Wednesday, June 25, 2008

click-clack. click-clack. pause.

This was the eleventh pair of shoes he had tried on. They were brown leather and laced up the front. He stood their awkwardly still unhappy with the fit. “The sides are thin, but at least this pair doesn’t pinch my toes. And, they actually have this one in my size.” We looked at the new shoes as he walked around. We were in the Mall of America, so there were many different stores providing a variety of options to choose from. This store, unlike the previous four we had been in, had a shiny marble tile around the edge of it, so as he walked, his steps made a click-clack, click-clack sound. Click-clack. Click-clack. Pause. Click-clack. Click-clack. Pause. “I don’t know. They just aren’t very comfortable,” he said as he looked at his worn-in Chaco sandals.

It occurs to me that sometimes paradigm shifts feel like new shoes. As we put on the new shoes, they dig into the sides of our foot. Every time we step on the marble tiles, it creates a click-clack, click-clack sound making us more aware of the discomfort that we already feel. Until the shoes have been worn in a bit, they feel stiff and awkward. But, the irritating displeasure of wearing new shoes will not be overcome if we refuse to wear them. In time, the leather grows more supple and conforms to our feet. And, in time, these new shoes become our worn-in friends that we hate to step out of.

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