So it’s been a big weekend for my superficial vanity.
Well, let me back it up a little bit. first of all, I like stuff. It has taken me many years to accept that I will never live an easily packable, ascetic lifestyle, but I am old enough to own it now. The inside of my brain looks like a junkshop most of the time, and unfortunately my surroundings often look much the same. However, that being said, I don’t often get a real attachment to a lot of the stuff I have; I read the ‘what would you take from your burning house?’ questions in magazines and think “hmm… my sister?” However, that being said, it does so happen that on occasion I fall happily, deeply in love with something I own that it becomes entwined with my memories. Usually, this is not the thing I would expect. The magpie in me has fallen in love with shiny showy things like shoes (my ‘magic shoes’ still travel in their box) pretty jewelry and dresses, and yet these are never the thing that cause tears to spring to my eye when I ponder losing them.
These things tend to be utilitarian things, boring to look at but so perfectly suited to their task that I cannot fathom ever finding one better. They sneak up on me, worming their ways into my hearts with their quiet support, their rarity, and their general awesomeness. My Frye boots, beaten up into submission and worn to perfection, are among these, but they are replaceable, so they don’t make the pantheon. My perfect tee shirt bra from Elle MacPherson is another, but it’s not entirely dead yet, so I would prefer not to have to think about the fact that it is no longer made. A giant silver woven-leather bad that I got in the basement of a market in Korea is starting to fray, and I’d prefer not to think about that either.
This weekend, I faced a serious bump in the road with my second pair of Fryes, which have the perfect practical walkable cute heel, the perfect slouchy high-quality leather, the perfect tan patina. And, since they were only made one season, they are not, like my other Fryes, replaceable. Thus, I take care of them. So, having moved back to the Upper West Side, I took them a few days ago to have their plastic heel nib replaced (if you don’t do this regularly, it will wear down the heel). Long story short, imagine my horror when the shoe guys decided that instead of ‘replace the heel nib’, I clearly had meant ‘replace the heel nib and paint the beautifully toned, expensive-looking tan leather striped heel with DARK BROWN PAINT’ I found myself on the street, simultaneously trying to push back tears and thinking that I need to get my priorities straight if I was crying over a pair of boot heels. But seriously, BROWN PAINT?!?! Fuck you, Drago shoes on Broadway.
So that was Saturday. But on the scale of upset over possession loss, Sunday was really the kicker.
I have had the pleasure of owning the world’s most perfect strapless bra for many years now. Made by Victoria’s Secret (and probably the best thing they’ve ever made – why does everything they make now feel vaguely gummy?), it stayed on, was comfortable, looked like a tank top when it needed to, and gave the most perfect spheroid shape to the boobles. I have even run into other women who also had the bra, and recognized the same magic glimmer in their eyes when they talked about it (seriously, Victoria’s Secret, REMAKE IT. What’s the problem?) But, after probably very many more years than one should ever wear the same bra and actually pondering adding more hooks earlier in to compensate for the stretched elastic that barely stayed on, I finally came to the sad conclusion that it was time to find a real replacement.
So, to the Town Shop I went, where all bra questions are answered by women who in previous centuries would probably be burned at the stake for their uncanny abilities to psychically attune themselves to the needs of your boobs. And after I laid my sad excuse for a bra down on the table (and taken in the looks of horror from the ladies – I might as well have brought in a pair of old gross Crocs and laid them on the counter at Louboutin), one of the women did indeed find a replacement that seemed as close to the original as I could ask. But when she said that if I turned in my old bra I would get a discount of $5.00 off, I still found myself standing there, looking at the now-misshapen foam, worn-out elastic, and exposed-metal hooks of my beloved, and thinking that I would keep it, you know, just in case. At which point, my woman reached out, gently took the bra from my hands, and said “it’s dead. Sometimes you just have to let it go.”
So I begin a new week shorn clean of some of my most favorite things (well, one, and with a pair of boots with new DARK BROWN #(W(*%$ HEELS), and ready to do as the lady says, and just let it go. Besides, now I have some room in my closet for more stuff.