Cowboy Boots & Clean Feet
We were walking through a fair when I spotted a booth selling used cowboy boots. I've (desperately) wanted some for some time, now, so I dragged Jay in even though there was no salesperson around and used boots at fairs are sketchy. It looked like there were some women's styles that were maybe size eleven, so I was taking my time poking through them when the salesman showed up.
He suggested I sit down to try some on and motioned to a chair that was squished in the back of the booth. He lumbered over and began easing his body to the floor by my feet.
"Now I get to be the guy that kneels down in front of you."
The guy gets down on his knees in front of me. I suddenly remember that I am wearing my only sneakers that have terrible foot odor and begin to silently panic. Nobody - and I mean NOBODY - wants to be a foot above my feet when these shoes pop off. Sales guy is looking up at me expectantly so I begin to slide one foot out.
Before I get even an inch out of my shoe, the guy reaches for a squeeze bottle of hand sanitizer.
"Are you ticklish?"
"No... WHAT ARE YOU DOING???"
"I'm going to rub this on your foot."
"I would really rather do that myself."
This man is going to sanitize my foot? What the hell? Who does that? And besides that fact, my foot probably stinks.
At this point I really wanted to make eye contact with Jay but I was completely unable to look either of them in the eye. I felt really confused and embarrassed. Nobody has EVER sanitized my foot before putting it in a shoe. The sales guy didn't ease this discomfort with his next words:
"Now I get to be the one to stroke your feet. Do you like foot massages?"
After very awkwardly rubbing my feet and smiling at me he passed me a pair of grungy and very old socks to put on after my foot dried a bit. I was momentarily super grossed out but I figure every foot that has touched them has also been sanitized, so probably it's not too bad? (Don't crush this belief. I need everything I can get, here, people.)
The boot didn't fit. Typical.
We stood up and edged towards the door. The guy, still kneeling on the ground, suddenly blurts "I'm really cranky today, too, you know".
"Yeah. I have a headache. And a toothache."
I look at his mouth and realize that he only has 3 teeth. This completely stuns me, as you can imagine.
"That's too, um, bad? Those are the worst."
"I also have two hernias."
He proceeded to explain that he can't eat potatoes or cupcakes because he is on a diet. I guess that cupcakes would be my second favourite food, too, if I had no teeth. I can fully swallow a cupcake without chewing, no problem.
For no very good reason I couldn't seem to stop answering the guy, even though Jay was giving me progressively more and more speaking glances indicating that this situation is insane and we should back away slowly. I can't help it. It's in my Canadian nature to be polite and not leave awkward pauses after someone speaks.
When we were in the next aisle of booths I got the giggles. Badly. Jay played it cool but right before we fell asleep that night I could see him lying in the dark, grinning ear to ear.