I remember, in the ‘70’s, wearing such high heeled boots that I tipped forward and looked ridiculous. But thinking back on it I don’t think even those heels were anywhere near what women are wearing today. Honestly, I thought women were more empowered and sensible these days. What’s going on?
I was recently in New York and my eyes popped out watching some women walking along, not even tipped forward, in high heels. The more stylish they appeared the higher the heels. Well known women, celebrity women, were all wearing torture shoes. I can only imagine that every minute of every day we can hear these women taking off those shoes, in private, and exclaiming “OMG, my feet!” Who is promoting this ‘look’? Where did this ‘look’ come from in the first place? High, higher and highest heels do make calves look muscular and sexy but why not just go on a good walk or run everyday, or go to the gym and use one of those calf builder machines? Time? Is it really easier to wear highest heels than exercise? Perhaps. But I think the ankle doctor and podiatrist bills might benefit from getting down to earth with your feet.
There was a time when I worked out at a gym for an hour and a half six days a week and my calves were killer even in sneakers and flats. Perhaps we feel more empowered in heels? But aren’t we as women at a point where we feel empowered anyway? No? Are highest heels the equivalent of a man’s tight tie? Do we kick off our heels once we’re home just as a man would loosen and pull off his tie? Am I reaching? Perhaps.
I’m fortunate enough to live in a place where I can wear flats in the summer and hiking boots in the winter. Even those shoes get shed at the end of the day for barefeet in the summer and fleece slippers in the winter. But when I travel away from here, into the world, I am always amazed by what I see on women’s feet. You could say I’m unsophisticated and I won’t take offence. If sophistication means I have to wear highest heels then I’ll opt for uncivilized.
When I was in New York I asked a young woman why she wore such high heels and she told me she feels more powerful when taller. I’m not very tall myself but grew up believing in ‘small packages pack more dynamite’. When I’m arguing I’ve been known to stand on chairs to get above everyone else; and that doesn’t deform my feet, that doesn’t hurt. I did wear a pair of low heels when in NY but ended up getting three horrid blisters on my feet. I’ll have to stick to flats from now on when I travel.
It pains me that women think they must be complicit with such fashions to be powerful and beautiful. Perhaps we need to revisit bra-burning from the 60’s when we finally threw our repression into the fire; the symbolism is the same. How about everyone throwing their high high heels into a huge pile and burning them? We must say to ourselves, men and women alike, that we’re perfect just the way we are, not because of our costumes but because we’re us.