Jack TenneyExtra Point

by Jack Tenney, Publisher

October 2012

Seasons change and so do shoes.

A friend recounted his early dating days when he struck just the right chord with a new girl. She really liked to ski. Did he?

“Oh, my gosh, yes!” he swore.

“What kind of boots do you own?” she asked.

“People own ski boots?” he wondered.

When, if ever, did it occur to you that serious bowlers had their own shoes? And, later — much later — did you wonder what else you might do while wearing bowling shoes? 

I remember as a kid wearing high-top black sneakers with useless ankle bone protectors for baseball and calling them tennis shoes. Of course, by the time I was 10 or 11 I got spikes to replace suction cups — had to.

Hiking boots work, sort of, year-round, though you really should replace your outdoor, clay-caked Nikes to start the indoor tennis season.

For sure, you will now put away the felt-bottom waders you wore last spring to not catch trout.

Imagine being a Canadian. How many pair of curling shoes would you go through? What wears out? Bottoms? Doubtful. Top of the right or left toe? Maybe.

Flip-flops, Tevas, serious sandals — they’re not free, you know. Don’t just gun them in a pile somewhere. Match them up; maybe use a couple of old boxes to store them. One golf shoe box can typically store all your strapped footwear safely and efficiently for the winter.

Dress shoes — does anyone still call them that?  Wouldn’t hurt to look them over and consider replacements, polishing, shoehorning, cloth bagging to be ready for church, formal events, whatever.

You know how much you’re supposed to learn walking a mile in another person’s moccasins? Seriously, think about the miles you’ve logged in your old wingtips, cordovans, lace-ups, and loafers. Learn anything? Weed and feed, my friend. 

Think about it: Closet space isn’t infinite, you know. 

By the way, keep at least one pair of golf shoes handy, maybe in the bag, just in case there’s one round left before the snows. And it’s not impossible that urgent business matters will force you to fly south somewhere. With bag fees what they are, you can rent clubs if you have to, but I can’t imagine renting golf shoes, so take your own. Maybe do a little like Fred Couples — no socks, and use boat shoes — easier to pack and will encourage trading rhythm for rage.

You don’t know what I’m talking about? What are you wearing? Crocs? Doc Martins? White bucks? Earth shoes? Bruno Magli?

Get with it, the season is changing.