Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Going Bananas

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Going Bananas

Article excerpt

I walked into the office and asked, "What do you think of my shoe shine?"

My friend admired the mirror-like surface. "Looks good," she said.

"I did it with a banana," I said, proud and unafraid, out of the fruit basket at last.

She didn't phone security and have me carted away. Instead she delicately sniffed the air.

"It's amazing," I said. "My shoes don't smell like bananas at all. They smell like sweaty old leather."

"I'd like to try it," she said. "If the kids haven't eaten all the bananas."

You may have missed this grooming tip, if you didn't see the April issue of Men's Fitness magazine. It starts this way: "Do you ever wonder why the guy who always looks impeccable always looks impeccable?"

I did. Some people can show up with their shoes shined and their faces unwrinkled, even at early breakfast meetings. Now I was going to find out how they did it.

"Even if he's on a business trip and he wakes up an hour late and the hotel's fresh out of irons and his new shoes are giving him blisters and the temperature's in the triple digits, he still looks cool," the article said. "Under the same circumstances you'd probably stumble into a meeting looking like you just got mugged by a pit bull."

Well, no. I'd look like I got up an hour late, put on a sweaty, wrinkled suit, and my feet hurt. That would be enough to scare the pit bull away.

"Grooming disasters happen to everyone, but you can overcome them with some low-tech tools and quick thinking. Here's how to rebound in almost any emergency situation."

I skipped to the section called "unscuff your shoes."

"The Kiwi shoe company makes wallet-size wipes," it said.

A terrific idea. I can put them in my wallet with my free coffee club card, my outdated cleaning tickets, the cash register receipts I can't read, and all the other debris that makes my wallet weigh a pound and a half. It isn't money making it so heavy. There's never any in there.

Then the article casually slipped in this:

"Or, if you don't mind wiping fruit on your Florsheims, try a banana peel."

I read that part again. I thought it said I should rub a banana peel on my shoes.

"Rub the inside of the peel on the scuffed area, clean off the residue and buff carefully with a soft cloth or napkin. …

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