Shoe store clerk: “Oh, we only sell shoes, not shoe accessories.”
When did laces become an accessory, an unnecessary decorative element? When and why were they banned from the shoe store? Is it more profitable to use the space to stock that spray-on protector stuff that saves leather footwear from everything: rain, fog, foot vapours and nasty sideways glances?
I feel slightly guilty when I lie to the clerk and tell them I’ve still got some of that stuff from the last time I bought shoes. I lied to that clerk too, and the one before them. I lie because I can’t tell the truth. I can’t tell the truth because I can’t handle the look. It’s the same look I get from my dentist when I tell him I’ve been too busy to floss.
15 years ago I did buy a bottle of spray protector, but it was for nubuck oxfords and I was too young to know better. The nubuck protector did not help. The achilles heel was the right sole; it split in half shortly after I broke in the shoes. I swore off shoe-store snake oil from then on. But if they ever develop a product that prevents me from stepping in something nasty, I’ll buy it.