There was a time when Puma shoes were making a huge comeback and almost every girl I knew was wearing a pair of these shoes with the velcro straps. They weren’t ugly, by any means, but they were being over done. I guess the blessing in disguise here is that velcro doesn’t really tighten your shoes as well as laces (at least from my experience) and velcro was a lot easier to loosen than laces.
I had started seeing a girl named Summer, who I had ironically met in one of my summer classes in college. We got to know each when we were both late for class and had to sit together in the back. It really became easy after that as we talked a lot and before you knew it, we were seeing each other by the end of the week.
During one of my college classes, we sat in an auditorium where the rows of seating ascended the further you were from the professor. Being the terrible student I was, I would usually be sitting in the back with my group of friends since nothing really mattered in that class anyway.
On this occasion, one of my friends, Stephanie, decided to sit in on the lecture. She had a spare period and since she knew most of my friends (and the fact that we would goof off in class), she figured it would be a good way to kill time.
It was a warm autumn day, and surprisingly, it wasn’t raining, windy, or anything, just unseasonable warmth. Stephanie was wearing black boots with tight black jeans (tucked into her boots) and a fancy autumn jacket.
My friends and I occupied the last two rows on the far left side of the auditorium. I sat in the back row and since Stephanie knew me the best, she sat next to me. The rest of the group sat around us, or directly in front of us. And, as per usual, as the lecture wore on, we started finding ways to kill time. Our go-to was usually to play snake on our cell phones (remember that?) except with the layout of the auditorium, we weren’t able to connect via infrared for a multiplayer game.
Sometimes you get that premonition that something could happen. My premonitions almost always came at the expense of one of my friends experience shoe loss. It’s not much of a talent, but sometimes I could see the scenario playing out long before it actually happened.
On this occasion, a group of us were hanging out at the mall. There was one girl and about five guys (including myself). The girl, we’ll name her Lisa, had a crush on one of us. I wasn’t sure which one of us it was though. Lisa had a plan, but I don’t think she thought it out thoroughly.
Lisa started a game of Truth or Dare. The problem was, Lisa didn’t think we would all gang up on her.
“I’ll start,” Lisa said, “and then whoever I ask gets to choose next.”
The guys groaned but since we were just loitering on the streets, wandering as we looked for the next things to do, we begrudgingly accepted.
Jenny and I were movie buddies throughout our college years. We would watch all the big blockbusters together and whenever there was some indie film on that she was interested in, you better believe that I would be there.
Jenny had this habit of removing her shoes when she was in the movie theater. She would sit cross-legged most of the time, but if the theater was empty, she would extend her legs and rest them on the seat in front.
This routine never really caused any issues, except for one time. That one time was when Jenny was wearing a pair of Havaiana flip fops and sweat pants. It was early in the summer and the first major box office movie was released. Jenny and I decided to catch one of the first showings and the entire theater was packed.
Girls just want to have fun. And sometimes, they’re willing to do some of the most random things to have that fun. During university, I had a bad break-up and one of my friends decided to set me up on a date with one of her close friends. We’ll call her J. I didn’t know J at all, but she added me to Facebook and that’s really all we knew of each other.
We messaged each other a few times over the course of a week before we finally settled on a date for Saturday afternoon in the middle of autumn. She had family plans later in the evening so we compromised.
J was very attractive and very fashionable. Judging by the number of Facebook likes she got each time she updated her profile picture, I wasn’t the only one who felt that way.
J let me plan the date and I decided we should go ice skating. It was cliche, but it was an easy way to get close to someone, especially since I was comfortable with my own skating ability. J agreed as it was a short event and we could figure out if we wanted to do anything else after that.
I waited for J outside the arena on the cool autumn afternoon, I couldn’t help but think how lucky I was that it wasn’t raining outside. It was part of a massive community center that had a swimming pool, running track, library, and of course, the skating arena. As I waited outside, I couldn’t help but wonder how empty the area around the arena was, especially since it was a Saturday afternoon. At the very least, parents would be taking their kids out.
When J arrived, she was wearing a pair of camouflaged pants tucked into her beige tie-up ankle boots, a leather jacket and a tank top. She looked like something you would see on one of those outfit of the day videos or sites.
Charity was one of my high school friends. We got a lot closer when we got to university and wound up sharing the same free block to have lunch together everyday. Sometimes Ken would join us (from the Careful Who You Tease story) when he had time, or if he skipped classes. But most of the time, it was just Charity and I.
Charity was a very fashionable individual and she was always one of the best dressed girls that I knew. Blundstone boots were starting to become a thing and Charity was the first person to tell me about them. Now, the traditional Blundstone boots was a boring brown or black color, but Charity, being the fashionista that she was, bought a pair of red ones. I didn’t really care for the shoes, and to be honest, they were kind of ugly in my eyes, but who am I to judge fashion?
Socks. Socks used to be an afterthought for some. Now, both men and women, strive to have a decent sock collection. For my friend, Jamie, she had always avoided the plain world of white and black socks. The only time she wore those colours was when she playing sports.
Jamie and I shared a lot of classes in freshman year in university. That’s how we became close and that’s how I knew about her obsession on socks. Well maybe it was more my obsession that revealed itself to her. By that, I mean she caught me staring at her feet during class.
How Jamie caught me was because I was spacing out in class. This was common for me, and that probably explained why my grades weren’t up to par (but that’s a story for another time). I remember staring blankly ahead, but with my head slightly angled downward. The lecture auditorium was angled downward. Jamie, however, had worn her Adidas Superstars sneakers with slightly cropped jeans. Her legs were sticking in front of the table and I could see her purple ankle socks peeking through the edges of her sneakers. She moved her feet slightly and my eyes followed. Then she lifted her foot up, directly to my line of sight before she gently pushed me and broke my trance.