Tuesday, June 8, 2010

All fun and games until someone loses a zipper

Among the desirable objects one may find on any given shopping excursion, I firmly believe that the dressing room experience is not complete without also finding the most hideous thing to try on.

There are certain rules to the monstrosity which one might add to the ‘try-on’ pile:

1. The more sequins the better.
2. Any catsuit is an automatic must.
3. If the article of clothing would seem appropriate in your run of the mill Fresh Prince and Jazzy Jeff music video, it’s a winner.
4. Any thing that makes you laugh.

The last time I was at Nordstrom rack I came across a denim romper which
automatically qualifies under rule #2. It was a strapless, shorts masterpiece with a low riding belt. Beauty. I confirmed the necessity of trying it on with my shopping partner and she agreed whole-heartedly. She found a breathtaking sequined mini skirt to compliment my denim catsuit.

After rounding The Rack we took our finds into the dressing room. I awkwardly climbed into my denim jumpsuit and heard my friend giggle as she slid into her mini skirt. We opened our doors and had fun laughing at each others ridiculousness, twirling, and enjoying our ugly outfits.

The time came to return to my normal clothes and purchase what I had found (excluding my ugly catsuit). I reached up to the side zipper nestled snuggly in my armpit and tugged it downward.

The zipper refused to budge.

I tugged again.


I began to panic. The idea of being stuck in this abomination made my head spin. I was nauseous. Bordering hysteria, I pulled and pulled at the zipper.


I put my arm down, sore from pulling so hard. I leaned forward to take a breath, gathering my strength for the next fit of tugging.


Alarmed, I stood up and felt for the zipper. It was still there, obstinate and cruel. My fingers follwed the zipper down to my waist...I felt skin. The zipper had split down the middle.

I stared at myself in the mirror and tried to come up with a plan. I hated this catsuit, jumpsuit, romper, or whatever the hell it was. It was a stupid ritual to trying something this ugly on.

I had no other choice. It would just have to come off. I slowly began easing the suit down when...


The top of the zipper flew off it's resting place, ricocheted off the mirror, and flew somewhere on the other side of the dressing room. I quickly stepped out of the romper and back into my normal clothes. I hung the suit up, gathered the rest of the clothes and took them out of the dressing room.

"How did everything work out for you?" Asked the employee.

"Not too great." I replied. "I think there's something wrong with the zipper on that one." I motioned toward the catsuit and threw my pile of clothes at her before she could examine it too closely.

Red faced and full of shame, I left The Rack empty handed. I didn't want to buy anything anyway.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The grass so green, Skies so blue. Spectre is really great!

I am starting to get a little weirded out by the volume of random shoes dangling from various power lines. I don’t know if anyone else in the Salt Lake Valley has noticed, but the number of ownerless shoes strewn haphazardly on the power lines (or telephone cables) of Salt Lake City is on the rise. I guess I never recognized the cult ritual of ‘shoe slinging’ until Edward Bloom experienced the town Spectre in the movie Big Fish.

As quaint a tradition as it seemed in the movie, I can’t help being slightly annoyed by how ugly it is to see a pair of old sneakers hanging from power lines. Every street we drove on yesterday had at least one pair of shoes flying high from cables.

As I began writing this I did a small search online about shoe slinging and came across some very interesting articles, none offering a definitive explanation for such a spectacle. I quickly found out that I am unbelievably naïve. Apparently, popular beliefs attribute shoe slinging to gang activity, the announcement of the latest drug dealer, or a teen boy’s proclamation of becoming a man. Snopes.com suggests differently. Here I was, innocently thinking that people were dumb and liked abandoning their used shoes for all to see instead of donating them. My common reaction was to ‘tut, tut’ the former owners of the shoes for being wasteful individuals. Little did I know that the general public firmly believed that shoes from power lines were a beacon warning trouble for the neighborhood. Silly me.

Wikipedia tells us about “Shoefiti” which is prevalent all over the world with much of the same information Snopes.com has to offer. However, Wikipedia goes a step further to explain how a “Shoe Tree” is different from the act of shoe slinging—but fails to actually tell us explanations. Annoying.

Perhaps the most helpful site I found was straightdope.com which posted the question to the web and had readers answer the question.

So, this is what I have discovered today. I am more informed, less naïve, and still without a reason why people find it necessary to sling their dirty shoes up on the power lines. Thoughts?

For more information on 'Shoefiti' and how it might affect you, please follow this link: Shoefiti