Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The one about Chacos…

We live in a time when accusations, aspersions against one’s character are usually and expediently as forgotten as last month’s lotto numbers. I’m not so lucky. I tend to take things rather seriously. (Those who have worked with me in comedies could tell you that I take comedy even more seriously.)

And so it was that Vicky and I were out the other night, looking for new sandals. My old ones had gotten, well, old… like wearing a pair of old rat pelts. Either the sandals were rotting or my feet were – actually, it was both. It was time for a new pair! So, Vicky and I went around what used to be called the Orange Mall, from one store to another, looking at sandals.

And all of them – I mean all of them – I looked – all of them were made in China.

About a year ago, when I was speaking out against torture, the accusation was made on this website that by purchasing any electronic device – any electronic device – I supported slave labor and was, therefore, a hypocrite. It didn’t matter it I tried in every way to be a good person; the profligation of electronic components from China made any call for ethical rationality moot.

Now, I don’t believe that for a minute and I didn’t believe the person’s comment. It wasn’t the comment that I took personally but, rather, the thought that the other 2,117 readers last year believed him. The thought that I would be so poorly thought of, along with the idea that this individual could be so thoughtless in his expression, was just sad.

So, I couldn’t buy sandals made in China. I know you think I’m being silly – Vicky sure did – but the thought that anyone might think I’m a hypocrite, especially if I was one knowingly and intentionally, just didn’t sit right. Surely, we could find some sandals made somewhere else…

… right?

… Hello?

… Anybody?

The answer is, surprisingly, NO! Even when we went to REI, we found that all of their sandals were made in China. China, it seems, corners the market on casual feet.

And then, after I started to discuss this problem with the salesman, he pulled out the Chacos. Made in Colorado by an environmentally-conscious company – they exist? – they seemed to be everything I wanted. But, were they comfortable?

Damn, yes! Strangely, they’re a little heavy, but I figure that’s like getting a little workout when you’re relaxing – bonus!

Then, we saw the price… and I paid $72 for a little peace of mind. Oh well. It was worth it.

I can’t know that everything I have has been made by the most reputable of companies. I can only try my best to make sure this is the case. It’s the trying that counts. I can only pity those who would argue that the difficulty makes it not worth the while.

(Those readers who know about the news I have – just be patient. It’s coming. Relax.)

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