Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Oh Grate! (a pun, not misspelling of the word "great." you'll get it if you read on.)

A few weeks ago, I went into this new store called Shoe Carnival figuring it sounded fun (Carnival!) and full of shoes (Shoe!); it's fun, and full of shoes, it's SHOE CARNIVAL!

Notsomuch. It scared me. It scared me quite a lot. I couldn't get three feet into the store before a "helpful" salesperson obnoxiously yelled to me, "HI! WELCOME TO SHOE CARNIVAL! WHAT CAN I HELP YOU FIND?"

Taken aback, I sort of said I didn't know, but if I did, I'd be sure to have them help me.

Rounding a set of shelves, I ran into another salesperson. "HI! WELCOME TO SHOE CARNIVAL! WHAT CAN I HELP YOU FIND?" I replied, "Yeah, still doing okay. I'll let you know though if I'm not..."

Frightened, I went to the boot section and tried on a few pairs. The prices were decent, and though the quality of shoe was mostly crap, I was pretty impressed by the cute styles. And if you're going to waste money on poorly-constructed, trendy footwear, it might as well be cheap, poorly-constructed, trendy footwear.

Now, remember this place was called Shoe Carnival? Every five minutes, an employee would get over the loud speaker, "WEEEEEEEEEELCOME TO SHOE CARNIVAL! THIS IS A REMINDER YOU HAVE JUST FIIIIIIIIVE MINUTES TO GET YOUR BUY ONE PAIR GET ONE PAIR HALF-OFF DEEEEEEEEAL. BUT FIRST! LET'S SPIN THE DEAL WHEEL!" Deal wheel?

"HI! ARE YOU STILL FINDING EVERYTHING AT SHOE CARNIVAL?!?" came up behind me, scaring me like the voice belonged to those two freaky twins in The Shining.

"AAAAAAAAAAHHHH! YES! I'M JUST LOOKING!!!" Shoe Carnival was loud. Shoe Carnival was scary. Shoe Carnival was a giant clown, ready to hold my hands behind my back and bite my throat with its long, pointy teeth.

Hurrying toward the discount racks in the back of the store, I found two pairs of totally uncomfortable, fairly cute, completely cheap shoes for $6 each. Several more loudspeaker announcements and $12 plus tax later, I left Shoe Carnival, screaming into the night.

Why do I talk about this? I got one of the shoes stuck in a grate outside my apartment tonight. I don't know how, but the heel got so tightly wedged down into the grate that I couldn't pull it out. I literally had to unbuckle the shoe off my foot and leave it while I took all the stuff I was carrying inside.

Half barefoot.

In the snow.

I finally got the shoe out of the grate, but not before taking a picture. Good thing the burgundy patent-leather Mary Jane was cheap, because I'm certainly not going back to freaky Shoe Carnival to replace it.