On a fall day a few decades ago my niece, when she was about 8 told me about her new teacher for that year. She said he seemed nice enough, but that he “wears weird, ugly shoes.” So, that statement has always stuck in my mind. And, since I know the guy well enough to exchange pleasantries, my eyes go immediately to his footwear and to see if he is still wearing weird and ugly shoes.
What he did wear back on those days was so-called Earth Shoes. Those of you of a certain age will remember those allegedly ergonomic (though they weren’t) bits of footwear in which the soles were on backwards and the wearer perpetually felt that he was walking uphill. And yes, they were weird and ugly.
But, before I indict the guy unfairly, I once fell victim to ‘weird’ shoes in a desire to be au courant (for the 10 minutes such footwear was trendy) and I bought me a pair of platform boots. How cool, of me, I thought. Ladies will simply doff knickers spontaneously the moment I clomp into the room, dazzled into disrobing just by my sheer fashionability.
I think I wore the goddamn things twice. They were obscenely uncomfortable (the proverbial “cruel shoes” a la Steve Martin) and simply looked plain stupid and sort of pathetic. Then they sat in my bedroom closet for a couple of decades until I chucked them. I made the same mistake (equally briefly) when I bought a pair of faux Doc Martens. It was just after I’d lived in England for a year and for some perverted reason wanted to ape the garb of the bovver boys.
“What an asshole,” I said to myself after having worn them a couple of times. I’ve called myself an asshole a few times over the years, and have always deserved the personal indictment. This time was no different.
My problem is, I like shoes. I have a number of pairs, ranging from sandals to fine leather boots of cowboy, snow, and soft Italianate leather zip side ones that just plain look seductively cool. I also had a pair of good Italian loafers that I wore for about 2 decades. I almost cried when I finally ad to be rid of them. Likewise, I had a pair of soft leather ‘Beatle boots’ that I bought in London back in 1968 and I likewise nearly wept when they’d outlived their lives.
Currently I have two pairs of good wingtips that I’ve hardly ever worn. The black ones, in fairness though, I have worn to two of ‘my’ weddings. They’re probably good for a third, not that I’m planning to go in that direction.
Anyway, shoes are something I really like and I am proud to say that I currently have no ‘weird’ ones. But what I Spice Girls really-really like is ladies’ shoes. Women have so many options as to how they are shod and slight heels with open toes, in which varnished toesies poke through are just downright provocative in a fetishistic sense.
Now, I’ll go no further with ‘that’ subject, although I’ll confess I am writing this with naked feet.