Saturday, March 16, 2013

This One Thing: A Strange Quirk of Mine (and My Worst Nightmare Comes True)

My husband would probably say I'm a pretty quirky person. I sing the same line of a song over and over again, sometimes in different voices. I shut all the blinds on the windows and pull the curtain down in front of the door and make sure that I sit in "my spot" on the couch where I can't be seen through the kitchen window when I'm reading at night. (LISTEN. There could be a SCARY FACE looking in at me.) When he's out of town, I sleep with a hammer on my nightstand. (I know, you'd think a knife would be better, but I'm not trying to get that close to an intruder. BAM. Hammer throw.)

But my biggest, and probably longest standing, quirk is my pre-shoe application quirk: I bang both shoes at least 5 times against the ground before putting them on. 

It doesn't matter if they're slip-on flats, tennis shoes, boots. It doesn't matter if they've been sitting up on a shelf. It doesn't matter if they're in a box. It doesn't matter if they're see-through. I will still do it.

Allow me to explain: one fateful day back in 2006 when Mr. Jen was Jen's Boyfriend and we lived together in a cute little apartment, he decided to take me out for a delicious steak dinner. SCORE. I had this adorable little pair of brown canvas flats with a flower print. They were effing adorable. No socks or anything needed. Just slip them on and go. So I did.

While we were walking to the car, I felt something in the shoe knocking around. Figuring it was a pebble or a small piece of mulch, I laughed and said to the boyfriend: "LULZ I HOPE IT'S NOT A SPIDER." He laughed back and agreed, knowing my unrelenting, yet totally rational (don't try and argue with me) fear of the eight-legged monsters.

You can see where this is going.

So we get to the car and drive off. Singing along to every song on the radio, doing car dances, and just generally basking in the awesomeness of each others' company. The "pebble" was soon forgotten.

We get to the steak house and enjoy our medium filets. I have my legs crossed and start kicking my foot around, like I always do. The pebble returns. Damnit pebble, stay still! I'm not taking my shoes off in the restaurant, though. Ah well, we're getting ready to leave anyway.

Fast forward to the parking lot and the boyfriend unlocks the car. I tell him that the rock in my shoe is really freaking annoying. I open the passenger door and take a seat.

"Don't drive away yet, I'm going to shake this stupid rock out of my shoe."

"It's about time. You've been talking about it for like, two hours now."

I take off my shoe.


Commence meltdown screaming bloody murder people are staring who cares KILL IT KILL IT KILL IT bye bye shoe that is now 100 feet across the parking lot WOW didn't know I could throw that far BUT THE SPIDER IS STILL IN THE CAR why the crap isn't my boyfriend doing something about it OH that's right because i've launched myself onto his lap and am probably constricting his trachea right now FINE I'LL LET GO BUT KILL IT.

To sum it all up: I'll never not shake out my shoes again. Ever.


  1. Oh god!!! This reminds me of the time I took a sip of water from a water bottle, felt something... solid... enter my mouth, and it was a spider. :( Practically the worst day of my life. And it was like GREEN! A GREEN SPIDER!!

  2. I had to read that by making sure via scrolling that the spider gif never remained on my screen.

    Also, I'm feeling like 40% "wow, great idea Jen! thanks for the tip!" and 60% "damn it, now I seriously have to bang my shoes on the ground before I put them on. Forever."

  3. Lol, you're SO funny! And that GIF is scary. I HATE spiders with a burning passion, thankfully we don't have many around here, or only small ones.

  4. That would have traumatized me for life! I had my own horror story with a spider - when I was a kid at summer camp, a black widow crawled up my leg. But more than spiders, I hate cockroaches. *shudders*

  5. I would die!! I have a very similar more embarrassing story involving a spider and a bath towel. Let's just say I always look at my towel once I get out of the shower very carefully on both sides before I use it. p.s. I think I will now be checking my shoes.

  6. I am 100% terrified of spiders. I go through phases where I do the exact same thing (mostly I do it if the shoe in question has been in my closet a while.) It doesn't help that I keep my shoes on the floor in one big heap.

    One seriously fantastic thing about living in the city is the population of spiders is pretty low. I used to live in a small little town where we had wood spiders that could be the size of your hand with legs all spread out. I have a few horror stories, but the one I always remember is this:
    I was getting ready for school one. I was probably all of about 13. I was getting ready to put my clothes on and the first thing to go on my person was a shirt. So I put it on then go to decide which pants to wear when I feel a tickle on my leg. I look down and what do I see? A freaking spider on my pantsless leg! I screamed, smacked it away, and proceeded to run out in the living room in my shirt and undies. The worst part? The spider was never found so I was absolutely terrified to go in my room for the next couple days.

    Oh yeah, and one time I called one in our current home by dropping a heavy book on it. After about two hours I went over and picked up the books. I was bending down to put a stick note on the floor by it (I didn't want my husband to step on it when he got up, but there was also no way I was picking it up) when it popped up and started scurrying away! I smushed him with a shoe and made sure he wasn't in one piece anymore.

  7. I'm sorry but I'm laughing so hard imaging this + the fact that it's scarred you so bad that you can't put your shoes on now without banging them against the ground to get rid of any hidden spiders. Too funny! Love this feature, Jen :) Such a great way to get to know you a little better!

  8. Ugh, I HATE spiders and I am now terrified of finding one in my shoe!

  9. Awesome. Real awesome. I am a very quirky person myself, but I've never actually thought of spiders in my shoes. Now, though, there's no way I'll ever have a normal relationship to my shoes again :/ !!!
    Anyway, the story is awesome, so it kind of makes up for it :)


    Except I never experienced a spider in my shoe *shudder* - it was actually because a TV program I saw once when I was a wee child about a brown recluse hiding in a boys shoe and it bit him and he almost died and his foot swelled and etc etc. And then a week after that we saw a spider crawl out of my brother's shoe just before he was putting it on. And I, too, have a TOTALLY RATIONAL AND COMPLETELY NECESSARY fear of eight-legged creatures. So yes...I bang my shoes several times, tip them upside down, and generally act a loon before I dare put it on.

  11. This is HILARIOUS! I've never had a spider in my shoe, but I can imagine reacting similarly if that were to happen *shudders* so freaky!

    I have to check the backseat of any car before I'll get in. My best friend once had her sister hide in the backseat, only to jump out and scare me as we were driving down the street. It's scarred me for life!

  12. omg, I think I would die. That's horrible. and I will check my shoes always from now on.

  13. LOL this whole post made me die laughing. I had a monster spider in my bathroom in Florida last July right after we moved in to the new apartment. I was ready to move the hell out. :D

  14. That is horrifying! I'd smack my shoes forever as well.

    Also, it makes me really cranky when it gets dark when I'm out of the living room and I come back in and my husband has left the blinds open. In the dark! We live on a 2nd floor apartment - no way I could handle a first floor.

    Also, get out of my spot on the sofa!

  15. I would flat out die and never wear shoes again, that's horrifying!!!!

  16. I have to check the inside of my car door - where the door meets the frame of the car - as I have had not 1 but 2 spiders hiding in there. Thankfully not both at the same time though. There was also one on my bookcase one time and I was like "DIE SPIDER DIE" because I couldn't bear the thought it might touch my books. We have 'huntsman' spider here in Australia and they are always the ones I find. Bad spiders. And it's perfectly rational to be utterly terrified of the eight-legged buggers. They have no business in my house or my bedroom.

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