New shoes definitely give me a high. When I first bring them home, I tenderly take them out of the box, smell the leather, stroke the smooth soles and carefully place them at just the perfect angle on the diningroom table or end table in the livingroom where I can admire them like precious works of art. I may even move them to my bedside table so they will be the first things I see when I wake up in the morning. By the end of wearing them on the first day, however, my heels and baby toes are plastered in Band-Aids, the balls of my feet are screaming “fire” and my back gave up around 10:00 a.m.
Back in the “olden days” in the 60s and 70’s when I was in my 20s I wore high heels exclusively every day to work. For many years I lived downtown and walked or more often ran to work as I’m not a morning person and was usually late – in high heels. Just like the Post Office before they went union, neither wind, nor rain, nor sleet nor hail could keep me from my high-heeled rounds. I clearly remember envying the brogue-wearing men in my office who never had to cope with foot discomfort and burning balls – of the feet, that is.
Now that I am in my 60s I marvel that my feet are not crippled. Today I can barely totter through a holiday party in three-inch heels without wincing in pain. The other day I was shopping in Holt Renfrew and I spotted a fresh young sales associate wearing the most orgasmic pair of high-heeled python pumps. Oh, for the good old days. I told her to enjoy them because some day she was going to be like me wearing Mephistos with industrial-strength arch supports. Of course, she didn’t understand. I didn’t either at that age. At a recent Celebration of Life event I had to stand for about 3 hours in dress shoes and suffered with painful back spasms for days after.
Heels are growing increasingly higher and spikier. Shoe designers are predominantly men. Their designs are truly meant to be admired as works of art – not worn and walked in. Oprah and Marilyn Denis are just two media Boomer broads who readily admit that the only time they wear the killer heels is for the 60 minutes they’re actually on the air, walking to the set in flats. Five-inch heels should be illegal. It’s a form of abuse right up there with Chinese foot-binding and that’s been illegal for more than a century.
Unfortunately, it is our own fault for submitting to this tyranny. Shoe designers should be made to walk in their shoes. I’d love to see Jimmy Choo, Franco Sarto or Christian Louboutin being forced to wear their designs 8 or 10 hours a day for even a week. Then watch the designs change. And the prices are pure usery. $995.00 for a pair of Valentino high-heeled sandals!!! God give me strength.
Let’s show some solidarity ladies. Pick pretty but wearable. Surely they can design comfy shoes in saucy animal prints with fun embellishments and hidden arch supports that still project that we’re hot, current and sexy. We’re Boomers. We’re a demographic with serious buying power. Make yourself heard in the shoe stores. Storm The Bastille Boomer Broads.
Think I’ll go and put on my new Geox biker boots and strut the town. I’m lookin’ good and feelin’ fine. Let’s rock n’ roll.