Posts Tagged ‘shoes’

A Visit

So the parental units came a visiting from Montreal. They were waiting for us in the hotel lobby when we got off work. We shook hands hugged and kissed and agreed that we all looked wonderful. Then we had to ask the big question, where to go for dinner! While this may seem trivial in most families it is a serious issue in mine. We decided that we would take the conversation up to the hotel room because it was just too big of a decision to make sitting in the lobby.

And then the fun began.

The four of us, my mother, father, wife and myself packed ourselves into the tiny elevator to make the journey to the third floor. Before the elevator doors closed my mother looks at my father, “Phil, you left my purse in the lobby!” She runs out of the elevator while my father tries to hold the doors open leaving my wife and I wondering when it became my fathers job to keep track of my mothers purse.

Finally we are all in the elevator with all our belongings, the doors shut, my wife and I on one side, my father and mother on the other. My father at the controls. We engage in the usual chatter about the drive up the unusual amount of rain and just as I’m thinking that we are in a very slow elevator my wife says to my dad, “did ya happen to push the button?” We all had a good laugh and my father sheepishly pushed the button and like magic the elevator began to rise.

My mother looks at me and says, “I smell a blog coming” I looked at the floor, chuckled and as I looked down it struck me, my father and I were wearing the exact same shoes.

Read Full Post »

I’m not a fan of bowling.  When I was just a wee boy my friend had a bowling birthday party.  I cannot remember if it was Brahm or Robert, what I do remember is that two prizes were awarded, one for the best score and one for the worst.  I did win a prize that day.  

The last time I was bowling was in Vancouver with my friends Tony and Penney and the reasons why I don’t like bowling came flooding back.  In no particular order:

1)      I don’t like having to rent shoes, especially clown shoes to play a sport. 

2)      I worry my fingers are going to get stuck in the ball.

3)      Just like I can’t stop worrying about the person who wore the clown shoes before me, I can’t stop worrying about the person’s fingers that were in the ball before me.

4)       When I get to the foul line I find that either my foot placement is wrong or I’m not ready to release the ball. 

5)      The scores are automatically calculated and appear on the wall where everyone can see.  I really do not need to have to pay to be humiliated.  My crappy scores are private thank you very much.

6)      Bowling, like most sports goes against my basic credo:  Sitting is better than standing, lying down is better than sitting.

7)      Did I mention the clown shoes?

One summer in the late 1990’s in Vancouver Tony called me up and asks if I want to go rollerblading with him and his wife Penney.

Me:  I’ve never been on roller blades, have you?

Tony: No.

Me: Has Penney

Tony: No

Me: Sure

Tony: How about we meet at your place in about half an hour.

I learned a life lesson that day.  Being able to stop is almost, if not even more important than learning how to go.  Now I work in a warehouse and that lesson still holds true, before you pick up a box you had better know where you are going to put it down.  In short, you always need an exit strategy.

We got to Stanley Park, found a place to rent the blades and once again I had to deal with renting ‘shoes’ it took all my strength but I managed to ignore the imaginary legionares disease crawling up my legs.  in very short order we were able to stand and move forward providing we stayed on level ground. The issue of stopping would soon rear its ugly head.

There was a ‘medic/security/park employee standing at the top of a short, steep, sudden downward slope.  As other rollerblader’s approached this spot he would ask them if they needed help getting down this ‘obstacle’.  I really wanted to say yes.  But nobody else took him up on his offer.  Penney who became our leader declined his help as did Tony, like a sheep to the slaughter I followed the crowd.  We all made it and agreed a short break was in order.

Well rested and back on our wheels we pressed on.  We came to another steep downward slope, not as bad as the previous one but it kept going for some time before it leveled out. I tried to warn Tony not to stop by rolling onto the grass as was his habit.  I knew at speed that the ‘sudden grass stop’ could be a bone breaker.  Penney went first, in seconds she was flying and seemed to be having a good time.  I jumped next I wasn’t having such a great time, I am not an adrenaline junky I didn’t like my lack of control and for the life of me I didn’t know how I was going to stop if I needed too.  Tony was right on my heels.  We were moving pretty quick, Penney was almost at the bottom of the slope, I turned my head to check on Tony, he was heading for the grass, I heard his yelp the last I saw of Tony were the wheels of his roller blades partially hidden by a bush. 

Despite my concern for him I started to laugh.   Through the tears of my hysterical laughter I saw Penney sitting on the grass waiting for us. Finally I was moving slowly enough I could use the ‘sudden grass stop’ method.  I ended up beside Penney, I was laughing so hard I couldn’t stop.  To my defense the laughter was not all about Tony most of it was tension release, flying Tony was just the trigger.

“Where is my husband?” Penney asked.  All I could do was point to the bush.  Penny while clearly worried also started to laugh, only she was laughing because I was hysterical, she was looking at the direction I was pointing but didn’t see Tony.  “Brian, where is Tony” at which point Tony crawled out from behind the bush and started to remove his roller blades which of course started another wave of laughter from both Penney and myself. 

To this day I can still hear the noise Tony made as he flew into the bushes, I can still see Penney as a blurry form in front of me as I found here through my tears of laughter.  And since that day I have not participated in an activity where I’ve had to rent shoes.

Read Full Post »

Plinky asks, ‘What was the worst teacher you ever had and why?’

Easy, Mrs. Wilson 1st grade, the woman was a bitch!  If anyone stept out of line, and by stepped out of line I mean, sneezed at the wrong time, the whole class stayed after school.  The only time the entire class did not have detention was the day Neil Armstrong walked on the moon.  She was kind enough to let us go home and watch that on the news. 

If you got new shoes she would make you parade around the room and sing the song, ‘New shoes, new shoes, happy goody new shoes’  Whenever anybody got new shoes we would make sure to scuff them up before we got to class.

My brother had her as a teacher, he is three years older than me.  My cousin Erwin who is almost 20 yrs older than me also had Mrs. Wilson as his grade one teacher, and he told me she was in her 60’s when he was in her class, and yes she was just as bad.

Second worst teacher was (Rich I know you know who this one is) Mrs. Vogel.  She was a french teacher who couldn’t speak french.  I figured out how to pass her class I used a purple pen.  The only other way was, (if you are a guy) to wear tight purple pants. In my final year of highschool I also found out she liked jade, (the gem stone) I learned this by listening into her conversations with the girls about shopping.  So at one point I mentioned jade was my birthstone, (it really is the Opal) but she believed me and when it came time for the final exam I passed and all I had to do was describe what was going on in a picture she showed me.  It was a picture of a boy playing with a ball,  My description, “le garcon, avec un ball” I passed.  It so happened Richard was next in line.  While he was waiting outside the classroom she told him not to bother as she wasn’t going to pass him anyway.  Richard speaks more french than I do, (well he went to french immersion for a year so I figure he must, although I’ve never heard him speak french).

Mrs Vogel did once tell me to write lines for talking in class.  I had to write “I will not talk in class” 500 times and I had to have the lines on her desk the next morning.  I didn’t do it, when I went to her class she told me I had to now write 1000 lines.  I explained to her that if I didn’t write 500 lines what would make her think I would write 1000 lines?  I didn’t hear anything about it after that.

So Mrs Wilson was the worst because I believe she scarred me for life and to this day I can’t have a pair of shoes for an hour without somehow getting a smudge or something on them.  Mrs Vogel second in line cause she was just one of those pathetic teachers who was clearly wasting her time waiting for her retirement.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: