New use for an old fashioned thang

My man gifted me a nice little case of body care tools not long ago.
The tweezers and shaver have since gone rusty with non-use. I quit shaving my legs and tweezing my brows when I realized the meaning of self torture. And I got it young, people. So I look a little rough in places. Maybe he was trying to tell me something.
I use the little scissors to clip my cuticles after peeling them back with the metal orange peeler stick. There’s a cute little mirror with a magnifying side that has enlightened me to be more careful in applying my mascara on the rare occasion that I wear it. I can’t see a damn thing close up anymore.
Nail, and toenail clippers, files, a small knife, and even a little toothbrush, the kind where the case snaps onto the end to elongate the handle so you can actually use it; all very practical and I put them to use often.
There is just one tool in the collection that seems a bit antiquated – the shoe horn. Now, maybe they still use the shoe horn in China. This is not the statement of a bigot. Even if each and every single, tiny little tool inside the pouch didn’t have a tiny, little sticker stating that fact, any of us could bet our bottom dollar that it was indeed made there. What in our American market place isn’t anymore?
Evidently when shoe horns were ‘in’, people wore their shoes much tighter than I do today. You needed this little lever to wedge your foot into the shoe. I can’t even imagine wearing shoes that tight. They even made long handled ones so you didn’t have to bend over to put the tight little buggers on. Well, I guess I’m just plain grateful that I opt for comfortable shoes and that I am flexible enough to hoist my feet up to a comfortable level or even bend over to do it. Work a yoga pose into the action!
Anyway, the horn that came in the kit is made of shiny stainless steel. It’s a pleasing shape, the shoe horn. But honestly, I have not one shoe in my growing collection that would be assisted onto my foot by it. But I kept it. I slung a loop of twine through the little punched out hole in the end, hung it on the key hook by the door. And one day I thought of a new way to use it.
I’m living in a tiny, shotgun shack this winter. At times it can get quite muddy out around the acreage. It’s that kind of mud that builds up on the bottoms of your boots until you are a good two inches taller. The kind of mud that doesn’t let go. If you continue to walk around on these mud platforms it doesn’t eventually fall off, it smooshes up onto the sides and curls up over the tops! I usually use whatever is handy to scrape it off: a crusty old bovine pelvic bone the dog dragged home, the hoe, an old knife, a stick. And one day I thought, what about the shoe horn as boot scraper?! I tell you, it worked marvelously. The curve that would wrap around your Achilles tendon allows for it to scoop just so below the mud layer. It comes off in one big slab like peeling an orange. The edges are perfect for getting in the treads and the heel crevice like a fine toothed comb. And being metal, it cleans up real nice.
Just tonite I found yet another use for it. I was cleaning up the cabin, in wait for my man who was bringing dinner. He likes a tidy house and I needed to scrape candle wax from the table. There’s nothin’ like company to make you realize how not tidy your house is. The candle wax was a little thick…again with the shoe horn! That shiny little wedge of metal scraped every trace of it up, and effortlessly.
Check back with me. I have a feeling alternative uses for shoe horns has just begun.


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