Sometimes, you don’t realize what you’re missing until it slaps you in the face. And these days, with our lives so convoluted with wedding planning and the rest, we tend to lose track of the small things. My mom says Kanye West’s fault. I tend to disagree, though his new album has been taking up a lot of my time lately…
The point is, when the workloads are stressin’ you out, it’s easy to get distracted. We forget to take a moment to breath in the fresh air.
Thus, it was one of those weeks. Hours were long, demands were high, and I had this strong hunch that Casual Friday was about to turn into Casual Saturday, even carrying over into a “What the Flip?” Sunday. But since I’m no longer on the West Coast, the wife beater and track pants weren’t going to cut it.
I had to step up my game.
I walked into the office, strutting around in my finest Sunday attire, Gucci sneakers and all. “Hey… what’s going on guys?” I asked, stretching out and getting comfortable. “Yep… yep yep yep yep yep… Fine day to be in the office, wouldn’t you say? Ahh, sort of, just threw on whatever I could find, you know what I mean? Gee, Matt. Looks like you did the same, heheh. Didn’t even take the time to put on any socks—“ I stalled, my eyes locked on his feet. “Wait a minute. What are those??”
“Oh these things? Just, my loafers. I only wear them whenever I feel casual. 30 bucks at JC Penny’s…” On and on he went, as if they were just no big deal… on purpose, I presume. I couldn’t blame him. A total Gibson move, I know, trying to make me jealous and all. I’d have done the same if I were in his shoes (no pun intended).
Before setting my priorities for the day, I hopped on the net—time to research the perfect loafer. I needed a shoe I could easily slip on, something that didn’t draw too much attention; you know, the type of shoe you could walk into the local McDonalds without shame. But most importantly, I needed something I could rub in Matt’s face, for the right price too. “Ok, what do we have here. J Crew? Talk about boring… Michael Kors? I swear I saw a pair of those at Payless. Hmm… at least these Alligators look pretty cool. What else do they have—Whoa. Wha… what are these?”
My eyes lit up like a kid’s feasting his eyes on the Nintendo 64 on Christmas morning, or the smokin’ hot lifeguard with the sun outlining her silhouette, or Val Kilmer whenever he sees a cheeseburger.
They were… perhaps the most beautiful article of clothing I had ever seen in my entire life. The way the snake skin mellifluously scaled across the vamp, the attention to detail, from the tassels on the tongue to the little tiger roars on the heel…
My mind became consumed with illusions of grandeur. Walkin’ down the street, rocking the bleach blonde locks with a fine pair of shades, wheelin’ and dealin’ like a high flyin’, limousine ridin’ son of a gun! I was almost there.
And once I had these bad boys in my possession, I was honestly going to have a hard time holdin’ those alligators down!
It was the pair of shoes I was meant to wear.
And for a price of only 1,850 dollars, these puppies could all be mine! Nothing a paycheck or two couldn’t handle.
I scurried home from work that Sunday, barely able to contain my excitement. “Wait till the babe see’s what I have in store!” I knew she was going to love them, and she couldn’t wait for me to walk around the town, stylin’ and profilin’, makin’ all the heads turn! I’m talkin’ Jared Kushner, Sarah Huckabee-Sanders, anybody who’s anybody in DC! All those turkeys were going to shoot me a look of awe, mixed with a hint of jealousy!
I thought about it the entire way home. And when I say the entire way, I’m talkin’ the walk to the metro, the ride home, into the condo complex, up the elevator, through the door…
“Hey babe, how was your day?” I casually asked, anticipating a reactionary, “good, how are you?” All a setup for my grand scheme. That’s right, keep it cool. Don’t draw too much attention to yourself…
“Hey hun, we need to talk…” she said to me, in a somewhat somber tone. Ok. There better be good reason, like somebody dyin’ or something. I sat next to her on the couch and took a deep breath, awaiting the bad news.
“So, there are a few purses on sale, and they’re really nice.”
Purses? You sat me down for purses? Don’t you see that I have something more important on my mind?! A lesser man would’ve say it. However, as for me, I kept my composure and listened.
“So, this one is a Chanel…”
My mind suddenly became scattered. Chanel??? What the hell’s a “Chanel?”
“It’s a very rare purse, and it’s one that I’ve been keeping my eye on for a really long time. Now it’s on sale, for a really good price too. And to be honest, I don’t think I’ll ever see this for this price ever again. But the best part is, I have credit on this site, so it’s only going to cost me around 200 dollars! Isn’t that great?”
I took a moment to gather my thoughts. “But babe, you already have tons of purses. Do you really think buying another purse is the wisest choice right now?”
…Look, I’m a little new to this whole “getting married” thing. It’s my first time, and heck, there’s a good chance it’s going to be my last! So, there may be a few things I need to learn about relationships, or whatever.
And apparently, it’s a really bad idea to tell your babe that she shouldn’t buy a Chanel purse.
But really, what’s the big deal? I loved her before the purse, and it wasn’t like I fell in love with her because she had a couple fancy ones before. To be brutally honest, I never really paid that much attention to her purses in the first place. And every time I tried to explain all that to her, the situation just got worse and worse!
I just couldn’t understand it! I mean, am I wrong? Is another purse really all that necessary? We have to save for a wedding for heaven’s sake, and we’re talkin’ bout purses?
Nope! Not worth it. Plenty of other ways to spend our money. And the worst part was, by the end of the night, we got so worked up, that I didn’t even have a chance to bring up the pyth—
…Ohhh crap. The pythons…
I couldn’t sleep. Couldn’t concentrate the next morning. A cloud of guilt followed me around work the next day, lasting long into the evening. How could I seriously look her in the eye and tell her I’m going to buy an $1,850 pair of pythons?
Yes… Howwas the burning question of the moment. I had absolutely every intention of informing her of my pending purchase. I just needed a little help crafting my pitch. I needed a little advice from my friend Jack.
A veteran of the military, you could count on finding Jack at the local bar after work, sending you a friendly hello while you walk past on any given day. Every now and then, I’d stop by for a drink and a little BBQ, and each time, I’d be greeted with a handshake, smile, and a swath of knowledge on hand. Jack was a man—distinguished, wise, and most importantly, gay. If there was anybody who I could trust with such a sensitive topic, it was him.
I walked into Willies that afternoon, and as predicted, there was Jack, as if he already knew I was on my way, having prescient knowledge of the situation at hand. “Hello, young Zack,” he said to me, sticking out his hand for a hearty shake.
“Hello, Jack,” I replied, honoring my half of the shake before getting down to business. “I need some advice.” He leaned in, ready for me to pour my heart out. “My girl and I got in a fight yesterday. She wants to buy this purse, but I told her I thought it was a little expensive—“
“Oh, let her buy the purse!” He shot back, wasting no time with his response. “Don’t be such a prude!”
“If it makes her happy, then give it to her! You can’t be such a drag about that type of stuff…” He shook his head, lifting his cocktail towards his mouth and taking a sip. “I like you, but you have a lot to learn, young Zack… a lot to learn…”
The admonishing continued, but his word was final. So, I accepted the chastisement, and began crafting a new message. I now knew what I needed to say.
“Hi babe, I’ve given it some thought, and I want you to buy the purse. In fact, I’m going to send you some money to help pay for it.” I pressed send on the messenger app and awaited the response. There was no way she could say no to the pythons now. Man, I can almost feel them gripping my feet…
“Oh babe, you’re so sweet,” She messaged back. Alright. So far, so good… “But I’ve really been thinking about what you said, and now that we’re getting married, we really should be thinking about our finances. So, I’m not going to get the purse any longer.”
Wait, what? No! This is not how it’s supposed to go! I scurried up a new text. “But babe, you deserve a new purse! I want you to have it. I was actually thinking about how I needed to get a new pair of shoes myself, so you should get the purse.”
“Oh, that’s great hun! I’ll tell you what. We can go to the mall next week and find you a pair. I have a few stores in mind.”
“Actually, I was thinking about getting a pair online. I can show you when I get home.”
“No need. I want to take you to the Galleria at Tyson’s corner anyways. It’s amazing. They have so many stores. And the food court is really fancy…”
I stared helplessly into my phone, as if were watching my dreams fade away with each passing text. I’ll never get my pythons at this pace…
A week later, we found ourselves at the Galleria. Sure, they had a few good picks that were up my alley, and on most days, I would’ve easily splurged on a flashy pair of sneakers, but I just couldn’t get the Pythons out of my head. Nothing I saw seemed right.
At the end of the day, I settled for a bland pair of loafers, big whoop. Nothing fancy, even for $120 bones. But they’ll have to do. We’re on a budget after all…
I at least got my old pair of Gucci’s fixed up. They served me well these last few years, and I guess they’ll have to get me through at least one more season.
This isn’t the end however. Far from it. The dream of Ric Flair lives on. And one day, I’ll have my Python Tassel Loafers. And when that day comes, look out. Cause I’m going to have a hard time keeping those pythons down!