There Has To Be A Form Of Therapy For This

This is the keep pile... and doesn't include all my flip-flops!

I am nose-deep in boxes now. The hardest part of the day was dragging my shoe collection in to the living room to sort through. I love my shoes. I actually found myself getting sentimental over some of them, even though they are certified torture devices. As an avid watcher of the Style Network's "Clean House", I followed their advice of taking pictures of beloved items that you are giving up so that you can always remember.

I've had these since 2000. I was in the Army stationed at Ft. Huachuca, AZ for AIT. After being stuck wearing only uniforms for several months, we had finally reached the stage of training where we were allowed to wear civilian clothes and go out on the weekends. I was at the mall with the guy I later ended up marrying when I saw these Steve Maddens on display. I actually let out a shriek of joy and almost mowed down an elderly lady to get to them. My ex just shook him head in disbelief... until he saw the $60 price tag and he freaked. That should have been the first sign on why I shouldn't have married him... and besides... they were on sale.

I paraded around in these shoes for several years. They are horribly uncomfortable. All the weight on the bottom is only supported by those thin straps on top, causing for horrible dig marks on the upper foot. The footbed is actually kind of pillow-like but that causes for a horrible hissing sound everytime you put your weight down.

I bought these while visiting Atlanta in 2004. I had found an awesome shirt to wear out to the Buckhead district that night but realized that I had only packed black shoes. These were picked up at Nine West despite the fact that they really are a half size too small. I somehow managed to get up on the bar at Coyote Ugly to dance with these things on. They are, by far, the most uncomfortable things I have ever forced my feet in to. I could barely walk the next day.

Another Nine West purchase that I wore to the Marine Corps Ball in 2004 with an ex-boyfriend. The ex-boyfriend was secretly a cross-dresser who actually tried on my dress the next day while I was at work and took a picture of himself all dolled up in drag. No ill will towards him (who now lives as a her and shall be addressed as she for the rest of this entry). I know she reads my blog so I will say this: no woman can get over seeing someone else looking better in her own dress. The shoes are a little tainted in my mind, even though she didn't have those on in the picture.

No matter how much I tried scuffing up the bottoms of this shoes, they remain super slick and almost send me flying. The heel on them is very skinny and wobbley. Not the easiest shoes to walk in. Plus they kind of make my ankles look fat.

A DSW find that I wore for New Years 2005. Two Army friends came to DC to party so we got all dolled up for a club. The big silly flowers attatched to the shoes can be blamed squarely on Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City. These were killing my feet before we even got to the Metro. Several drinks were spilled on them throughout the night, and I have never been successful at getting the stains out.

I had actually worn these sandals a few times before I incorporated them in to my Greek Goddess Halloween costume in Atlanta again in 2006. They are balanced weird. You always feel like you are tipping forwards while wearing them. Not a good combination when you have been drinking!

Next step in packing? My ridiculous purse collection.

Hoes Before Bros

How does one go about making new friends nowadays? After 5 years in Virginia, I am going to have to start from scratch and cultivate new friendships. When I was in college and the Army, making friends was so easy. You just moved in to your dorm/barracks room and walked down to the rec/day room. Everyone you worked with already had at least something in common with you so it was like an instant community.

The obvious answer would be to look for friends at my new job. I have worked with most of the people at our North Carolina office in the past. They are a nice and smart group of people but most of them are much older and married with children. Not exactly the type of people I can see myself going out to party with. Besides, most of them are men and I am looking for a new girl posse.

Conventional advice for making new friends is to join a church, volunteer or join other social groups. Since my religious beliefs put me firmly in the agnostic camp, I doubt I can find any religious groups that I would fit in to. The election this year does open up the opportunity to do some volunteer work that might be interesting so I won't count that out.

Somebody told me about Meetup.com which is like an online bulletin board for clubs in your area. At first, I was reluctant because it just sounded like online dating but for friends. I HATE online dating with a passion (all that "Describe yourself" nonsense) but I figured I would give this a try. I plugged in my future zip code and found 2 interesting prospects amongst all the bible study, scrapbooking and Ron Paul meetups. One was for a rowing club. My blog collaborator, Bad Wolf, was on the rowing team when she studied abroad in England, and she loved it. I'd like to give that a try. Added bonus: maybe I can avoid gym membership because rowing will keep you in shape!

The other group was a social club for single women with no kids:

"We are a social group for women aged 21-35 living in Jacksonville focused on building positive friendships.
Events are child-free and centered on adult interactions.
We are quite active and require members to attend meetups and contribute actively to the group.
Our members include single girls, career girls, very well educated girls, girls with partners, previous military, Jacksonville locals, military spouses, civilians, international girls and adventurous girls."

Sounds good to me so I made up a profile and requested membership. I was met with a survey chock full of job interview style questions. What would I contribute to the group? Tell us about yourself (but only in the 1,000 words that the text box will allow you.) What interested you in our group? Our events are child-free. Do you have children?

Aaaarrrggh! I guess making friends these days ain't what it used to be.