The Ties That Bind

Christmas break is officially over as the Odd Number bid his farewell this morning. He’s a sophomore at Boise State now and man, they have a long break! Long enough in fact, for me to notice that the young man didn’t know how to tie his shoes.

How can that be, you are asking yourself. The kid is 19 1/2, for crying out loud. Well, it gets worse. Her Royal Highness, age 22 next month, confessed that when she is in the locker room lacing up her ice skates, people critique her technique. That’s because we raised grown ass adults who still use the double bunny ears method of tying their shoes.

We’d bought them a book like this, and those little do-it-yourselfers seemed to have caught on quickly. At least I knew I wasn’t tying their shoes anymore. And maybe there were a lot of slip-on shoes or even Velcro … maybe I didn’t want to know the truth.

But when I saw the Odd Number looping those big bunny ears with his manly paws, I couldn’t turn away this time. We had issues and we needed to work through them. I knew that age had made me a better, more patient teacher, and that was good because Odd is still left handed.

We sat down and practiced a proper shoelace knot, with just the one bunny ear, and then over, under, around and through — now we meet Mr. Bunny Rabbit, pull and through! Victory! We high-fived and I texted Her Royal Highness so she would know it is never too late to learn. And she texted me back and said now that one of my kids could tie his own shoes, I had a 50% success rate. “Still an F,” she noted, with the slightly superior texting tone of the college senior.

Slip-ons can cover up shoe tying deficiencies.

Odd headed out for the night, slipping into his laceless shoes. All was right with the world.

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