Saturday, July 24, 2010

A Peculiar Kind of Logic

Yesterday we pursued our normal Friday activities -- gym, and then errands. I ran a birthday card for Michelle in France into the post office; we hit the library and then on to the Hermosa Beach Farmer's market. Onward to the supermarket for shrimp; Richie wanted to make a new dish for dinner.

For once, we were having such glorious weather (SUN!) that I finally had to reach up and close the sun roof shade.

I needed to take one of my new shoes in to be stretched -- it pinched a little just at the widest part of my foot. (Note: never buy a pair of shoes online.) Ivy's down on Pier Avenue, HB, was gone, but Richie remembered another place up on Artesia.

He dropped me off in front of a modest doorway, gestured farther down the street and said, "I'll meet you there" and took off.

I opened the shoe man's door and waited patiently as the customer before me was treated. When it was my turn, I put the shoe on the counter, explained the problem and asked that it be stretched, "Just a quarter of an inch - that would be good."

Shoe guy (indeterminate age/nationality) looked up at me after examing the shoe and asked me something I've never been asked before -- "How much is it worth to you?"

I was dumbfounded. I stuttered, thinking out loud, "Well, I paid $80 for them and I can't wear them ... I tried to stretch it using my own foot; that didn't work ..." and trailed off into silence.

Shoe guy nodded to himself, and explained that the area to be stretched had to moistened, the stretcher slipped in, its setting adjusted and then the shoe had to "rest" in the stretcher for 36 hours. He never mentioned a price and I didn't volunteer one because I had no idea whatsoever how much shoe stretching should or could cost.

He scribbled my name and phone number on a slip, gave me a slip with the store name on it and said, "After 4 p.m. tomorrow." I grinned, said, "Great," and made my exit.

I could see Richie's car, parked at the curb down the block, but the car was empty and I knew why. Two doors down from the shoe shop is Bogey's Bar, a favorite watering hole of his. Sure enough, there he sat, pitcher of Stella in front of him and two glasses. I slid onto the bar stool next to him, we clinked mugs and I said, "Could you tell me why the hell we are having a beer at (quick glance at watch) 1:37 in the afternoon?"

He grinned and said, "Because you don't get a shoe stretched every day!"

No comments: