These boots were made for walking…
It's Friday night and I'm pissed.
As seen on the runways of Milan: Yeah...that really looks comfortable, and not at all difficult wear.
I'm not irritated for the usual reasons. It's not because "7th Heaven" continues to be on the air, despite it being an overly preachy propaganda-laden muck fest. It's not because earlier that day, the bus driver drove through a yellow light despite the fact that he totally saw me, frantically waving my arms and all. And it's not because Halle Berry made Catwoman.
It's because I haven't managed to find a comfortable pair of shoes, besides the worn-down runners that I've been sporting for the past three months, ever since my trusty boots were laid to rest. As I teeter and totter to my very special dinner date in high-heeled, strapped Mary Janes, I can't help but think that I've become the woman that I've always hated. With each step, the straps sever all possible circulation to my feet. The front part of the shoe is practically cutting a hole through my little toe. Maybe it's my stubbornness or because, somehow, the shoes have managed to stop off all circulation to my brain, but I drudge on.
I read somewhere that the damsel-in-distress theory is solely based on the notion that women are forced to wear ridiculous things that hinder any sort of natural movement and, with each excruciating step, I'm more and more convinced. In the 1800s, it was corsets and foot binding. In the 1950s, it was high heels in the kitchen. And in the 1970s, it was daisy dukes (come on, you can't tell me that something riding up your ass is actually comfortable). With each passing decade, there are more and more ways to make fashion akin to primitive torture.
It was easier for me to dress up and endure a little bit of pain when I was younger. But as the years went on, I found it increasingly harder to try to squeeze myself into a tiny dress and five-inch heels, all in the name of looking "feminine." In addition to this, I also had to shave, pluck, do my make-up, paint my nails, and blow-dry my hair for hours to achieve that fresh, natural look. After years of going through the routine, I finally gave up. It worked for those times I was trying to sneak into a club, but now that I'm legally able, there's no point in being the little girl playing dress up.
The media tells me otherwise, though. From Charlie's Angels to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" to Taxi, we're supposed to believe that these women can run, kick ass, and do cartwheels in strappy sandals and mini-skirts, all without any bits and pieces falling out of their low-cut tops. Sure, maybe for one agonizing day. But doing this over and over again seems almost physiologically impossible, and a little impractical. Wouldn't it just be easier to fight crime or run away from it in runners and some roomy joggers, without your sexy windblown hair all over your face? Did we ever see Bruce Lee do his martial arts thing in a tuxedo or a thong?
Of course, I am wrong, because no one would watch these films and television shows if the heroines did, in fact, dress like they were going to lounge at home and eat ice cream all night. They want them to look hot, at all hours of the day, regardless of whether they've just killed an army of the undead or jumped off a bridge onto an oncoming car. Those stilettos sure are a handy weapon, though. They could probably put a hole through anything.
A couple of weeks ago, on a clubbing excursion, I spotted a group of girls hurrying down the street. I couldn't help but notice that, besides being scantily dressed to the nines, it was only fifteen degrees out. They walked purposely close to each other, trying to steal any heat that someone might emit. It's pretty common to see this on a Friday or Saturday night, and yet it still boggles my mind. Not even a sweater. It made me wonder if any of them had heard about the Weather Channel. But most importantly, their mission was achieved, despite the threat of hypothermia: they looked hot.
There's nothing wrong with dressing to impress, but when it overrides all facets of comfort, when do you draw the line? When do you look at that pair of jeans that are so tight that you can't bend at the knee, or that halter top that pushes your boobs so close together that you can't breathe, and just say no? Sometimes it's just better to be confident in your own skin, without all the pretenses.
Clothes are, after all, just clothes. It's the woman underneath those clothes that matters most. ¤ C.Ho.