I’m sorry to drop off the planet. Parenting, work and life got in the way. But today I’m back with a tale about following your intuition. I believe our intuition is our best defense… that is when we actually listen to it. It’s the first sensor to go off, yet our mind often shuts it down because logic tells us otherwise.
How many times have you gotten a “feeling” about something, and then your mind gets in the way and says “But that’s nuts. Everything’s fine with that baby sitter.” Then when you get home you find them plowing through your liquor cabinet or something?
So the other day I was going to get a new pair of running shoes. I would usually go to a place like Target or Famous Footwear so I don’t have to pay $100 bucks, but I somehow found myself wandering into an independent shoe store in a mall. I’ve always loved helping the underdog- I learned that from my Dad. He would literally try to keep a restaurant in business by bringing everyone he knew to the place on weekends. Didn’t matter if the food was any good, mind you, he just wanted to help people keep a business alive.
As I walked into this shoe store, I got a feeling in my stomach that something wasn’t right. My “gut check” was in full swing. But I decided to ignore it to see what kind of shoes they had to offer.
Right away I’m drawn to a pair of Nike’s. I’m not a fan of all these neon colored shoes but managed to find a pair that wasn’t too offensive.
“Can I help you?” Someone said before I had to time to look for assistance. A man missing most of his teeth was standing right next to me.
“How much are these?” I asked, noticing there was no price tag on the shoes.
He grabbed the shoe, looked it over and said.
“I’ll work something out with you. What’s your size?”
Work something out with me? I don’t even know if I want the damn shoe!!
I told him my size and he disappeared into the back. I tried to find a place to sit down and managed to lean on a clothing rack. Everything in this store looked dirty. The whole place had a sort of film over it. I wanted to leave, but waited for the salesman to return with the shoes regardless.
“These should work,” he said.
I put them on, and they fit fine.
“How much?” I asked.
“$150” he said.
That might be a normal price for shoes these days but my gut was saying “GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE!”
Yet, I stood there.
“This is the first pair I’ve tried, so I think I’m going to keep looking,” I said.
Immediately, my toothless friend tried to keep the negotiations going.
“OK, you know what, I’ll give them to you for $125,” he said, as if that would make me feel better.
“I don’t know,” I groaned, my radar still screaming for me to evacuate.
“How about $115?” He begged.
If he can go from $150 to $115 so easily, how much are these things really worth?
I sat there looking at him.
He must really need this sale. I better do my part…
“Well, I guess that’s better than $150,” I said, caving in.
As I paid the man for his shoes, I left feeling like I needed a shower. Not just from the dingy store residue all over my body, but from the smarmy business deal.
I pulled out the shoes when I got to my car, and noticed the size said 5 and a half. I wear a size 7 and a half, yet these shoes fit me.
He gave me a child’s shoe!
I looked across the parking lot and saw a Famous Footwear. I decided to go inside and see what they had to offer.
If they have shoes under 100 bucks, I’m going to be so pissed!
Sure enough- some really great Nike’s were there for 80 bucks. (Grown up sized too.)
My gut was right. I should have left the other store when my internal alarm started to sound, but NOOOOOOOOOOO… I had to save the world.
So do yourself a favor. Listen to your “gut-check” when it goes off the first time. You might save yourself $35 bucks, dammit!