M is in denial about the size of his feet. Always has been as far as I’ve known him, but yesterday it reached greater proportions ;o) We went on one of our jaunts into town, having run out of sandpaper and realised, belatedly, that there must be better implements than a scourer to remove old paint from window glass. So we hit Bunnings ugh and got all that, and then headed to the supermarket. It wasn’t the one we usually go to – and I had quite a religious experience (for someone who wasn’t baptised and speaks in tongues after too much gin).
Everything I mentioned that we needed to buy miraculously turned up in the next aisle that we entered. Again and again. This was a wonderful thing, because the last few times I’ve been shopping (M has wisely stayed in the car) it has taken me 15 minutes to find the rice, and ten solid minutes to locate the tinfoil (with the intent of baking all the fish I haven’t been catching). So this beam of supermarket luck made M and I quite perky – we looked at towels, sheets, bathmats, and finally… thongs. M has had a pair of sandals that he has worn every day since February and about three weeks ago, they began to disintegrate around him. I spotted these thongs for $1.50 and suggested that we get him a pair. M looked undecided. I pulled out a pair of size 12-13’s. He looked horrified.
“I can’t wear them! No one wears thongs that big! They just look stupid.”
I sighed. “But you’ve got size 12 feet. These are your size.”
He shook his head mutely.
I tried again. “M, you are six foot two – the size of your feet is appropriate for your height. You would look ridiculous with tiny ballet feet. Hello? [waving the thongs frantically as the aisle clears around us] M? You need to face the reality of your shoe size? Hello? What about these ones? See? They’re blue.”
M looks stubborn. Reaches for a pair of green 10-11’s.
“I’ll get these ones.”
“They won’t fit you.”
“I’m not wearing those other ones. They’re just stupidly big. I don’t want to flap around in stupidly big thongs.”
“They won’t fit you.”
I mentally tap my foot. M puts the green thongs into the basket. I shake my head.
We get home, feed the cats, put the shopping away, do a bit more work on the windows, get bitten by swarms of mosquitos and call it a day.
I place the green thongs on the floor. A symbol of the hopefulness of Generation X (M makes it into Generation X by one year.)
“OK. Try them on.” I wait.
M rips off their plastic tie and wiggles his toes into the left one. It’s immediately clear that it is not going to just slip on. He wiggles his toes harder. I bite my tongue. He grabs the thong and wedges his foot between the two bits of rubber. His foot looks anguished. His heel is over the back of the thong and on the floor. I shake my head. M looks crestfallen. I take my moment (as it has, after all, been handed to me on a platter). I speak slowly and clearly.
“M. You. Have. Big. Feet. Big Feet Are Good. You must stop denying your foot size. We are going to go back to the supermarket another day and get you thongs that will actually fit you. Big Feet are Good. They are in proportion to the rest of you.”
M looks humbled. Then I can see a thought flitting across his face. I already know what it’s going to be.
“It must be because I have an unfeasibly large – ”