Archive for August 6th, 2013

These Boots Are Made For Gawking

Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

In the late ’80s I gave a series of speaking seminars to bankers in Victoria, Texas. In those days, I was making mad money and spending it stupidly – so before I left Texas, I wanted to buy some real cowboy boots.

I went to Lucchese, one of the world’s most famous custom boot makers and settled on a basic, brown/black, cowhide, custom-fitted model.  The “booter” looked bored. We ambled on back to the measuring room and then I remembered to ask him the price of this fashion statement.

“Three thousand dollars,” he said and continued ambling. I stopped.

“Pardon me – what did you say?”

“Three thousand dollars – including fitting and shipping.”  Seeing the stunned look on my face, he said, “But these are Lucchese boots. They’ll last almost a lifetime.”

I remembered my first car cost $600 and lasted 2-years. I could have bought five of the damn things and driven barefoot for the same price for a decade!  Then I thought of New York winters.

“They might last a lifetime in the dust – but do you know what salt slush can do to them for five months out of a year?”

“Nope,” he said.  Now we were both embarrassed – for me.

“I’ll have to think about this,” I said trying to slip him a ten spot for his trouble.

He looked at me like I grew an ostrich head before his eyes.

“Cain’t take that,” he said amazed.

I quickly left the store.