Monday, May 8, 2006

For Sale: Baby Shoes, Never Worn

Hey, you there?
My online Buddy IM's me.
We used to be co-workers in another life. What were once daily office chats are now quick IMs sent across telephone and DSL lines.
He's a stay-at-home-dad, fellow
blogger and, like me, has a 4 year old and a 6 month old.
He's also a newshound. He scours the news sites on a daily basis and often sends me links to current events stories.

(Sometimes more often than I'd like because who the hell wants to be reminded of all the bad news out there these days?)
(I think he thinks I am too ignorant on world events.)
Today he tells me of an article he read recently that noted a story about Ernest Hemingway who was once challenged to write a novel in 6 words. This is what he came up with:

For Sale: Baby Shoes, Never Worn.

How incredibly sad, my Buddy notes.
I agree. Nestled within those 6 words is a profound sense of loss that we, as parents, hope beyond all hope that we will never have to experience firsthand.
A few days later I am still pondering those words and find myself with a different take on them.
In this age of excess (Can you SUPERSIZE those fries, please?) Hemingway's words read more like an eBay ad posted by a someone who finds themself as my friend and I do with too many baby clothes and just not enough days in the week.
Just for fun I go to The Mouse's closet.
I pull out her shoes one by one.
I count 11 pairs of shoes.

Two of those pairs still have the tags on them.
One pair is size 0-3 months. A pair of pink and blue sneakers that I just HAD TO HAVE when I was still pregnant with her and which she has never worn.
She has but two feet. Two deliciousy kissable feet with 10 pudgy little piggies.
Feet which look much better naked than covered up with man-made leather uppers and canvas.

Hemingway's Greatest Novel?
Or one Mom's desperate attempt at reclaiming money pissed away frivolously lovingly spent on too many baby clothes?
You decide.
And in the meantime, anyone wanna buy a pair of baby shoes? [NWT!]


InterstellarLass said...

My son is 10 (almost 11!) and going through a pair of shoes every 3-4 months. I'm going to have to ask for an increase in child support...

:o) said...

Something I did with a very tiny pair of my daughter's baby shoes is make a Christmas ornament out of them. She is delighted every year to take those out and marvel at how small her feet were.

rose said...

It must be a mom thing. When I first read the title of your post my first thought was of the brand new shoes my daughter has never worn... The sad aspect of the greatest novel only struck me after the fact...

Suburban Turmoil said...

Great post! I find as the kids grow older, there is less and less "never worn" clothing. I also learned never to buy 0-3 month baby clothes for an expecting mother. I had drawers full of 0-3 month stuff and my baby never wore most of it- She wasn't really going anywhere during that time so mostly, we kept her in onesies for comfort! But now at 2T, I'd love a few extra outfits! :)

Wicked Stepmom said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Wicked Stepmom said...

Luckily, the extra shoes and clothes cost us NOTHING. We have very generous friends and family. The Mouse's 11 pairs of shoes? All are hand-me-downs, with the exception of the 2 mentioned in the post. And I was given an additional 5 pair last week! It's borderline obscene...