I always thought I was pretty cool. Not when I was really young, like 2nd and 3rd grade – then I thought it was cool if you were a fast reader, which I definitely was not and Jay still kids me about how long it takes me to read something. Fay was the fastest reader, so she was the coolest. Actually, she is still cool so maybe her ability to breeze through Nancy Drew was not the “it” factor anyway. By middle and high school, I started to get the swing of things. Being the youngest in the family helps I suppose. I got to “go to school” on everything my older sibs did. I also learned early how to fly under the radar at home – letting the drama swirl around my sister and brother - yet take it all in.
I had a friend whose housekeeper, Sally, liked to label us gaggle of girls, individually. My label was “fast” and she wasn’t talking about the 50 yard dash. I didn’t even know what that meant at the time! I was not fast! But maybe it was close enough to “cool” that I was OK with it.
Which brings me to the present. I just don’t think I’m all that cool anymore. At 63, maybe I just don’t care as much. I bet you are either cool or you have some people in your life who are the very essence of coolness. I’m talking about those women who just look awesome all the time but also like they haven’t had to work very hard to get there. They have the right jacket that they put with those crazy pants, or a short little boot in a color I would never look twice at in a store or maybe a scarf that is perfectly arranged in a way that looks casual yet just right and stays that way, without a fuss! I envy others’ pocketbooks too but when I go to buy one JUST like theirs, it just doesn’t seem right for me somehow. And jewelry – like a funky, chunky necklace – I feel like a child playing dress up in anything other than my cross or a boring string of pearls. Then you go into their homes and whoa. Everything just looks exquisite, from an adorable French country guestroom tucked under an eave with exposed wood beams harvested from an old barn, to their designer dish brush placed just so by the kitchen sink, not anything fancy yet lovely and well….just….cool.
Of my many cool friends, there are two I only really get to see in the summer. Carrie always wants me to go to the antique show with her. I usually decline because I’m hopeless when it comes to antiques. What is just old and what is old and “valuable”?! – I have a hard time telling the difference. I have been the lucky recipient of a little silver dish on one of Carrie’s ventures though 😊. Jeannie is my other cool Michigan friend. Whenever she suggests something to me, I run to order/buy/google it because I know it will be amazing and yes, I do feel kind of cool – by association. She suggested a TV series to me that I immediately binged on and you should too – Poldark. I defy any red-blooded American woman NOT to love that show! The cast, the scenery, the romance….ahhh.
Last summer, Jeannie gave me the tip of all tips. SHOES! She told me about two different kinds that have changed my life – well, one did and the other blew my kids away. Maybe they thought I was cool - for a minute.
The ones I adore are called Rothy’s (https://rothys.com/collections/women). They can be casual or kind of dressy, come in a million colors, are so, so comfy AND they are made from recycled water bottles so they are good for the planet AND you can actually throw them in the washing machine. I know. They sound weird and too good to be true. The only drawback is they are kind of pricey. My favorite is the flat (embarrassingly, I now have them in four colors) which is the least expensive at $125. If you have a narrow foot, you might like the pointy one. The loafer is new so I haven’t seen that one yet.
The other one that my sons and daughter-in-law wear almost every single day are All Birds: (https://www.allbirds.com/products/womens-wool-loungers?variant=42216034247 ) These are sneakers that are super comfortable and come in beautiful, earthy colors. The Wool Runners are a traditional lace up and the Loungers are truly that. I have the latter, in pink, and although they look and feel like bedroom slippers, I wear them out and about anyway. All Birds come in toddler sizes too!
So, if you are cool, you probably already know about these shoes. But it you’re not, now you can be (at least your feet can).