πŸ‘΄ jdcard

On Again ... Off Again

A Puzzling Development

I bumped into a file today that I began working on months ago. It sat idle waiting for me to complete it (my, how patient and kind and gracious it was!) all this time. I spent the last several hours finishing it, so here it is for your bemusemnt.

Blocks And Pipes Puzzle

πŸ“§Comment on this post (via e-mail)

πŸ“… c: 2023-09-23 00:32 ✏️ e:

🏷 tags: #puzzles #diagrams #HowToThink

2023-09-23 00:41 πŸ“– A Puzzling Development

How To Buy Shoes


Those who've lived with me know that I've always worn the same type of shoes each day. During the years that I needed that style for use with my uniform I developed a preference for that particular style that stuck with me ever since. It took me a few years in the beginning to find which manufacturer's black oxfords worked best for me, but I soon settled on the Red Wing Shoes Style 101. That's what I've worn ever since, buying two pair at time so I can alternate between them -- shoes last much longer if they dry thoroughly between wearings.


The records I have indicate that I purchased shoes in the spring of 2005, and again in September of 2014, so it is about time to replace them again. I had noticed that, since I weigh about 80 pounds less now than when I bought the last pair, my shoes seemed to fit more loosely on my feet. I decided to have my feet measured before buying the replacement shoes. Red Wing advertises their "Ultimate Fit Experience" that uses "state-of-the-art scanning technology" to create a 3D model of your feet, after which their expert staff will recommend the appropriate shoes for you -- that sounded like just what I needed.


The other thing that the people who know me best will already understand is that I do not like to return merchandise to a vendor for any reason. My rule about buying things is that you shop carefully, make your purchase and take your chances -- if you discover that you've made a poor choice (whether you made a mistake in measuring or choosing colors, or whether the merchandise itself turned out to be less than expected in some way) then you'll be more careful with your next purchase.

The last bit of background needed here is that I've been working diligently for the last couple of years to eliminate as many trips by automobile as I possibly can.

The Process

So it's time to buy some new shoes. The nearest Red Wing dealer with the fancy foot-scanning technology appears to be in a town about 80 miles away. I drive over there on Monday and the staff is happy to measure my feet using the scanner. One foot turns out to be nearly one size larger than the other, but that has never been a problem in the past and should not be problem this time either. The size recommended by the staff was either a 12 or a 13 because my larger foot measured 12.5.

But, they didn't have the Style 101 in stock and could no longer order them. I looked around to see if they had something similar that might work. Indeed, there was the Style 607, a 6-inch work boot that is similar to the 101 oxfords -- the 101 looks like a topless version of the 607. My podiatrist had recommended a shoe with better ankle support anyway, and the 607 was a little less expensive the 101, so the disappointment of not being able to buy my standard shoe was lessened by those factors.


I (thought I) had read comments online that many of their customers ended up buying slightly smaller than their usual size, so I tried on the size 12. They felt pretty good, and seemed to provide better support for my feet. I'll take two pair, please. They had only one pair in stock and agreed to ship me the second pair. I wore the new boots for the rest of that day. The next day I wore my old shoes again (remember that I don't wear them two days in a row, they get a day to dry before I wear them again).

On Wednesday I wore my new shoes again and walked a couple of miles to my doctor's office for an appointment. By the time I got home I knew that I had definitely selected the wrong size of shoe. I discussed the problem with my wife and we decided to take the shoes back and get the larger size. Thursday morning we drove back to the dealer, who cheerfully exchanged them for the same shoe in size 13. I tried them on in the store and they felt good on my feet, so I said I'll take them and let's change the pair that are on order too. This time I even went to a local park to walk around for a while before driving home again to be sure that the fit still seemed right after wearing them for a while. One foot felt slightly loose and the other slightly snug so I thought that I had it right, and we drove home.

On Friday I was anxious to test my new shoes on my normal daily walk. That one foot still felt a bit snug, and by the time I got to the top of the hill and started home again I knew that the fit, although much better, was still not right. Frustrated, disappointed, and embarrassed, I told my wife and she encouraged me to take the shoes back (again!) and get something that fits better.

Saturday we got back in the car and drove back to the dealer, who (again cheerfully) got me size 13 wide this time. I tried them on and walked around the store, paying careful attention to how they felt on my feet. They seemed perfect! I'll take them. And they actually had two pair this size in stock so I walked out with both pair this time. Still being cautious I stopped a couple of miles down the road and walked briskly for about 20 minutes or so before driving home to confirm that the fit really was right this time. It was! Today I verified it by walking my regular two-mile route up the hill and back -- they feel great.

What Went Wrong?

Although I have for many years been able to walk into the shoe store and order "two pair of model 101, in size 13D" and get exactly what I needed, things change. And I don't like change, unless I'm the one who deliberately made it happen.

I was embarrassed by having to return the shoes even after I tried them on before buying them. The neuropathy that affects both of my legs leaves my feet mostly numb, not enough so to keep me from eventually feeling the pain of ill-fitting shoes after I've worn them for a while, but numb enough to make it hard to discern how well they fit during the few minutes inside the shoe store.

I'll also plead lack of experience here: after all those years of good results just ordering by size without trying on the shoes I really don't have much experience with the trying-on process. I've gotten better at it recently though πŸ˜€.

I hated to have to make the long drive once, doing it three times used about eight months worth of my planned vehicle use all in one week.

The Conclusion

It's gonna be OK! Changing situations, though perhaps frustrating, are not necessarily disastrous and may even result in a better outcome overall.

The merchant advertises a 30-day unconditional comfort guarantee during which they'll exchange or refund your purchase. I've always mostly ignored these claims as primarily marketing language designed to motivate you to buy. I expected the process to be arduous enough to discourage most folks from actually attempting it. Not so! in this case. I have been a satisfied customer for a long time, and still am. (But I still really wanted the oxfords!)

It seems that every do-it-yourself project I attempt around the house will require at least three trips to the hardware store; buying shoes should not be like that.

πŸ“§Comment on this post (via e-mail)

πŸ“… c: 2023-04-02 17:57 ✏️ e:

🏷 tags: #shoes #embarrassment #lessons #CustomerService

2023-04-02 17:57 πŸ“– How To Buy Shoes

Climate Action?

Perhaps I'm getting a bit crazy, or perhaps a bit desparate. Though I'm definitely a fish out of water when it comes to social media I've taken to sloganeering on Mastodon in an effort to influence somebody, anybody who might scroll by. Will it make any difference? I believe the answer is "yes", if enough people care and begin speaking out.

Yesterday's first post:

πŸ›‘ Stop polluting the air that I must breathe by operating
your motorized vehicles! Please.

"Burning fossil fuels harms others" -- Peter Kalmus

Big oil is too powerful? Stop buying gas from them.

Now I'll have to develop and refine a collection of bumper sticker / elevator pitch / sound bite slogans -- oh yeah, this is the internet and here they call stuff like this "memes". And I'll have to be somewhat consistent in posting them. Posting here is like putting a sign in my front yard, folks who happen to wander down our out-of-the-way street might notice it when they're in the neighborhood. Posting on Mastodon is more like passing out leaflets at the mall or plaza downtown or other places with crowds of people.

πŸ“§Comment on this post (via e-mail)

πŸ“… c: 2023-02-27 13:01 ✏️ e:

🏷 tags: #StopBuyingGas #DrivingIsSociallyUnacceptable #WalkingWorks #BikesAreNice #RideTheBus

2023-02-27 13:44 πŸ“– Climate Action?

Previous Posts

2023-02-07 14:36 πŸ“– What Can I Say?

🏷 tags: #ClimateChange #Degrowth

2023-01-22 12:42 πŸ“– What's Your Plan?

🏷 tags: #degrowth #WhatsYourPlan #LetsPlanTogether

2022-11-16 18:10 πŸ“– Open Harassment Period

🏷 tags: #Medicare #telemarketers #phone #harassment

2022-10-20 11:26 πŸ“– How Can We Decide?

🏷 tags: #election #voting #information #deficit

2022-10-08 20:53 πŸ“– A Very Cranberry Day

🏷 tags: #cranberries #oats #porridge

2022-09-26 12:58 πŸ“– This Week's Photo Assignment

🏷 tags: #photo #assignment #scholartree

2022-09-24 23:04 πŸ“– It's Happened Again...

🏷 tags: #age #celebration

2022-09-14 21:48 πŸ“– How Do I Change The World?

🏷 tags: #climatechange #crisis #personal #adaptation

2022-09-08 22:57 πŸ“– Historical Blog Entries

tags: #blog #history

2022-08-22 10:58 πŸ“– Why Am I Here?

tags: #freedom #censorship #exile

2022-08-08 13:02 πŸ“– Openness

tags: #open-source #fear #security #friendship

2022-08-03 13:06 πŸ“– Things I've Learned From My Granddaughter

tags: #learning #teaching #parenting #diet #wieght-loss #nutrition

2022-07-26 07:21 πŸ“– A Tired Old Man

tags: #tired #hopeful

2022-07-19 13:08 πŸ“– There Is No Jewish Religion?

tags: #religion #judaism #christianity #hebrew #english

2022-07-17 20:22 πŸ“– W.H.E.O.S.O.E.

tags: #exhausted #refreshed

2022-07-16 05:47 πŸ“– Welcome To The Past

tags: #nostalgia #building #relationships

2022-07-14 20:20 πŸ“– Finished (For Now)

tags: #success #uncertainty

2022-06-25 19:56 πŸ“– Wow! The Lagrange TUI Rocks!

tags: #happy #textmode

2022-06-20 08:00 πŸ“– Temporarily Relocated

tags: #tired, #happy

2005-04-23 20:04 πŸ“– Another Operator: An M2 Stripper?

🏷 tags: #Opera #M2mail #e-mail #attachments #utilities

2005-04-17 06:39 πŸ“– Papa's House: Thanks A Lot!

tags: #family #travel #customerservice

2005-03-23 07:20 πŸ“– Papa's House: My Days As An Eco-Terrorist

tags: #childhood #adventures

2005-02-05 07:29 πŸ“– Papa's House: Are You Serious?

tags: #ambiguity #context

2005-01-29 10:39 πŸ“– Papa's House: What Do You Want To Be If You Grow Up?

tags: #goals #family #ambiguity

2005-01-23 02:40 πŸ“– Papa's House: Hey, I Really Made A Mistake

tags: #errors

2005-01-18 07:37 πŸ“– Papa's House: All Together Now

tags: #family #cooperation

2005-01-12 09:01 πŸ“– Papa's House: A Walk In The Park

tags: #family #childhood #fun

2005-01-11 08:00 πŸ“– Papa's House: The Nutty Nutcracker

tags: #family #school #performance

2005-01-10 12:42 πŸ“– Papa's House: Carol's Quilt For Kaylee

tags: #family #crafts #quilt

2005-01-03 09:01 πŸ“– Papa's House: Old And Older

tags: #family #travel #memories

2005-01-03 07:46 πŸ“– Papa's House: Welcome

tags: #family #blog

2005-01-03 06:01 πŸ“– Another Operator: Opera On USB Flash Drive - It Sorta Works

🏷 tags: #Opera #portableapps #thumbdrive

2004-07-11 02:07 πŸ“– Another Operator: Why Only Opera?

🏷 tags: #Opera #irc #etiquette

2004-04-24 16:04 πŸ“– Another Operator: I Give Up

🏷 tags: #userstyles #stylesheets #Opera

2004-01-26 07:01 πŸ“– Another Operator: Oh No!

🏷 tags: #userstyles #stylesheets #Opera

2004-01-08 14:01 πŸ“– Another Operator: System Colors For Stylesheets

🏷 tags: #userstyles #stylesheets #Opera

2003-12-21 07:12 πŸ“– Another Operator: Only One Of Many

🏷 tags: #Opera #blog

2003-09-27 17:11 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: No, Not Yet

tags: #travel #stories

2003-09-13 17:13 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Almost There

tags: #travel #desert #highways

2003-09-09 16:24 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Day Eleven

tags: #travel #family #anniversary

2003-09-08 07:37 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Day Ten

tags: #travel #family #Colorado

2003-09-03 16:50 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Day Five

tags: #travel #family

2003-09-01 08:42 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: That's A Pretty Good Start

tags: #travel #Utah

2003-08-30 05:45 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Are We There Yet?

tags: #travel #highways

2003-08-29 20:41 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Last Night Home

tags: #travel #preparation #planning

2003-08-27 10:09 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: More Preparation

tags: #travel #preparation

2003-08-27 09:16 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Help!

tags: #travel #preparation #lost

2003-08-24 17:45 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Getting ready.

tags: #travel #preparation #lost

2003-08-24 14:02 πŸ“– ROAD STUFF: Well... It's A Start

tags: #travel #preparation

1998-08-08 00:00 πŸ“– Newman Occasional Journal: A common citizen

tags: #family #perspective

1998-08-01 00:00 πŸ“– Newman Occasional Journal: Introduction

tags: #family #war #history #populationgrowth #perspective


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