A Short One about a River and an Ugly Pair of Shoes

by Chris McGinty of AccordingToWhim.com

I originally set out to write one
post about hanging out in the water during the summertime. As I told the tales
of just hanging out at the lake, I realized that I would need to do multiple posts. I write long posts. I wrote a short post about brainstorming that some
readers might consider right on the edge of becoming a bit long, and then
thought to myself, “That post was really short. I need to expand on it.” So
when I realized that the hanging out in the water post was starting to feel
long by my measure, I knew that I needed to break things up a bit. This left me
with three concepts; discussions of lakes, discussions of rivers, and
discussions of swimming pools. I just don’t have much to say about rivers.

OMG, Chris, get to the point
When I lived in Rancho Cordova,
California (near Sacramento), there was a river in walking distance, which was
good for those of us who weren’t driving yet. I had a friend named Scott who I
hung out with all the time in those days. We watched a lot of MTV and played a
lot of Nintendo. It was the late 80s. We also would take the bus to go to
record shops, and lots of fun stuff. Eventually, he bought a truck, but before
then we bussed or walked. I’m not sure why he didn’t have a truck prior to
that, given that he was in his 20s.

I have two memories of the river
that happened the same day. One was that we decided to swim from one side to
the other. We both made it, but I know that years later when the concept was
presented to me that people could just reach a breaking point and not have the strength
to keep going, I remember swimming across the river. I was super tired when we
got across. There were some people on the other side and they pulled Scott up and
handed him a beer. He was in his 20s after all. I was only almost sixteen, so no
one handed me a beer. It’s ok. I don’t like beer. No big deal. But you don’t
have any soda? No bottled wat… nevermind, bottled water wasn’t really a thing
back then. It existed. It just wasn’t really a thing. But still, no soda?
The second memory is that we were
on a boat. The current of the river had taken us down the river as we swam, as
it had taken us about ten minutes to swim across. We caught a ride with someone
on their boat back to our friends.
At the time, I owned these
horrible white tennis shoes that had purple leopard print. I was a teenager, so
this was the kind of thing that caused a fight with my mom. She was given the
shoes by someone, and unfortunately they fit me. She wouldn’t buy me a
different pair of shoes, because those were just fine. I wore them for months,
but I bitched about them the whole time.
When the boat dropped us off with
our friends, I grabbed my shoes, and set them down on the boat and said goodbye
to those horrible leopard printed things as they departed. I mentioned to Scott
about two minutes later that they were on the other boat, and that we should go
after them. This wasn’t possible, of course.
I suffered for this, because I
had to walk from the river to my house barefoot. I spent the whole time looking
for shade to run to, and grass to walk across. Scott was not too amused. Well,
he was amused that I was going to have blisters, but aside from that Scott was not
amused. My mom was not amused either. She did have to take me the next day to
get shoes though. So mission accomplished.
Chris McGinty is a blogger who
hasn’t really had much luck with tennis shoes. While crowd surfing at Edgefest ‘93
during the Pop Poppins performance, he went off the edge of the crowd. He
miraculously landed on his feet, but as he ran forward a bit to avoid falling
flat on his face, someone stepped on the heel of his shoe and it came off,
never to be seen again. Later while getting into a mosh pit at a Tripping Daisy
show, he split one of the tennis shoes he owned at that time, and then he was
ejected from the club for being involved in the mosh pit that destroyed his
shoe. He now wears black work boots. As far as style and durability, he is much
happier. This blurb may have been longer than the post…

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