These shoes were made for remembering

What makes a good pair of shoes?

Is it the way they look, how they feel on the bottom of your feet, what ankle support they provide, how much they cost or how long they last?

I’ve never been a big shoe guy, so I try to buy a pair that will match pretty much anything I wear, but be comfortable enough to walk all over creation in.

My favorite pair of shoes finally gave out recently. A pair of brown Skechers, that we dubbed ‘bowling shoes’ because they had a similar pattern to those green and red shoes you get at bowling alleys.

My brown shoes were perfect for walking, matched my slacks, but were comfortable enough to wear with shorts as well.

It dawned on me when the top lace hole ripped out that it was an end of an era of sorts. My bowling shoes had lasted me more than five years.

Think of all the things those shoes had been apart of! Countless sporting events when I was a reporter at the Tri-City Herald, trips all over the country, church services, hikes and adventures. They were on my feet at Kennewick General Hospital the day my daughter was born. They were also on my feet the day Catarina was life-flighted to Seattle Children’s Hospital, and when she was released from that place.

They were on my feet when we moved to Tacoma, and when we bought our first house together.

Little things and big things, memories and days forgotten. This pair of shoes had carried me through.

Strange to think that these hunks of leather that were woven together by a machine in China could have been at nearly every important moment of the past five years of my life.

They were also on my feet for all of the regrettable things I’ve done and said, things I wished hadn’t happened and memories I wish I could erase.

Even though they are inanimate objects on my feet, it’s a good reminder of all the people that are in your life or on the periphery who are also witness to all the good – and bad – things you say and do.

Like a good pair of shoes, we should take the time to make sure the memories we create are of a good solid foundation, that they look good and are comfortable for all around us – because you never know who may be witnessing your actions.

So as I try on my new pair of Skechers brown bowling shoes today, I hope that they last five years and serve as a reminder to remember someone is always watching and listening to my actions and speech.

– Craig Craker

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