Tales in running shoe retail.

Two girls just walked into the store. And when I say girls, I mean girls. Probably 19; 20 if they're lucky. The brunette was busy tapping away on her cell phone, texting. Like, OMG. The other, blonde, danced in on high heels, with an oversized Coach bag slung over her shoulder. The hood of her vest had fur trim. She weighed about 91 pounds, soaking wet. Her makeup looked good. I'll give her that.

I was in trouble when the brunette finally spoke, as the girls stood staring at the wall of shoes.

"Oh my God, get those! Look how cute! Oh my God!"

I pulled the knife out of my temple and walked over to Paris and Nicole. Surely they needed help. It was apparent that the blonde was in need of running shoes, as she was the one plucking all the pink shoes off the wall. Like, cute!

I was right.

"So, I'm, like, running the marathon? And I need some shoes. I don't know which of these is good for, like, long distance? But these are really cute?"

She spoke in questions.

I wanted to die.

If I have any running shoe pet peeve, it's this girl. The one, who, like, wants the cute shoe? Because, like, I only run in pink clothes? So, like, do you have these in pink? I want to match.


2) One thing I've learned, as a runner, is that running shoes are like jeans. Just like some jeans fit wide hips or low waists or long legs, shoes fit high arches or flat feet or weak ankles. You don't just grab a pair of running shoes off the wall, find your size and go. Because the chances of you grabbing the shoe that is right for your foot is slim. So, you guessed it, picking out a shoe because it's PRETTY-OMG is a bad idea.

b) So, STFU.

And then she continued.

"Well, like, I wear around a size 6. I have tiny feet! See? So, like, I usually just like to get the smallest size you have?"

Somehow I managed to get her to slip off her heels so I could analyze her gait, and somehow I managed to find four size 6 shoes in the back. Size 6 is tiny, by the way.

I tried to be friendly, so out of curiosity I asked her which marathon she was training for.

"Oh, Boston," she answered.

I almost choked. Boston? This girl is not running Boston. You have to qualify for Boston. And this girl, this girl who had never even heard of Mizuno, and who picks shoes that are cute, did not qualify for Boston.

I chalked her up to either a fucking idiot or a charity runner. To give her the benefit of the doubt, I'll pretend she was running for a good cause, and was not just a moron who walks into a running store to tell me she's running the holy grail of marathons and, like, do you have this shoe in pink??

She reluctantly tried on the shoes I brought out - the shoes that were good for her feet - but she couldn't keep her hands off the PINK SHOE. So, I just let her have the god damn pink shoe. It's not as good as the blue shoe. Or the green shoe. But if she wants pink, SHE CAN HAVE PINK. Over-pronation, be damned.

As I rung up her shoe purchase, she made a quick call to her grandma.

"Grandma? Hi. I found some running shoes? They're a really good shoe. Uh-huh. Mizuno? I don't know what it is, but they don't even have it at the Finish Line. So it's good."


Good luck at Boston, babe.