“You need to see the shoe doctor,” the man said in a constricted voice.  “Have you been to see the shoe doctor? You need to go,” he insisted.

“I heard you, Chris.   I have not been to the shoe doctor, but thanks for your concern.”

He shook his head in disapproval and clenched his jaw.  This conversation, like so many others, was upsetting to him.

I looked down at the scuffed brown loafers on my feet; the penny slots were void of their currency, not worth the metal.   The shoes have solid rubber soles attached in all areas, free of holes and unpleasant smells.  Good shoes in all respects aside from their esthetic value in which they were sorely lacking.

He was right.  As much as I hated to admit it, maybe it was time for some professional help.

Somehow, my style sense had retrograded into a full blown social services look.  Ankle length khaki pants, sensible shoes, a variety of shirts and sweaters salvaged from consignment stores or the Goodwill are what I regularly modeled down the “runway” (hallway with dirty, stained carpet and bright fluorescent lights that flicker and illuminate the water damage overhead) of the non-profit where I work.  True to its classification, it is a place of much work and no profit.

Perhaps a contributing factor to the wardrobe crisis of 2016?

It is a sacrifice that I gladly make as the work gives so much more; the work gives me meaning and purpose at the cost of style, travel, and fancy furniture; the work gives me the opportunity to do something that matters and only asks for all of my time, energy and earning potential in return.

Gladly, I say with all seriousness to myself.

I write out a sticky note, “Take shoes to doctor.”

I show Chris who nods and leaves with a reverse threat.

“You won’t be sorry.”

Again, I think he’s right.

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