The day began with a few clouds, punctuated with occasional stabs of sunlight. Since it was nearing the end of Shoe Show week, and the office would be nearly empty, I opted for causal olive chinos, flat sandals (from a brand other than the one which employs me), and a white cotton tank topped with a navy linen blend open front cardigan. (Sneakers don't exist in my wardrobe, except for the gym.) The train ran on time, my ticket was never collected, and the fruit stand had a fresh delivery of Red Delicious apples. A fine start to the day.
As the clock struck 1pm, the fashion gods began to pelt me with stones. Though I had run a PTO search before we assigned a certain pseudo-controversial name to a certain shoe weeks ago and come up empty, I had advised against such a move to be safe. Since no one really acknowledges my presence most days, my legal advice went unheeded, and a unfriendly letter from an unhappy lawyer arrived in the mail. Lovely. Next, the showroom visit previously scheduled for Friday at 8am was suddenly moved up to this afternoon at 3pm (yes, picture the scene in Devil Wears Prada where the fall preview is rescheduled with 15 minutes notice, and then Andy dribbles corn chowder onto her blue, lumpy sweater). With 2 hours to finish a days worth of work, an outfit not suited for the buying big wigs of the top department stores, and footwear that would get me fired, I had a lot to accomplish.
The sample closet contained only size 6's and, try as I might, my size 7 foot just wouldn't conform to fit (regardless of how hard I crammed it in). Off to the subway I ran. Unfortunately, the express trains were running local. The store nearest the showroom where I could swap my favorite flats for some company branded wedges didn't have anything in my size that I would remotely consider placing on my foot. My preppy chinos had sagged and wrinkled from the long subway ride and the heat I was producing at rapid rates with the impending deadline approaching. The further away store had something that would work, so out I ran with the new shoes on my feet and the salesperson yelling after me that leaving behind the box made the shoes a final sale (standard in the industry in case you should find yourself in a similar predicament). I skidded into the west side showroom with seconds to spare, proud of myself for arriving (in brand) on time. Too bad the presentations had actually started early (probably for the first time on record). Perhaps I'd be better suited for another career. Maybe something in botany or still life painting.