John's Crocs (nearly) save the day

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

We like to give John Ross a hard time for wearing Crocs. Plastic sandals look silly on a six-year-old, much less on a grown man. Plus, when he wears his camo Crocs, I have trouble seeing his feet -- they blend into the background so effectively -- and that can be disconcerting.

As a torrential downpour and flash floods swept across the city, we got word that the basement here at Alive was flooding. John immediately thought of our archives -- 22 years’ worth of vintage Alive issues, which we store on the basement floor in cardboard boxes that are decidedly not waterproof. (Hey, we’re writers, not archivists.)

So we quickly launched Operation Archive: Alive Rescue! With help from Shelley Mann and a couple friends from marketing, we raced down to the basement, still not knowing what we would find there. Knee-deep rainwater? A rushing current sweeping our precious promo T-shirts to the Scioto? An exposed network of underground rivers occupied by a reclusive yet benevolent race of Mole People? I was ready for anything.

Now, this is at the end of the workday, and I’m still wearing my one good pair of shoes. One good pair! I get a lot of use out of them, so I wasn’t thrilled about wading into the flooded Mole People tunnels.

But just then, I looked down and saw that John was wearing his signature camo Crocs. I had to say it -- I told him I couldn’t believe those things were about to save the day. I’m sure he was relishing the thought of throwing two years’ worth of Croc-bashing back in everyone’s faces. It was like the moral to a Jack Chick comic, except instead of Lucifer teaching us not to make out in the backseats of cars, John Ross was teaching us not to hate on ugly plastic sandals.

Well, as it turns out, the Crocs’ glorious redemption will have to wait for another day. There was a small amount of water in one corner of the basement -- a quarter-inch maybe. I easily walked around it without damaging my one good pair of shoes. And the Alive archive was still dry and safe (we moved all the boxes off the floor as a precaution). Sorry, Crocs -- maybe we’ll need you next time.