Steps on the Stairs

March 29, 2010
By Bergen Fossen BRONZE, Hartland, Wisconsin
Bergen Fossen BRONZE, Hartland, Wisconsin
4 articles 0 photos 0 comments

There are many ways that we identify other people we know. Voice, eyes, shape, height, etcetera, but here’s one way that people often never consider: footsteps. You can tell numerous things just from listening to one’s footsteps. For instance, my father; my father’s footsteps are a plodding march to a silent rhythm, one foot after another with a hard stomp against the stair steps. On the contrary, he is a stereotypical father. Go to work each day, supply the family financially, and then exercise his authority as lord of the house, annoying all in earshot. Rinse, lather, repeat.

My middle brother traverses the stairs with rapid and successive steps, as if his life depended on how fast he could get from one floor to the other. However, he might be one of the slowest and laziest people I know, so the connection is non-existent, at least to me.

My mother, being the only woman in the house, steps with relative grace. She can sometimes be hard to hear as she ascends or descends, but with her often speaking to the dog or cat in baby talk, it’s more so the voice that alerts one to her presence.

I, on the other hand, take the steps two-at-a-time in quick bounds. To take pleasure in making my footsteps as silent as possible is more like an impulse for me. A way that I’ll often challenge myself is to negotiate the stairs as quietly as possible, then sneak by into another room with no one realizing I was even present. I’m so ninja.

The author's comments:
Inspired by the book: House on Mango Street.

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