Wednesday, June 25, 2008

New Shoes

My new job at Leikin Volvo requires a lot of foot work — either standing or walking. So, when my feet began to tell me it was time for new shoes, I decided to get something that would be both comfortable and durable. But what type of shoe would be best for a car salesman? To answer that question I went to the answer man himself. I won't mention any names, but his initials are G--- S--------.

G--- told me that he was happy with his square toed Rockports and that he had purchased them on sale for $80. Now I don't know about you, but the last time I purchased shoes, they came from Gabriel Brothers and cost a mere $40. That seemed like a fair price back then. But I trusted G---'s opinion. Hey, if he knew how many cubic inches of space were in the back of a Volvo SUV, I just knew I could trust his advice on shoes.

So, last Saturday after work, I decided to search the mall in Mentor for a new pair of dress shoes. I thought I had found a great deal at one store when they advertized Rockport dress shoes for $19. But after opening the box, I could tell why the price was so low. They looked like maroon canoes — appropriate for water skiing but not for me. I eventually wandered over to Macy's where I purchased a pair of black Rockports for close to $95. Rockport has been known for comfort and quality for a long time. Plus, G---'s words were still ringing in my ears. "These are the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn!" So, I bought them.

Three days later, I returned the shoes. My left foot was hurting so bad that even an insert didn't relieve the pressure. The salesman kindly allowed me to return the shoe despite the wear on the bottom of the shoes. But what was I to do for shoes? My next visit took me to a place called Tiknor's. They sell dress clothes for men and also stock ten or twelve dress shoes. The first pair I tried on were immensely better than the Rockports. They were so good that I almost bought them on the spot. The only problem was the price: $110 plus tax! Yikes!

I decided to look around to see if there was something cheaper. You know how it goes. Paying $110 might give you a comfortable shoe, but how long would they last in the business? Six months? I wasn't quite sure whether it would be worth being comfortable at $220 a year or even more. So, I ended up searching the mall again. Believe it or not, I ended up purchasing a pair of leather slip-on shoes for $26 at Payless Shoe Store. They are actually fairly comfortable and to make things even better, I got a second pair for $13 more. Not bad. Not bad.

So, I guess the moral of the story is pretty obvious: You can't believe everything you hear from a car salesman.


EggsnGrits said...

Andy: eBay is your friend. Tons of name-brand shoes are virtually discarded from stores each year once stock gets low. Opportunistic people then put these on eBay and make a profit selling brand-new shoes for 20-50% of new prices. Great!!

Andy Rupert said...

It may work for you, Eggs. But every time I put my foot up to the monitor, the shoe is never the right size!

Miq-Tak said...

It's totally counterintuitive, but the less shoe, the better.

I got a pair of Fivefingers after reading this--I can be on concrete all day without any discomfort. It's weird.

Andy Rupert said...

The article you referenced made a lot of sense. We ought to work with the foot's design rather than against it. This is just another clue that man knows so much less than his Creator.