I want to begin a category on the blog that maybe answers no specific question other than those little things in life that make you go hmmm.
Let me illustrate through this post.
What is the deal with dress shoes? I am not talking about the dress codes or formal events that bring the requisite nature to these shoes. I don’t even mind dressing nice or looking the part. Well, I should not fully say I don’t mind. I like looking the part, but by the end of the day I loathe my shoes, or at least my feet do.
This has gotten me wondering, wondering several things in which all come back on the maker, proprietor or inventor of these shoes. And ladies, don’t even worry. I know you have it way worse with your shoes than us men will ever have it.
Nonetheless, I want to ask the question on every medium I can, or at the minimum this one, who thought dress shoes was a good idea?
For starters, I can’t even fit my foot in my shoes without cramming, jamming and even using extra utensils (shoe horn) to get my foot squeezed into these fashion-conscious, dress-appropriate footwear.
Who thought it was a good idea to make a shoe that takes such vigorous work to get onto the foot?
Okay, but good things come to those that wait. I get that. Having a difficult time getting into something should not on its face make it a bad invention or creation. I get that. But the lack of ease to sliding on a dress shoe only begins the questioning.
Beyond the fight to put on the shoes I don’t like, once it fits onto my foot, the clock starts ticking . With my silly feet and chicken legs, I only have so much time I can wear them. I choose not to say comfortably as it is not a limited time of comfort I have. It is a limited time of well-being. I am starting to think of how I can utilize the stool more in the classroom, sit more often in the office, or simply stay off my feet that do look so handsome with these fancy shoes. My feet and legs just can’t take too much. The other day, after changing out of my shoes into my flip-flops, I wobbled around for about 10 minutes as the strength came back into my muscles and ligaments and stability into my joints.
Is it possible that the man or woman behind the dress shoe is really a sadist? Surely, they are a capitalist.
No one can deny the money-making that flows in from dress shoes. Who do “they” aim the dress shoe market at but business people, professionals, and fancy-pants men of all makes and models. In other words, they aim the shoes at the people who can afford to pay for the shoes that have little practically to offer beyond fashion and appearance of professionalism. Thus, they are not marking down prices to help the blue-collar worker, or the student scrapping by. No, they mark it up for the white-collar guy. Interesting that the clergy gets the white collar even as they make far less money, but that is a story for another day.
Here is one way to illustrate what I mean about the ability to afford shoes. My dad worked for Motorola who suggested a professional attire. However, most people wore comfortable tennis shoes or loafers. When my dad asked if they would provide dress shoes that looked the part and wore comfortably (a rare find indeed) he was told no. When he countered that they provided work shoes for the factory workers, they did not budge. The factory workers boots needed to be up to specifications for safety sake. When safety gets involved, corporations will spare no expense. But dressing up can be afforded by those who make the money to look the part.
So with the reality proven sufficiently that the designers of dress shoes are sufficiently capitalist, I still wonder if they are just messing with people.
Do they laugh at home behind closed doors at what uncomfortable shoes people are willing to wear day-in-day out. Do they collaborate with one another on how to make it worse and not better. So many questions and so little time.
Maybe I am just a professional in a beach bum body wishing to get away with flip-flops. Maybe, I just need to shop more to find better shoes? Or maybe as I am getting older, I am feeling the aches and pains more.
Finally, WWJD? Would Jesus have worn dress shoes?
Well, I think I have sufficiently scratched the surface of one of those things that makes me go hmmm.
Help me understand this thing called dress shoes?