Ben likes thrift shopping. I used to hate it. It took him about eleven years to get me to walk into a thrift store without pulling out my ten gallon bottle of hand sanitizer, slathering it all over my body and following him around morosely while trying to not touch anything.
It helped when we moved to Utah and I had the option of going to DI. For some reason, it feels a little cleaner than your average Salvation Army or Savers. Maybe because it is.
I will go into a Savers, don't get me wrong. However, my time limit in Savers is about thirty minutes and then I have to bolt and scrub off four layers of skin. I can easily spend an hour in DI, more if I make it back to the book section.
Ben really, really likes shopping for clothes at thrift stores. I remember giving him horrified looks when he would grab a pair of corduroy pants off the rack and say, "Wow! These are COOL!"
That, of course, is nothing when compared to his love for "name shirts". You know, the work shirts that have a name patch sewed onto them. You'll usually see them on guys that work at a car repair place, oil and lube shop or a tow truck company... I know that people that DON'T work with cars wear them too. I just can't think of any right now.
Maybe a plummer.
Anyhoo. When people leave those jobs, they seem to like giving their work shirts to thrift stores. That's where Ben comes in. Comes in, scans the racks and leaves with a new name or two.
He gets a kick out of people asking him about the places he works when he wears the shirt.
"Oh, so you work for the Ford Emergency Response Team?" someone might ask with interest.
"Nope," my husband answers with a smirk.
"Oh... uh... is your name Pat?"
"Nope," his grin gets wider.
"I just like the shirt," GRIN!!
He also has a New Mexico State Police Leather Motorcycle Jacket. He REALLY liked wearing that when we were out and about in Albuquerque. The people asking for change on the corners would always get really nervous when we drove by. I seem to recall one guy actually turning around and walking the other way when he saw the jacket.
I tell you all this because I usually just roll my eyes when Ben brings his latest "treasure" to me. It's hard for me to take him seriously when he presents me with a shirt that bears the name "Keg".
When we recently went to DI, he came up to me excitedly, holding something behind his back. He professed the awesomeness of his find, and pulled out a pair of dress shoes.
I cringe inwardly at the prospect of wearing something that a stranger had on their feet. How do you know they didn't have athlete's foot? Eww... This is what I was thinking while Ben tried to explain his excitement.
Well, that's okay, I thought.
"You've always wanted me to have these square-toed shoes!"
Yeah. I think they make men's feet look sexy... an impressive accomplishment.
"They were made in Italy!"
"Cool," I can always appreciate fine Italian workmanship.
"They're KENNETH COLE," I could hear, ever so slightly, the sound of Angels' singing in Ben's head.
I think Ben's eyes popped a little bit. I suppose to him, that would be like me saying, "Who's Vivienne Westwood?"
"They're really good shoes!"
"They need shoelaces though."
"Okay," I shrugged.
Several hours after we got home, Ben was still feeling really good about the shoes and put them on so that I could see what they looked like on his feet. The effect was somewhat diminished by the fact that he was wearing white ankle socks and khaki shorts. Ben said that I should look up Kenneth Cole sometime so that I could get an idea of what kind of shoes they were.
So, I did.
With Ben looking over my shoulder, I loudly proclaimed, "Holy Poop on a Stick!"
Similar shoes, brand new from Kenneth Cole were anywhere from just under a hundred dollars to over three hundred.
Granted, these aren't Berluti shoes which fetch a mere $1,830 a pair. But to find a pair of nice dress shoes for five bucks at DI is a rare thing.
A little research and the closest I can figure is that Ben's new shoes are Oxford style Town Hall Moc Toe lace up shoes.
Now, if I could just find myself a pair of Jimmy Choo's at DI.....