neon orange Vans, yellow Vans

one of each

T

his was unexpected.

Splattered with blue paint, laces ratty, tread gone, Roy’s neon orange Vans had to go. Conveniently enough, it was his birthday and so, per his request, I ordered a yellow pair to replace them. The new shoes arrived yellow enough, sure, but not glowing as the orange ones had done. Nevertheless, Roy was gracious. He thanked us for the new shoes and wore them out the door to school the next morning.

But the orange ones weren’t gone—not yet, anyway; Roy was still wearing them when he opened the box holding the yellow pair. Seeing them jumbled together in the front closet, the yellow and the orange, the old and the new, made Roy want to combine them on his feet, too. Integration over segregation, I suppose. He told his father he would like to find purple laces for this mismatched pair. Like The Dude’s rug (Lebowski Fest, this weekend, in New York City!), perhaps these laces will tie the room together, so to speak.

Even the simplest things don’t go as you expected them to and today I say this without even a trace of a whine. Spontaneity plays tricks, little boys are bold and the world is brighter for it.