When Did Running Shoes Get So Loud?
I know I’ve only been gone for 4 years, but I’m pretty sure that when I left, running shoes looked a lot like this:
In fact, the ones above are almost identical to a pair I bought shortly before we left for Tanzania. …And I really thought I was going out in a limb with those neon pink highlights. Now it seems running shoes look more like this:
Let me just say:
It’s hard to stay on top of the latest fashions when you’re abroad. Of course, I wasn’t exactly trying very hard. Or at all. And it was freeing. But now I’m back in the land where this stuff sorta matters and I probably need to step it up a bit.
Which is why, upon immediate arrival, Matt and I bought our first real smart phones. I didn’t need a whole lot of prompting. If my in-laws have smartphones, it’s time to get a smartphone. But the whole thing does seem a little hilarious, doesn’t it? It wasn’t that long ago that we were bragging on how teeny and tiny our phones were getting. But now, Will Farrell’s miniscule flip phone is out and the Zach Morris phone is back in!
Being abroad, I lost a taste for some things that never bothered me before. Or maybe I just mis-remembered them. Has news television always been so dramatic? Have there always been hundreds of cable channels to wade through? What is this thing they call a “selfie?” I kid, I kid. But really though, why are there so many channels on cable? We declined to install cable upon our return for a number of reasons, but the overwhelming number of channels was at the top of my list. Ain’t nobody got time for that (Hey, at least I’m on top of my internet memes).
Four years isn’t really that long of a time, but it’s long enough to pause in confusion every once in a while over something you inevitably missed. I counted on social media to keep me in touch with American culture, but even Facebook can leave things out from time to time. For example, how come no one told me that a babysitter will set me back $18/hour in the DC area?
But if there’s one thing that hasn’t changed, it’s the availability of prepared food. Everywhere. Specifically ice cream. It’s just like I remembered the United States to be. Who needs to hire a sitter when you can do Netflix and a gallon of chocolate chip cookie dough. America, you haven’t let me down. And for that, I thank you.