In case any readers were worried about my turgid ankles and left foot (as if), I can re-assure them that, after a mere 18 hours back home, they have deflated and returned to normal (or at least, normal for me – a bit like NFN, I suppose). It seems my potential new career as a gymnast is over before it has even begun.
However, even without things swelling ‘down below’, feet have been much on my mind of late. How so? I fondly imagine that I hear you cry, well let me explain…
Whilst ‘festing’ up north, I had with me my trusty FiveFingers shoes – though only wore them on relatively dry days given the rather feeble resistance they mount to the ingress of water. Let me tell you, they attracted a number of admiring comments from both locals and visitors, young and not-so-young alike. At one of my final gigs, when I – fearing rain – was wearing a more traditional shoe (along with its fraternal sibling), a young chap entered and sat almost next to me wearing a pair of FiveFingers. Not just any old FiveFingers, but the exact same model (Bikila) and colour-scheme (light grey and red) as mine. This chap laughed in the face of wet feet (I know, I asked him), and so wore his even more often than I wear mine. I am no longer alone! I suppose I need to seek out some even more obscure footwear now to regain my evanescent sense of individuality in this homogenised, corporate world.
Feet have also been on my mind as I am reading “The Ode Less Travelled” by Stephen Fry. This is designed to help the reader unleash their inner poet – so be afraid, be very afraid! This blog has heretofore lacked prosody, but that (relatively) golden age could soon be at an end. In the all too near future, I could be giving you all the big iamb. There are so many feet to choose from: iambic, anapaestic, trochee, spondee or pyrrhic to name but a few (and wouldn’t these all be great names for shoes?). What metrical scheme to pick?
One of my last gigs was to see Luke Wright, a relatively local (Colchester) poet perform – further cementing my middle-class credentials. He really is very good – with some seriously fine balladry. His set also contained a short introduction to the meter of the ballad, use of the iambic foot and the fact that pentameter and anapaests are only for showing off (which does make them very tempting – but perhaps I should walk before I try running). This was also the very same gig in which I met the chap wearing Bikilas. This goes beyond coincidence (reminding me of “Elastic Planet”, the splendid radio series by Ben Moor, and one of the inspirations for this blog): the universe has spoken – and I think it is telling me to blog in verse (or worse). (Well, I suppose it could be telling me to visit a chiropodist – but that seems rather prosaic, which is – of course – the complete antithesis of poetry.)
You have been warned – prepare for the versed!