I am thinking of throwing away my pair of white Converse shoes but a friend, who is very sentimental, told me to keep them because they represent the hardships I have gone through during my study in Vietnam. The sole of the right pair looks like the mouth of a gaping alligator and the left, although a little decent-looking, is already showing signs of imminent demise.
Like a pair of Levi’s, the more they are worn and torn the better Converse shoes look, to a certain degree of course, as they are also governed by the law of diminishing marginal return. My pair of white Converse, which served me well, have gone past their serviceability. Being sentimental myself, I am reminded of the bicycle I left in Hanoi which I named Peggy.
That pair of Chucks were half a size smaller than my normal shoe size but eventually after repeated wearing matched perfectly the contour of my feet. They were too comfortable that I never washed them since the day they were bought more than a year ago fearing that I would be depriving myself of their comfortable fit. And I could not afford to let go of that sense of security the pair gave me even for a single day for washing.
Letting go of things we have gone accustomed to can be painful especially if we already personified them, gave them names, and associated our life’s most important highs and lows to them.
I’ve always loved wearing Converse shoes. They represent comfort, quality, and style. A pair of black or blue canvas is so versatile that it can go with any kind of statement and mood. The worn appearance is dependent on the owner’s history of wearing them which make each pair of Chucks unique.
It is also why an old Converse shoes is too difficult to let go because it is like throwing a way a certain part of your self, of your spirit that the pair has already imbibed and become part of it.
I will store them somewhere to be revisited someday when memory will have to need something concrete and corporeal.