And right now my feet are completely naked

As soon as I get home from work, I kick off my pinchy flats or wobbly heels. If I’m heading straight out to the store, I may not change out of my skirt or slacks (unless I’m having a bad pants day – way worse than a bad hair day. I’ve had some eight-hour wedgies I’d like to put behind me.) but I will always change my shoes. Though I look disjointed (like one of those block puzzles where you spin the body parts till they match, or not), I fly out the door in my smelly sandals and stylish skirt (and hopefully shaved shanks) in search of soy milk. (This awful alliterative address goes out to Audrey.)

You’ll noticed I haven’t blogged here much lately. Here’s why: since my
Deep Cleanser poem appeared in 17,000 homes across the country with this blog address attached, this blog, which hithertofore felt personal, is now inextricably linked to my life as a professional obituary editor/news writer/polite email sender for the MB Herald.

I wanted to show up here every week in my stinky sandals (or better yet: fuzzy slippers), but now I feel I gotta wear heels.

I already do a lot of high-heeled writing, and I enjoy it. I get to connect with people and put my best foot forward. But when I write about my own life, it’s a lot more earthy (bordering on corny). Can I really talk about wedgies or men’s underwear (see June 12 post “The genre question”) in a blog that all the MB Herald’s dear grannies and exegetical neck-tied preachers might be reading?

Other blogs by current or former conference staff are very theological, political, or ecological – literary and thoughtful. They don’t need mice, it seems, to chew through their writer’s block. They have opinions and words on important issues and don’t naturally leak lame puns. That’s nice for them: mice are messy!

I’m far more at peace than I used to be with the fact that both strappy, silver heels and brown Earth-Spirit shoes fit me. There isn’t a dichotomy between the Hamish X and the Cheese Factory -reading Angeline and the Confession of Faith-reading one. (My faith informs my understanding of cheese pirates and world-dominating robots, and so should yours.) The fact that I’ve spent my share of “earthy” nights cleaning up vomit-river hallways or dancing like an Egyptian robot (entertainment-flooded kids need something visually-intriguing to keep them in their seats around the table long enough to take in their share of nutrients), in no way diminishes my ability to craft a professional news story. I’m okay with being all of that, but is it okay to show it here?

Contrary to the purpose of this blog, wondering about it is cramping my creativity.

My own Mennonite Brethren grannies and pastors have had a sense of humour. (My pastor for the past decade has always had nice footwear, but you should see his hats!) Hopefully, the nice church secretaries who send me baptism photos at the office aren’t put off by the beyond-the-weather comments I make here. I imagine many of them go home to their own sandal/slipper-step-around-the-vomit lives.

I’m just someone who’s (occasionally) brave enough to write about it.

1 thought on “And right now my feet are completely naked

  1. Long live messy mice and Earth Spirit shoes! (I have a pair too!) Your sort of writing shows those “always have something to say,” suit and tie neatly pressed, theological/ecological/political/literary types that you can be those things and be honest about the real life in the trenches too. And have a sense of humour to boot. Thanks for keeping it real!

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