Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I Will Not Make A Feet-Pun-Title. I Will Not. It Is So Difficult To Resist.

For me, the worst parts of winter are the feet-related parts. After thirteen winters in the frozen north, I have solved most of the other problems of winter (solutions include: down, silk, fleece, shearling, bag balm, and fossil fuels). But feet are a special challenge. Feet are where the body meets the outside world, and winter makes the outside world cold and slippery.

The cold is just a six-month-long annoyance, but the slipperiness really cramps my style. I spend winter grouchily mincing around outside like I'm wearing a hobble skirt, instead of my preferred activity, marching around like I own the place.

But this year, instead of just mincing and grumbling and shooting dark looks at the houses of the Non-Shovellers, I took matters into my own hands, seized control of my destiny, and did some internet shopping. I bought some really mean-looking steel spiked contraptions that wrap onto your shoes, and give you Total Dominion Over The Ice. And they make me about a quarter inch taller, too, so I feel all competent and powerful (hey, it doesn't take much for some of us shorties).

Once I strap them onto my waterproof boots, I can march over ice, slush, water, snow, and half-thawed roadkill (the normal mix around here a few days after a snowstorm). The only bad things about them are that they're a bit of a pain to get on over your shoes, and you certainly don't want to wear them inside unless you need to aerate your wood floors or de-thatch your carpet. The other drawback is that I have lost my fear of icy sidewalks, and if I go out without my spikes, I'm a bit like a toddler who's swimming without waterwings for the first time, "Hey no problem, I can tota-aaaaAAH!!" But with a little common sense, I feel like I've finally conquered the slippery.

So now that the slippery part of Winter Feet is solved, the cold part needs solving. My feet, once chilled (49 seconds sockless exposure to a 65-degree home? chilled), will not re-warm without strenuous exercise, a hot bath, or six hours in bed. The other night, with freezing feet and warm everything else, I rigged up an emergency Feet Heater (Sedentary Model). I do not recommend this, and I'm sure there are countless ways to injure yourself or others with one of these, but here it is, as a cautionary illustration only, I'm sure:

You will need two hand towels, a plastic zipper bag, and a microwave. Fold one of the towels so it will fit flat in the plastic bag. Once it's folded, get it thoroughly wet, and wring it out (still folded). Put it in the microwave for some small length of time. One minute, perhaps (remember, this is not advice or instructions or a good idea). Once it's steamy, remove it from the microwave with tongs or a hot pad. It will be very hot! Very very hot! That's the point! Slide it into the plastic bag, squeeze the air out, and seal the bag. Wrap the hot, dangerous thing in the other (dry) hand towel, and put it on your feet. Now you will be immobilized by comfy warmth. Rally the troops to bring you beverages and entertain you and make dinner.

Winter! Do your worst! We have spikes and dangerous home-made contraptions!

Ha!

Ha ha!

1 comment:

Jennifer Hrabota Lesser said...

Oh no Anna, I think there may be some terribly trendy fleece lined boots in your future. I tried on some Earth brand shoes that were the warmest most comfortable things I have ever worn-but their striking resemblence to the uggs on every fake-baked teenage girl in providence prevented me from purhasing them. How vain is that? honestly though, I have been thinking about them pretty regularly.