It’s All in the Boots

February 21, 2008 by Ellen Stimson in Vermont, Vermont. New England, Winter

Something happens to men when they move from the city to the country. They start wanting things. They get rain jackets for fly fishing that would get them through a monsoon. Then they collect an assortment of hats. There are ski hats, and helmets with goggles, there are other hats for sledding, and then for rainy days there are these Raiders of the Lost Ark things that probably came from J. Peterman. Next come the boots. There are lots of these. There are winter boots, and mud boots, and just knocking around, ‘I am man’, boots. Eventually, if you aren’t really careful, they start wanting to buy a truck.

The other day we had one of those ice storms we’re known for up here and my husband, the city guy with lots of boots, ran the car off of our driveway and sort of into the garden. He knew just what to do though. He came in and changed his boots. Then he went back out with a shovel assuring me that he’d have it in just a little while. The next time he got behind the wheel, the car dipped over it’s rather precarious edge more firmly into the garden. He came into the house and I suggested we call a tow truck. Nah, he almost had it now. He headed back out with a bag of kitty litter thrown over his shoulder and another shovel in his hands. I swear he changed boots again, but he denies this. You could smell the burning rubber and hear the horrible screeching sound tires make when they are firmly planted on the ice and digging fast through snow down to mud. We’d had a warm day with bunch of rain, followed by a day with sleet and temps dipping into the teens. Then it snowed on top of that and we had essentially a thick cottony blanket over an ice hockey rink where our driveway used to be.

So I really thought calling a tow truck was the right thing to do But John was equally certain that by freeing only one more tire, this car was going to be restored back onto the driveway and we would be on our belated way.

He dug, he sweated, he sprinkled kitty litter…(kitty litter, I ask you??!!), in all the right places and took his seat behind the wheel. The engine roared to life, and the car, without missing a beat, slid smoothly down the embankment, through the rock garden, and crashed prettily into the picket fence which it dragged alongside, until it stopped rather picturesquely right in front of the chicken house.

John got out and suggested we call a tow truck…I blame the boots


  • margie

    What clothing item prevents them from asking for directions????

  • katiedid

    The jock strap…..

  • Amy

    Gosh darnit! He must of picked the wrong boots!

    Thanks for your comment and book recommendation. I am sure to visit that post in a couple of years when my girls are older. I love Dave Barry.

  • Kellan

    Oh, how sadly funny! My husband has an assortment of boots too – work boots, cowboy boots, rubber boots, hunting boots, golf shoes – well, those aren’t boots, but they are very important! Thanks for the fun story – I hope you got the tow truck and all went well. Take care and stay warm – Kellan

  • Teachin' this mommy new tricks!

    IT IS SOOO TRUE!. We just moved from Utah to Alaska and now my husband is all about Carhardt and Boots and wants good camping gear!

  • Law Student Hot Mama

    Thanks for stopping by my blog . . . My husband collects all of those things even though we live in the city. He doesn’t have a boot/truck thing, but he has all these other random pieces of equipment he will only use once a year (if that often) that clutter up our pad. *sigh* I guess this is no different than the fact that I own several “evening bags” even though I never go anywhere in the evening to use them . . .

  • kat

    Carhardt? Oh man…you have a truck in your future honey. Maybe you can talk him into a cool old one. How about turquoise? I suppose pink is totally out of the question

  • drew

    what’s wrong with carhardt? i love carhardt. it is waterproof and warm and cool and manly too, okay? what’s wrong with manly?
    that fence was probably rickety

  • trish

    and tools. they all want those yellow and black power tools the minute they step foot outside of the city. but will they so much as touch a screw driver to the driping tub faucet? no, they will not. they don’t have the right tool for that

  • library lady

    The scourge of our neighborhood is a kid who lives across the street and who has what we woould have called a ‘souped up car’ in my younger years. It has dual carbuerators and roars loud enough to shake the windows. Every morning at 5:00 AM he gets in it and warms it up and pumps the gas. Yesterday we had a mean ice storm and I had the pleasure of watching the kid getting stuck and sliding off the driveway and into the yard. I’m just sorry he didn’t have a rock garden to run through! He didn’t change his boots once!

  • jamie

    Ha! You can’t blame him for trying, can you 🙂

    I heard you all were getting another nasty storm up that way–hope you get the car taken care of before you get too much more ice and snow!!

  • jamie

    No–she doesn’t read it.

    No–your priveledges haven’t been revoked! 🙂

    And don’t worry–it’s not a habitual weekend thing!

    Take care!

  • Don Mills Diva

    HA! That’s a great story. It’s so true about the clothing.I introduced my city-boy husband to camping and now he has every gadget and piece of clothing you can imagine for camping!

  • Anonymous

    Ah, the joys of gender…

    I might point your attentions to the importance of having the right accessories in your own life, E. I seem to recall that the right jewelry, (ahem) purse, and (point point) shoes- have played an important role in certain folks lives as they prepared for meetings/conferences/interviews and the like…

    Now… where did I put that Black and Decker?


  • illinois x

    yes let us not forget the 85 pairs of shoes and matching handbags required for the well turned out lady…oh, and the matching david yurman watch and bracelet to go along with the donna karan dress/skirt whatever thing you call it/them (outfit?)…i mean we might have a couple of pairs of boots and hats and a small truck…geez….well and every imaginable gadget under the sun….

  • the dragonfly

    My husband would have done the same thing. Exactly.


  • TheCynicalOptimist

    Bummer. If only he’d had some steel toed boots I’m confident he could have gotten the car unstuck.

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