I bought some discounted red licorice at the Liquidation Center.
Now, I can afford to spring for some full priced red licorice. It’s not a financial stretch to do that right now.
But there’s something appealing about getting slightly out-of-date red licorice for pennies on the dollar.
I am so cheap.
Anyway…I had some of this red licorice with me out on the mail route. It was my way of treating myself….my cheap way of treating myself.
So I’m driving down the road, biting off hunks of licorice, enjoying myself immensely, when I thought, “Man…I’d trade my kingdom for a bunch of red licorice, some new hi-top black Converse All Stars, and some fresh guitar strings…”
When there’s nothing riding on a dumb trade, it’s easier to make it in my head.
A couple of weeks later, I was using the potty…and while I was sitting down and was a captive audience, I heard the door open.
My four-year old poked his head in the doorway and said, “We got you a surprise!”
My birthday was coming up in a week…so I tried to shut that revelation down quickly…
but before I could get him to stop, he told me that “we got you some black shoes!!! Like mine!!”
The cat was out of the bag.
I told him that we better try and keep it a surprise…but he was hard to shut down. It was exciting for him that I wanted shoes just like his little All Stars.
I didn’t talk about the shoes all that much before my birthday. I didn’t let on about my postal revelation out on the route…I didn’t spill the beans about how much I liked those shoes.
When I opened the box …and smelled that new Converse smell…and held them in my hands…and….
What a great birthday present!
The dream was still alive…and I didn’t even have to trade anything for them.
It was a good thing.
There’s something about those shoes…art school and scruffy well-worn Converse seemed to go together well…something about the memories that a pair of new All Stars bring back to me…relaxed and energetic and “creative” somehow…
Good. That’s what it’s all about….just good. Good and right.
Give me a pair of black hi-tops….some scruffy bib overalls….a fresh canvas…big windows and a bunch of paint….maybe some coffee…some good music on the stereo…
That sounds good to me…
I guess that what I’m saying is that to Jenny I’m sure those sneakers were just a nice replacement for my ratty old sneakers…but to me, they’re kind of an anchor line to some of my best memories and mindsets.
That’s a bargain if I can get a pair of shoes that have that many good memories tied up in them.
That’s a pretty great present…even if a little man busts open the bathroom door and gets so excited about the fun to come that he blurts out that a surprise is going to arrive soon.
Even if that happens, new shoes like that are a good thing for me.