Comment dredge

My basic attitude about leaving comments on others’ blogs is that, knowing how much I love getting feedback myself, I’ll always leave a comment if it’s convenient for me to do so, as (for example) when I’m not holding a baby or a bowl of cereal. (Actually I have left comments while holding a baby, but that didn’t go so well.) And, since I really like the sound of my own voice fingers tapping at the keyboard, often my comments will be extraordinarily verbose. So, often when it looks like I’ve been pretty quiet here at my blog, it’s because I’ve been being awfully noisy elsewhere. Once in a while, a sense of economy leads me to gather up some of my ramblings from elsewhere and recycle it here. This is one of those times. (Note that I’m also linking back to all the posts I responded to.)

Melanie at Write Stuff was talking about shoes. I said,

I was just thinking about shoes last night — not because of your post, but because I was thinking about my current problem that there’s something wrong with the 4th toe of my right foot (which I keep meaning to see a doctor about) and because of that and foot size changes from pregnancy (including that some of the shoes I wore while pregnant are now too loose) I currently own not. one. pair. of truly comfortable shoes, shoes that I could walk a mile in without them flopping around nor pinching. Not even tennis shoes.

While in this train of thought, I remembered learning, a couple years ago, with great surprise, that Utah County women buy the most shoes per capita of any county in the nation. (A county in Southern California came in second.) I’m still trying to explain this statistic to myself, but last night some of the possibilities I came up with were:

Shoes are often sexy but never immodest (so they’re all fair game for modest women)

Since LDS women attend church and other dressy functions regularly, we need dress shoes

We also have lots of possibilities for hiking and other outdoor sports, and need appropriate shoes

We all (cough, or anyway most of us) exercise regularly and need shoes for that

We have all four seasons here (even if Spring is only two weeks long,) so we need the full complement of seasonal shoes

We’re not New Yorkers or Seattle-dwellers so we actually wear color and like having shoes to match

. . .

I came up with all of these explanations because I was trying to avoid coming to the conclusion that LDS women are vain.

. . .

Without going upstairs to count, I’d guess I have about 20 pairs, but most need replacing for the reasons I gave at the beginning of this post, as well as just from their being old and worn out. I do have my own shoe snobbery in that I just won’t wear shoes that aren’t leather.

P.S. I looked at sandals at Nordstom.com the other day and they had about 1000 pairs. I don’t know how we can believe ourselves to be in a true recession with that kind of shoe choice (but we’ll see what happens to the selection in a few years — I imagine all these shoes were in the works before the economy headed downhill.)

(There I go writing a post-length comment again.)

Oh and I just remembered another thing. Dooce.com once posted some fabulous t-strap pink heels she’d bought and was in love with (I hate to say it but they were even more fabulous than yours) and I couldn’t help thinking that she was showing her Mormon roots in loving those shoes — there were even east-coast commenters saying things like “Really, Dooce, *pink* shoes?” And then a few weeks later she mentioned wearing the shoes to a nephew’s or niece’s baptism and I thought “Yup.” (I remember the shoes well because I searched for them online but they sold out as soon as she posted them. A few months later they were back in stock but by then I’d decided that, sadly, I really didn’t have anything to wear with them. But if I get pink clothes I might have to search for the shoes again.)

These next ones are actually short comments, (so you can see I’m capable of those as well):

TAMN of Seriously So Blessed was describing her couponing prowess. I said:

I’m so much less righteous than you. 😦 (Or is it “fewer righteous”?) The only coupons I bother with are the half-off or 40% off ones at JoAnn’s and Robert’s, or the ones for $4 off a 4-lb jar of Jelly Bellies at Costco. Gotta love jelly beans in bulk — I just wish I didn’t have to share them with my kids.

And when TAMN was talking about her twins’ acne problem on the eve of their blessing day, I said:

I just think it’s so weird that you and I (or anyway our spouses) (or actually Heavenly Father via our spouses, if you want to get technical, but you probably don’t want to get technical,) blessed our babies on the same day. My baby’s complexion was beautiful, creamy and rosy. In fact, she’s only ever had one teeny cute little recurring spot next to her nose. But, she cried throughout her blessing (she would stop crying whenever my husband stopped talking,) and he admitted he truncated the blessing a little bit for her sake and also because it’s hard to think when a baby’s crying. So I bet overall you (and your babies) came out ahead, with their more comprehensive blessings — unless the Aquaphor and tanning didn’t work and you canceled the blessing after all (in which case, win/win.)

And on Facebook, when TAMN said, “BLESSING DAY! Church is at 11. Can’t decide if I should go early to save 100 seats or late slash almost late to make an entrance…” I responded with, “I did both today — showed up early but had to go to the mothers’ room to dress the baby (her long heirloom gown would have gotten wrinkled in the car seat) and try to get as much milk into her as possible with the six remaining minutes after she was dressed before the meeting started. Made it in halfway through announcements (along with the other mother having a baby blessed, who was also nursing/dressing her baby.)”


This next one’s responding to a post that’s now been deleted at Frog and Toad are Friends, in which she talked about the pitfalls of infelicitous spouse selection:

I could write at much length on this topic, since, with my husband’s and my parents both being divorced, we both knew the odds were against us going into this, so I’ve always paid attention to topics pertaining to marriage. To try to keep this at a reasonable comment length, though, I think I’ll limit to a few thoughts:

For those that recommend living together as a trial period, you should be aware that statistics are against that advice: marriages that start in living together have worse odds of lasting — at least that was true when I took a marriage prep class in college years ago (before I ever met my husband) and I’m guessing it’s still true; living together is different in kind from marriage and doesn’t lay a solid groundwork for it. As someone who’s religious, I also think that it’s setting a child up for a lot of emotional pain to imply that it’s okay to be physically intimate where there’s not specific commitment through marriage. I think there are other ways to mitigate against marriage disasters, and agree with those who’ve recommended teaching kids both by word and example what a good marriage should look like.

That said, it’s also true that you can marry the right person and then they can change — so maybe we have to teach kids that they should do everything they can to choose someone compatible, kind, and respectful, but that they also shouldn’t blame themselves if their partner irrevocably checks out.

As far as communication goes, I heard a psychologist say that we [married people in general] wouldn’t have gotten married if we weren’t already good at communicating, but that what really matters is WHAT we’re communicating, so good will towards our partner is far more important than just communication.

I really could go on and on and on (NOT because I have a perfect marriage, but because I’ve tried to learn what I can to help give it the best odds possible,) but I’ll make myself stop here.


And I’ll also stop here. There’s more to be found, so I’ll put it in the next post. Probably, if I get around to it.

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13 Responses to Comment dredge

  1. Kristina says:

    I did enjoy your post on Stephanie’s blog at Diapers and Divinity, and I agreed. And I have to say, you leave the longest, most thought our comments ever.

  2. zstitches says:

    I even added a second comment over there — they’ll both probably go in my next dredge post. And I wish I felt certain that leaving the longest comments was a good thing. 🙂 What can I say; I love to talk.

  3. I think I need a nap after reading all these! You have the gift of typing very profound comments.

  4. lili says:

    Shoes never immodest? Don’t you remember the student ward stake conf. I attended a few years ago where the seventy (who was released the following conference–just sayin’…) Anyway, don’t you remember how he told us to stop wearing strappy shoes, and that if we weren’t modest from the neck to the toes, we weren’t modest at all?…I can’t help i, but now whenever I put on sexy shoes I think about that bizarre meeting and feel (ever so slightly) like I’m being rebellious. I’d never thought of the possibility that some shoes are considered immodest to some…but talking to my co-worker, she says she car pools with a guy who has a real hard time with shiny black leather high-heel boots at church (or at all)–says it totally seems skanky and immodest to him. Too funny! I had no idea that some people have erm… nothing more to call it than foot fetishes. So here’s the question: If I wear sexy shoes and it causes a man to have impure thoughts, am I accountable/am I being immodest?

    OK I’m done 😉

  5. zstitches says:

    Lili, yes, I totally thought of that — but obviously wasn’t equipped to give all the background of your story. I guess I coulda said “modest to most normal people” or something.

  6. the MomB says:

    LOL Lil.
    I loved reading all of this. I love it when you recycle your comments, Z, because I always wish I could read all your responses on other blogs and I can’t.

  7. Kerri says:

    I was surprised to hear the Utah County statistic but I have noticed that when I go to Utah everyone looks exceptionally well accessorized. Here people don’t care as much about looking good (including me.) I find that most of my shoes are black. And, I don’t have very many shoes. . .er, or so I thought until I started counting them and found I do have a lot more than I imagined. You’re right–the reason I have so many is because I have to match my church dresses. Of course, I live in the east so that might explain my dark color palette of choice. . .hmmm. I never thought of that.

  8. Virginia Wood says:

    OK. I have to show this post to Barry (who, by the way, thinks I have way too many shoes.) This might be because he owns two pair of shoes. Well, if you count the holey, stinky pair he gardens in you could stretch it to almost three.)

    Ladies, think about it–what man is going to oggle a woman who is wearing a flat pair of ugly shoes? Of course we wear shoes that make us feel taller, slimmer, and (dare I say) sexier. I just wish they would make skanky shoes in WIDE sizes. It is a particular gripe of mine!

    Aunt Ginger

  9. Virginia Wood says:

    I have a very good friend who is a little on the wide side. She complained to me one day that in her effort to take off a few pounds she found she’d only lost weight in her bust and feet–two places she’d just as soon keep the same size as before shedding a few pounds, thank you. Sometimes life just isn’t fair!

    Aunt Ginger

  10. People can learn all the communication skills in the world, but that doesn’t necessarily help people feel loved——which is why the 5 Love Languages is such a hit. Try their 30 second love assessment and apologize assessment at their official website. Good stuff. Have you and your spouse fill it out guessing yours and theirs (love and apology language)—–I have rarely had a couple in counseling get the other person’s love or apology language right. Ouch. But a good place to start.

    • zstitches says:

      I tried to take that quiz once but I find that I can’t choose between the options — they all make me feel loved! I could possibly rank them, with the gifts one placed last, but I’d have a hard time deciding which got the absolute top spot. Maybe the time/attention one, but I’m just not sure.

      And under the apologies one, I can’t find my best answer either, which is not just “I was wrong,” but, “I understand what you’re saying about why that hurt you/upset you.” I do also like the ones about making it right and promising not to do it again. I guess I’m love/apology multilingual.

  11. Amy says:

    Well said. I get a kick out of your posts. 🙂

  12. Jennette says:

    Your TAMN comments are too much! I’m totally laughing.

    The marriage comments are really great too. Actually, everything always is.

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