Jan 16, 2011

Head over Heels.

As much as I love a good long day in a pair of smart heels, and friends, I truly do, it is at moments like these that I am thankful that I am not required to type with my feet.

Yes, from thigh-top to toe-tip, the legs are experiencing what Diana Ross might have called sweet love hangover. Noticing these sensations on my first tentative, padded steps out of bed this morning, and being of a curious disposition, I did in fact conduct a little research on leg musculature. It pleased me greatly to learn that the longish muscle that endows the upper regions of the thigh with its superabundance of fleshy, curvy, callipygian appeal is actually known (to people who did not drink themselves rotten in their freshman year and made it into med school) as the Sartorius.

This pleases me in part because knowing a new thing is good, but more because Sartorius is just an errant spellcheck away from sartorial. If I have a sartorial signature, it is brazen display of Sartorius. Irony walks with me.

I have not witnessed many sartorial or Sartorius displays recently. Three inches of snow in Atlanta last Sunday melted well enough on Tuesday that overnight temperatures seriously below freezing turned our roads into treacherous rinks by Wednesday. On these rinks cars more or less behaved like 7 year olds playing hockey, flailing about in blind mass pursuit of a puck, careering here and there, spinning out and taking the innocent down with them in a knotted mass of shrieking earnest futility. I stayed out of the dangerous game entirely.

Chez Bellejambes was well provisioned, lots of food and drink, an ample cache of aloe infused bathroom rolls and plenty to read. We weathered well. Cabin fever had well and truly set in by weeks end though. Yesterday therefore, I was quite delighted to brazenly bestir myself, emerging from the ice cocoon to take pretty wing in Petra mode for the opening planning session of Southern Comfort Conference 2011.

I plan on haranguing you quite regularly here about your schedule and intentions for September. You really ought to start putting a shekel or two aside here and there. Maybe fight the odd shopping impulse too. If you do these things then the expense of coming to Atlanta and spending a few days or more in the company of so much smart, beautiful, liberated diversity will be more manageable. I implore you, if you have not been able to attend a conference that caters to the CD/TG set to do so. It is an expense though, and we do live in challenging times. I get that. If you are thusly challenged, let me encourage you to visit this page and note that there are scholarships available. You may be in a financial position to qualify for support. Don’t be shy. Don’t be proud. Don’t stay locked within yourself. ‘Nuff said on the matter. Head on down to Atlanta.

But back to heels now which is where I started after all. In the evening I happily pried my tootsies into the purple pump referred to in the post directly prior to this one. The morning wardrobe was perched upon newly acquired and long sought black suede (ok suede-ish) booties purloined from Macy’s for a very faint song. Too embarrassed to say the price really. Well that moment passed quickly enough. $24.00. The purchase pathology is kind of interesting to me though, and I want to share it with you out of a sense of care for your financial well being (which ties back neatly to the whole SCC attendance thing … see how I did that?).

This particular look has been in my gun sites for some time now. A versatile autumn / winter style, matches well with the legging / tunic look, skinny jeans, opaque tights / tailored skirt ensembles. In short, while not an absolute need, this is a shoe that has been more than a want. And on a half dozen sorties through a variety of shops, Nordstrom Rack, Ann Taylor, and DSW included I tried on and discarded stacks of paired suitors like a high maintenance Disney princess. This one pinched, that one swam. This one too tall, that one too low. Too round at the toe there, not sure about that platform. Thwarted time and again.

I kept at the objective though and, finally, finding them just before Christmas, was relieved greatly. As is my habit, I updated my purchase tracking spreadsheet and noticed with no small alarm that these were pair #10. I had unknowingly perched myself on an irretrievably steep slope.

A couple of years ago I polled readers to determine just how many pairs of shoes we possessed. The analysis kicked out a behavioral singularity that graphically displayed a gradual erosion of will between pairs # Five and 10. Past the 10 Threshold and basically one is left only with bilateral amputation, bunions, or bankruptcy as a brake against the desire for more and more shoes. There are zombies amongst us. Take a look around you next time you are shoe shopping. They cannot count how many shoes they own. Or rather, how many shoes they are owned by.

What havoc hath I wrought, what a fool am I. Even with the clear foreknowledge, with certain statistical indicators of a ruined future, my guard dropped, and I blithely stepped past the pointed-toe point of no return. I had barely made a mental note of # 9 only a week or so earlier, the lavish lace classic court shoe from Ann Taylor marked down from $180 to a mere $48, so blind to the charms I have become.

Enough heels. It is time for healing now. Time to mind myself and stop with the shoes for a while. You may think this a fools errand, and you might be right. I feel however that no honest exploration of ones fuller gender complexion is complete without battling against the pretty tide of shoe lust. Pictures at 11 of course. And 12. And beyond.

On a more serious note, a couple of words about the SCC planning session and evening social follow. I made some new friends, people with dazzling lives and minds, diverse interests, abundant charm and beauty. There was time as well with friends that I have met now 3, 5, or 8 times here and there. These acquaintances become more easy and meaningful each time too. The slow sedimentary process of trust building takes time, takes patience. Precious things with a commensurate payoff. A payoff available in the living, breathing company of people. People gotta meet.

There was a very pleasant surprise seeing about 60 people showing up at 9:00 am on a weekend to indicate willingness to help execute this big complex undertaking. And it was comforting to see Lexi, Blake, Lida, Christy and the rest of the board and committee chairs leading the charge. I encourage you to save the date: Sept 21 – 25. Start planning would you? And if you have figured out how to save yourself from the syren call of the shoe shop, drop a line would you?


Anonymous said...

No help on the shoe front, darling - my collection runs well past the point of no return.

I have every intention of being in Atlanta come September. Timing looks to work a bit better than last year.

Lynn Jones said...

Wise move to stay in during the Big Freeze - even if it did threaten to 'do your nut in'. Sometimes discression - and a warm duvet + hot tea, is the better part of valour. :-)

Shoes? Shoes indeed. They are tempting little things aren't they. They vary carefully around a theme and yet, with such a small tweak, last year's style is this year's must have.

Couture Carrie said...

Amazing shoe selections, darling Petra!


Kirsten said...

Petra, I would love to have your shoe collection! I've only just begun to develop mine and my fashion sense in general. Your own sense of fashion is something to aspire to :) As far as the SCC goes I wish I could find my way to that, but a 1500 mile trip and short funds of make that a very slim possibility, maybe someday though!



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