than the whole ‘almost killing me all the time’ thing.

    @Benjamin: Ah! So black is what I’ve always worn more than any other color. It just goes with everything, and I had more of it than most people (I’m a designer, so sue me!). In any case, I’ve read a few things that indicated that what you wear can impact your level of happiness, attitude, etc. I don’t know how much impact it can actually have, but it seemed like a good enough excuse to try and not wear any black while I travel (combined with the fact that it makes me try new things…never been big on brown shoes). I was mostly successful: my Macbook Pro’s bag/sleeve is black (it didn’t come in any other color) and I have one pair of black boxer-briefs (stupid Banana Republic…the box said gray). My hat also has a very small black tag on the inside (didn’t notice until after it was purchased). I’ll let you know how it turns out (working so far! Good mood!).

  28. @Javier: Thanks! Guess I’m a sassy dude. Which repair shop did you use? Is it in Recoleta? I’m the same…not sentimental, but these babies were a find, and they are perfect other than the whole ‘almost killing me all the time’ thing.

    @Benjamin: Ah! So black is what I’ve always worn more than any other color. It just goes with everything, and I had more of it than most people (I’m a designer, so sue me!). In any case, I’ve read a few things that indicated that what you wear can impact your level of happiness, attitude, etc. I don’t know how much impact it can actually have, but it seemed like a good enough excuse to try and not wear any black while I travel (combined with the fact that it makes me try new things…never been big on brown shoes). I was mostly successful: my Macbook Pro’s bag/sleeve is black (it didn’t come in any other color) and I have one pair of black boxer-briefs (stupid Banana Republic…the box said gray). My hat also has a very small black tag on the inside (didn’t notice until after it was purchased). I’ll let you know how it turns out (working so far! Good mood!).

  29. @Javier: Thanks! Guess I’m a sassy dude. Which repair shop did you use? Is it in Recoleta? I’m the same…not sentimental, but these babies were a find, and they are perfect other than the whole ‘almost killing me all the time’ thing.

    @Benjamin: Ah! So black is what I’ve always worn more than any other color. It just goes with everything, and I had more of it than most people (I’m a designer, so sue me!). In any case, I’ve read a few things that indicated that what you wear can impact your level of happiness, attitude, etc. I don’t know how much impact it can actually have, but it seemed like a good enough excuse to try and not wear any black while I travel (combined with the fact that it makes me try new things…never been big on brown shoes). I was mostly successful: my Macbook Pro’s bag/sleeve is black (it didn’t come in any other color) and I have one pair of black boxer-briefs (stupid Banana Republic…the box said gray). My hat also has a very small black tag on the inside (didn’t notice until after it was purchased). I’ll let you know how it turns out (working so far! Good mood!).

  30. “Let me say it again: I love these shoes. Because they are sassy.”

    I so know what you mean. I have a pair of maroon Doc Martens that a friend of mine gave me in Ireland. She’d had them for nearly 20 years. I love them so much, despite the fact that they smell pretty musty after 10 years in her garage. Plus, the soles are so worn that I can feel almost everything I’m walking on. But I love them. Because they’re sassy (and kind of badass).

  31. “Let me say it again: I love these shoes. Because they are sassy.”

    I so know what you mean. I have a pair of maroon Doc Martens that a friend of mine gave me in Ireland. She’d had them for nearly 20 years. I love them so much, despite the fact that they smell pretty musty after 10 years in her garage. Plus, the soles are so worn that I can feel almost everything I’m walking on. But I love them. Because they’re sassy (and kind of badass).

  32. “Let me say it again: I love these shoes. Because they are sassy.”

    I so know what you mean. I have a pair of maroon Doc Martens that a friend of mine gave me in Ireland. She’d had them for nearly 20 years. I love them so much, despite the fact that they smell pretty musty after 10 years in her garage. Plus, the soles are so worn that I can feel almost everything I’m walking on. But I love them. Because they’re sassy (and kind of badass).

  33. Hi Colin,

    If they aren’t able to put the zip back into your zapatos you could always throw on a cool pair of roller blades and cruise the streets. This option is

    (1) more economical and efficient than dusty, old shoes (get from A to B much quicker and with less expended energy) and (2) you would become an instant celebrity in BA and forever be known as “that roller-blading American guy.”

    Kills two birds with one stone if you ask me…just make sure to go with blades that have bright colors!

    Paul

  34. Hi Colin,

    If they aren’t able to put the zip back into your zapatos you could always throw on a cool pair of roller blades and cruise the streets. This option is

    (1) more economical and efficient than dusty, old shoes (get from A to B much quicker and with less expended energy) and (2) you would become an instant celebrity in BA and forever be known as “that roller-blading American guy.”

    Kills two birds with one stone if you ask me…just make sure to go with blades that have bright colors!

    Paul

  35. Hi Colin,

    If they aren’t able to put the zip back into your zapatos you could always throw on a cool pair of roller blades and cruise the streets. This option is

    (1) more economical and efficient than dusty, old shoes (get from A to B much quicker and with less expended energy) and (2) you would become an instant celebrity in BA and forever be known as “that roller-blading American guy.”

    Kills two birds with one stone if you ask me…just make sure to go with blades that have bright colors!

    Paul

  36. @Eve: They sound really fantastic. Keep rockin’ them, Eve! ‘Til they’re dust!

    @Paul: Haha, you are clearly a man who understands the value of a good personal brand! That’s a good way to get known pretty quickly (though the delivery guys around here roller blade from place to place, so I’d probably be the ‘American delivery guy who never has any food for us’). If I do take this path, be assured the blades I pick will be the gaudiest things you’ve ever seen.

  37. @Eve: They sound really fantastic. Keep rockin’ them, Eve! ‘Til they’re dust!

    @Paul: Haha, you are clearly a man who understands the value of a good personal brand! That’s a good way to get known pretty quickly (though the delivery guys around here roller blade from place to place, so I’d probably be the ‘American delivery guy who never has any food for us’). If I do take this path, be assured the blades I pick will be the gaudiest things you’ve ever seen.

  38. Never had a pair of shoes with zippers. Love the style! But you’re right on about the leather being too slick. Still though — I’d say get’em fixed. The history you’ve developed says keep ‘em.

  39. Never had a pair of shoes with zippers. Love the style! But you’re right on about the leather being too slick. Still though — I’d say get’em fixed. The history you’ve developed says keep ‘em.

  40. Never had a pair of shoes with zippers. Love the style! But you’re right on about the leather being too slick. Still though — I’d say get’em fixed. The history you’ve developed says keep ‘em.

  41. Never had a pair of shoes with zippers. Love the style! But you’re right on about the leather being too slick. Still though — I’d say get’em fixed. The history you’ve developed says keep ‘em.

  42. Damn it has been awhile since I did the walk of shame at 630am. Something about going out when the sun goes down or is already down and coming out of that club/bar/house party and it is a new sunny day.

    Nice shoes by the way!

  43. Damn it has been awhile since I did the walk of shame at 630am. Something about going out when the sun goes down or is already down and coming out of that club/bar/house party and it is a new sunny day.

    Nice shoes by the way!

  44. Damn it has been awhile since I did the walk of shame at 630am. Something about going out when the sun goes down or is already down and coming out of that club/bar/house party and it is a new sunny day.

    Nice shoes by the way!

  45. Damn it has been awhile since I did the walk of shame at 630am. Something about going out when the sun goes down or is already down and coming out of that club/bar/house party and it is a new sunny day.

    Nice shoes by the way!

  46. Get rubber soles put on the shoes – you’ll be able to walk forever. That’s why I wear docksides for walking around town (without socks when it’s warm), and save my nice polished black leather shoes for show-off or dress-up or wastrelly gallavanting occasions.

  47. Get rubber soles put on the shoes – you’ll be able to walk forever. That’s why I wear docksides for walking around town (without socks when it’s warm), and save my nice polished black leather shoes for show-off or dress-up or wastrelly gallavanting occasions.

  48. Get rubber soles put on the shoes – you’ll be able to walk forever. That’s why I wear docksides for walking around town (without socks when it’s warm), and save my nice polished black leather shoes for show-off or dress-up or wastrelly gallavanting occasions.

  49. Get rubber soles put on the shoes – you’ll be able to walk forever. That’s why I wear docksides for walking around town (without socks when it’s warm), and save my nice polished black leather shoes for show-off or dress-up or wastrelly gallavanting occasions.

  50. Pingback: So Long, Sassy Shoes | Exile Lifestyle

  51. I’m practically laughing out loud. And I’m alone. Did you say they have SILVER SOLES? Motherfucker you cannot let those go. hahahahhaa I love your writing. Rock (or slide) on!

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